Buyer Tips

If for whatever reason you decide a Toyota dealer doesn’t have the car for you and you decide to buy a car from a private seller:

  • Meet the seller face-to-face in a public place and make sure you feel comfortable with the transaction method discussed before paying for the car in full.
  • Be mindful of the various cash transfer methods to pay for the vehicle or of someone requesting you to pay via a particular method.
  • It is common practice for private-to-private sale transactions to be completed in cash. So consider your safety with this in mind.
  • Be cautious if the advertised price of a car looks too good to be true, it probably is.
  • Be cautious of the legitimacy of an ad just because it appears in a reputable newspaper or classifieds website; scammers post fake ads in these too.
  • Where possible, be cautious of seller’s asking for up-front payment via money order, wire transfer or international funds transfer.
  • Do an Internet search using the exact wording in the ad—many well-known scams can be found this way.
  • Request a number of photos of the item from the seller, if they refuse, it may be that they have taken a photo from a genuine ad and have no others.
  • The PPSR certificate protects you against repossession of the vehicle due to financial interests that were not registered with PPSR. If there is an outstanding amount, ask the seller for written evidence from the financier of the current payout figure.
  • Draw two separate cheques – one payable to the financier for the total payout figure, and the second cheque to the seller for the balance. Never pay the seller the full amount assuming they will pay the financier, even if they say they will.
  • Ask for a receipt from the financier, this should be done at the financier’s office, and a receipt from the seller.
  • It’s also recommended to request a copy of the letter of discharge from the financier. This letter confirms the financier no longer has interest in the vehicle. Keep this letter with your PPSR certificate.
  • If the seller pays out the loan themselves it may will take up to two weeks for a clear title to be processed