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Buying an out of state car

Discussion in 'Ferrari Discussion (not model specific)' started by Lektronimo, Jan 14, 2013.

  1. Lektronimo

    Lektronimo Karting

    Dec 31, 2012
    137
    Franklin Square NY
    Full Name:
    Stefano
    Hi
    Trying to find a little info here
    I recently lost my Euro 1976 Dino 308gt4 (that I had for 28 years) to hurricane Sandy, luckily I was insured
    I'm shopping for a replacement, figured I'd try something a little different, I drove a few 308s but my car felt way quicker then the ones I test drove, now I'm moving on to 328s, I can barely afford the cheapest ones though, a few that I found at decent prices are out of state.
    How does one go about buying an out of state car? do you hire someone to go check out the car? what is the best safest and most cost effective way of doing this?
    Also how would I get a car back to NY?
    Any info greatly appreciated
    Thanks!
    Stefano
     
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  3. Dohangs

    Dohangs F1 Rookie
    Owner

    Oct 31, 2008
    2,870
    Florida
    I guess it will depend on if you are buying from a private party or a dealership. Either way, you could ask someone on Fchat in that part of the country to go and take a look for you and give you their opinion on the car. You should also get a PPI from either a Ferrari dealership or a place who knows Ferrari's so you have a good idea of the condition of the car and how much to offer. Good luck with your purchase.
     
  4. bosshog8

    bosshog8 Formula Junior

    Mar 13, 2011
    448
    Pinelands NJ
    Full Name:
    Demetrius
    As someone who has done it, I bought a car from California while in New Jersey, There are several options for a private party:
    1. Go see and inspect it yourself
    2. Hire someone to do it
    3. Ask someone you trust to do it
    4. Take the sellers word and circumstantial evidence such as photos, videos and maintenance records.
    5. Use an escrow company to broker the deal
    6. Use an auction like ebay, which provides a certain level of protection thorough its vehicle purchase protection guarantee.

    To get it back:
    1. Drive it
    2. Let someone else drive it
    3. Pay someone to ship it

    If you buy from a dealer there are probably other options which I have no idea about.
     
  5. jpk

    jpk Formula Junior

    I just bought my Ferrari out of state, sight unseen. It was, fortunately for me, a relatively surprise free experience and I got a good car at a good price out of the deal. But I will admit it was not a risk-free deal and I could have easily gotten a lemon.

    Some simple things I did to check on the car, since it was located in a small town with no Ferrari service center for hundreds of miles.

    1. Asked for photos of the parts of the car I was concerned with.
    2. Asked for a short cell phone video of the car running.
    3. Talked to the mechanic that had done prior service on the car.
    4. Got a Carfax history
    5. Got a price that I felt took into account possible service I might have to do immediately upon taking delivery of the car.

    Also, to help with the process of getting the title and registration smoothly transferred over to me in another state, I only looked at cars at car dealerships. I don't like dealing with the paperwork myself too much and so appreciated having a dealership that knew how to get everything over to me without any hassles. I didn't look at private party sales out of state for this reason.

    In more ideal conditions, you would either ask a local certified Ferrari mechanic to give an expert opinion on the condition of the car (for a fee) or have a trusted rep test drive the car for you. I didn't have that option, so I got the evidence I could and weighed the risk versus paying up more to buy the same car from a location where I could do a thorough inspection or drive it myself. I would have been paying up ~$15k to buy a car on the west coast where I could inspect it myself, so I took the risk figuring maybe I'd have $10k in repair bills and still be OK. Lucky for me, I only ended up spending $2k to get the car into good shape, so I'm happy.

    You asked for safest and most cost effective, two things that are going to be in conflict. Since you are looking for a used Ferrari, you will have to include out of state searches or else you will never find the exact car you want. (Then again, you are in New York, a very large market!!) Safest will be to buy in a major city where there is a selection of Ferrari mechanics to inspect the car and/or a friend to test drive for you. No doubt, the market for Ferraris in a larger city will be better, so prices will be higher.
     
  6. teachdna

    teachdna Formula Junior

    Sep 1, 2001
    374
    Cincinnati
    Full Name:
    Jeffrey Robbins
    #5 teachdna, Jan 16, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 16, 2013
    I've bought most of my cars out of state: some sight unseen, most not.

