Understand and Avoid Curbstoning Vehicles

Buying a Used Car

The easiest way to buy a used car is from visiting your local dealership. However, some people prefer find a private seller because it may be cheaper, faster, and more flexible in payment. Saving money by avoiding the third party comes with some risk. Unfortunately, without taking the proper precautions, many people are scammed by curbstoners.

What is Curbstoning?

Curbstoning is when someone pretends to be a private seller and resells cars to consumers. Buying and selling cars on your own can be profitable, but it is also deceitful. Capture2
Individuals don’t have to comply with the same standards that dealerships have in place to prevent legal issues.

Typically, curbstone deals are done by: (1) people who are actually dealers pretending to be a one-time seller or (2) people who sell multiple cars and should be considered a dealer.

Examples of scenarios where someone may sell a car in an unethical way include:

  • A car that has been totaled or damaged in the past that is fraudulently sold as undamaged
  • A car where the odometer has been altered to read less mileage
  • A stolen vehicle

A curbstoner can get away with the repeated offense by using a fake name on the title, using the previous owner’s name on the title, or by using “seller” instead of a name on documentation.

How to Avoid it

Purchasing your car through a reputable dealer is usually safest. If you insist on buying from a private seller who you do not personally know, do your research and investigate:

  1. Take not of the name on paperwork and ask to see their license to ensure it matches.watch out for low priced vehicles
  2. You can also Google the phone number to see if it is being used to sell multiple cars.
  3. Always check the Carfax report to see if the car has previously been in any accidents or required major repairs.
  4. Finally, before signing any paperwork, take the vehicle to a mechanic for your personal safety.

Never feel shy or rude about asking detailed questions about the vehicles’ past. For instance, find out why they are selling the vehicle and what they used it for in the past. Being prepared and taking the time to get your facts straight can go a long way in helping you avoid a scam.

Tips For Finding Great Car Insurance in NOVA

Your friend says his Insurance Doctor car insurance policy in Northern VA is great, perhaps the best he has ever had, and you wonder what is so wonderful about it. Has he found the best car insurance company? Your friend probably asked some of the following questions and got answers that made him happy; answers that could make you happy too. Find out if you are paying too much for insurance and if your insurance is ready to support you in your time of need.

Accident Forgivenessmodel by care

With some auto insurance, clients’ rates go up from the very first accident or mishap. There is no forgiveness: just financial punishment at the outset. A number of companies, however, have introduced more lenient programs. They will pay when a client is at fault and then keep that client’s rate the same so long as he doesn’t get into a further accident. No one plans to have mishaps on the road but they happen, so ask about this policy of forgiveness.

Roadside Assistance

Drivers don’t anticipate being caught out with a flat tire. They can’t imagine what they would do if their engine suddenly died while they were driving or the ball joint on the front axle simply wore off and they were stuck. That’s where roadside assistance comes in; the tow truck driver, essentially. Car insurance coverage with roadside assistance gives clients access to free towing up to a certain number of times per year. Drivers call the 1-800 number provided, then the insurance company gets in touch with whichever tow truck company they do business within that region. That saves customers from having to hunt for a tow company when they are in distress and just need a helping hand.

Reduced Rates for Good Driving

Are there rewards for being a good driver? In some cases, there is cheap car insurance available for road users who have been driving for 10 years or more and have never been involved in an accident. Find out also what the penalty for being the victim of an accident would be to this driving record. Reward the fairest plan with your business; one that doesn’t turn the clock back to your first day behind the wheel.

Family Plans

New drivers account for more accidents than anyone and they have to sign on to their parents’ auto insurance. If a teen in your household is now driving, car insurance costs are going to rise: there won’t be any cheap car insurance for a while. Their coverage, however, could become part of what is known as a “family” insurance policy. Ensure every driver in the household is signed on to the best car insurance company to receive what is essentially a “bulk discount”: volume savings, similar to a “two-for-one” deal except a lot more costly than pizza. Unfortunately, there is no way to avoid the financial penalty for letting your teenager drive, but going without insurance is unthinkable. Consider obtaining house insurance with the same organization and save even more money without losing essential coverage, and be sure you are insured for $3M liability.

Rewards for Education

Find out if your insurance agency rewards their customers for achieving higher driving standards. It might be worthwhile to enroll in defensive driving classes or highway driving sessions. Students are particularly well advised to embark on these training courses in order to bring their insurance rates down more quickly than otherwise.

Servicing Your Car at a Local Garage vs. the Dealership

When your car develops a serious mechanical fault, you have two possible options for repairing it: you can either take it to your local auto repair shop or the dealership. Each of these options has its advantages and shortcomings. Knowing the pros and cons of each will make the decision-making process much easier for you. Your chances of having the car properly repaired will also increase tremendously if you make the appropriate choice for your particular situation.

local mechanicExpertise

Car dealerships have technical staff who are specialists and factory-trained by the manufacturer to repair specific makes and models of vehicles. Dealerships are also equipped with professional advisers, service managers, and support staff to ensure the job is completed successfully and in a timely manner. Therefore, you can be assured that the problem will be dealt with effectively the first time. Dealers also hire the best auto technicians in the market and pay them top dollar to retain their services.

Local, independent repair shops, however, have mechanics who are “jacks of all trades.” You can easily find one who is an expert in electrical and electronics, and others who specialize in mechanical systems. While they can fix your car, their skill-level may be lower than dealership technicians.


Since authorized dealers have specialists who are well-compensated for their services, they often charge a considerable amount for labor and cost of parts. You should know that dealers only quality, original equipment manufacturer (OEM) parts, which are usually very costly and may increase the cost of the repair. While getting quality parts is an advantage, the cost may be prohibitive.

Local mechanics have access to quality spare parts from third parties. These parts, also known as aftermarket parts, cost much less but can be just as reliable as OEM parts.


The location of local garages can be quite convenient. They can typically be found just around the corner, so you don’t need to drive your car hundreds of miles in order to find an authorized dealership. Additionally, you likely won’t need to wait in line for your turn. The slower pace of the corner garage often means that the mechanic is ready to take care of your car immediately.

Guarantee on Work

If you take your car to your local Richmond VA auto service, you will pay for both the service and parts. On the other hand, a dealer can perform free repairs if your car is still under warranty. The dealer is then compensated by the manufacturer for the auto service. Authorized dealers can also offer manufacturer-backed extended warranties. In terms of warranties and guarantees, dealerships are typically the best choice.

Personal Relationships

Dealers often have a large number of staff. There are managers, the technical team, and the customer support staff. The numerous different faces can make it difficult for customers to build a personal relationship with any one person at the dealership. Your corner garage typically has only a few mechanics with whom you can speak directly and build trust.


If you are a performance-oriented motor enthusiast, going to your local garage will be your best bet. This is because car dealerships only handle specific makes and models – and don’t make any special modifications to enhance the car’s performance or appearance.

Depending on your needs and your budget, the local repair shop around the corner and the car dealership in town both offer significant advantages and disadvantages. Knowing what each can and can’t do, and how they price their work, is crucial in helping you receive the best repair service for your car.