    The most stress-free way is to make plans in advance to go see the car and have the PPI done that day. You can find reputable shops thru the local car clubs. I also do "due diligence" as much as possible. If it's a company, look at all ratings available on internet (BBB, yelp, etc). Also just do a search for the person if it's a private party on Google. No snooping here, just see what's out there.

    For example, it was clear from 5 minutes of internet research that the last couple I bought a car from was a lawyer and a cop: that enhanced the level of confidence. They owned a house and had lived in the community for a while. All intangibles but useful to me in terms of overall confidence level. If it's any help, I've bought cars out of state, worth about half a million over the years and haven't been burned yet. As usual, if the deal seems too good to be true, it is. If something doesn't smell right, be willing and able to walk away. Have done that quite often as well.

    Good luck!

    Good luck!
     
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  8. Lektronimo

    Lektronimo Karting

    Dec 31, 2012
    137
    Franklin Square NY
    Full Name:
    Stefano
    Thanks all!
    I'm waiting to look at a car just 2 1/2 hours away a 1986 black 328 with service records 41k miles, says all original, Ferrari serviced car, no pics the guy said I should see the car in person
    supposedly great shape, Tubi exhaust , last service 2009

    But the one that's killing me is a 1986 Blue 328 out of state (Texas) 57k miles but so clean in and out , looks like you could eat off the wheels, really love the color. no service records past 2002 though,
    I was thinking of hiring a company called Auto Critic to inspect and drive the car
    Seems to me the Black one (providing its in the condition the owner says its in) is the safer buy, I can see it and drive it
    But prefer Blue over Black.
    These were the only two cars within my budget that I really liked
    also thinking I can get a better deal in the winter
    Thanks again for your opinions!
     
  9. sammyb

    sammyb Formula 3

    Jun 23, 2006
    1,857
    Where wife tells me
    Full Name:
    Sam
    Buy the car you want. If both are private parties, then it's just about knowing the right questions to ask and being a good listener to tell if the owner is bsing you. If they are dealers, then you can't trust a word they say, period. (This is because most dealers don't spend any time or money on anything not appearance related, so they have no idea about anything you cannot see.)

    As a general rule, you need to establish if this car has been driven regularly and if it has been reliable. I have always found that the guy who says "hey, I've driven this car with 60K miles to X car show every year 300 miles round trip without a problem. I replaced the ignition amplifiers and changed the belts, but I don't have the receipts" is much better than the guy who has the 19,000 mile car with $20,000 worth of service records yet cannot show he has driven the car more than 200 miles before needing something fixed or serviced.

    As Chairpilot can attest, these cars will go well over 200,000 miles without opening the engine. This assumes that some mechanic didn't screw something up (like the knucklehead who rebuilt the engine on my GT4 for the previous owner and put one of the headgaskets on upside down.)

    So -- just have the owner in Texas send you photos of all the problem areas: front deck lid (since it's an 86, which has a button release, so the hood gets bent), fuse boxes -- looking for melting, fog/turn lenses and lip spoiler -- prone to being broken, as well as get him to put in writing the running condition: does it overheat or have trouble starting or idling...or does it crunch into gears, leak oil or any fluids??? Any rust? Damage? dents, dings?

    I bought my blue '86 328 site unseen from a guy with no service history, because he worked at an Italian-speciality mechanic shop. A true petrol-head, he wanted to buy a 348. He was spot-on on his description and a total awesome guy to deal with. I could tell in the first three minutes on the first phone call that he was shooting straight.
     
  10. zippyslug31

    zippyslug31 Formula 3

    Sep 28, 2007
    2,072
    PDX
    Full Name:
    Kevin M.
    I'm in Oregon and bought a car found in Texas.
    My basic steps:
    - Had seller send me lots of pics first, some of which I had him shoot of specifically of details/typical trouble spots that I wanted to see. Don't waste time on cars that have problems you don't want to deal with.
    - Once my prospect was found, I agreed to fly there with the seller knowing that I was coming to inspect and test drive the vehicle.
    - Arraigned a PPI local to the seller.
    - Flew there and reviewed/PPI'd the car as well as chatted with the mechanics the seller claimed to use.
    - Once the deal was agreed upon, I arranged for transport and wired the money after I received confirmation by the transport company that the car was loaded and in-bound.
     
  11. Lektronimo

    Lektronimo Karting

    Dec 31, 2012
    137
    Franklin Square NY
    Full Name:
    Stefano
    The blue car I like is at a dealership.Pics show car super clean, almost too clean!
    Here is the Car Fax question why does the car fax start in 1991 when it is a 1986 model?
    Does this look normal?


    01/09/1991 California
    Motor Vehicle Dept. Title issued or updated
    08/18/1995 29,583 California
    Inspection Station
    Yorba Linda, CA Passed emissions inspection
    09/09/1997 31,987 California
    Inspection Station
    Yorba Linda, CA Passed emissions inspection
    11/06/1999 34,094 Service Facility
    Maricopa, CA Vehicle serviced
    11/06/1999 California
    Inspection Station
    Maricopa, CA Passed emissions inspection
    11/10/1999 California
    Motor Vehicle Dept.
    Cambria, CA Title issued or updated
    07/06/2001 35,002 Service Facility
    Maricopa, CA Vehicle serviced
    07/06/2001 California
    Inspection Station
    Maricopa, CA Passed emissions inspection
    02/01/2002 California
    Motor Vehicle Dept.
    Irvine, CA Title issued or updated
    New owner reported
    Loan or lien reported
    02/05/2002 35,497 California
    Inspection Station
    Yorba Linda, CA Passed emissions inspection
    07/12/2004 California
    Motor Vehicle Dept.
    Brea, CA Title issued or updated
    06/03/2005 California
    Motor Vehicle Dept.
    Brea, CA Title issued or updated
    Loan or lien reported
    07/07/2005 45,183 California
    Inspection Station Passed emissions inspection
    07/11/2007 50,764 California
    Inspection Station
    Santa Ana, CA Passed emissions inspection
    09/14/2009 54,540 California
    Inspection Station
    Brea, CA Passed emissions inspection
    11/27/2012 California
    Motor Vehicle Dept.
    Brea, CA Title issued or updated
    Loan or lien reported
    12/10/2012 58,876 Auto Auction
    Pacific Region Sold at auction

    Thanks all!
     
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  13. sammyb

    sammyb Formula 3

    Jun 23, 2006
    1,857
    Where wife tells me
    Full Name:
    Sam
    Seems to have passed through many hands in few years, which is concerning. Every time there's a new title updated, that has to be considered a new owner. And the fact that it went through a dealer auction is extremely concerning.

    Still, you can ask the dealer to simply take some iPhone video of the car at temp going through the gears and the rev range, plus provide detailed photos.

    I'm one of the few who is not sold on the value of a PPI, since unless you're absolutely certain of the qualifications (and motives) of the person doing the PPI, you're just adding cost to the level of uncertainty. PPIs are like mammograms: on average they simply add cost and fear more than they hit the nail on the head.
     
  14. Lektronimo

    Lektronimo Karting

    Dec 31, 2012
    137
    Franklin Square NY
    Full Name:
    Stefano
    Hey SammyB why do you say that "dealer auction is extremely concerning"?
    I'm just curious, it looks to me like the guy probably had a lien on the car and defaulted on payments and had the car confiscated and then it wound up on the block
    Or am I just wishful thinking here? I'm still scared as hell of buying a bad car lol
     
  15. GatorFL

    GatorFL Moderator
    Moderator Owner

    Nov 18, 2005
    12,832
    Wellington, FL
    Full Name:
    Duane
    Dealers auction cars they won't sell on their own lot. So probably that instead of a buyer defaulting. I don't think any dealers are buy-here pay-here with Ferraris.

    I've bought 2 328's. One far and one nearby. The best advice I can give is buy the best car that you can find and also don't buy sight unseen--always go check it out. I would also add you should spend a few hundred $ on a PPI so you know what you are getting in to.

    You can do a search in the 328 section, there is a buyer's guide there: http://www.ferrarichat.com/forum/308-328/175886-what-look-when-buying-308-328-buyers-guide.html
     
  16. sammyb

    sammyb Formula 3

    Jun 23, 2006
    1,857
    Where wife tells me
    Full Name:
    Sam
    Dealer auctions are concerning, because it's a way for dealers to get rid of cars they'd have trouble selling. It is possible that the finance company repoed it, but then you have to ask yourself: "if he couldn't afford the car, could he afford the maintenance?"

    Still, that being said, my GT4 was essentially a repo (it was given up as collateral on a mortgage with the seller carrying the loan.) I did, however, buy it at a price in line with the fact that it barely ran.

    Buying any car -- or any item, for that matter, should be done based upon its real world value. All purchases have an inherent amount of risk, which is why warranties are actually insurance policies regulated by State Insurance Commissioners. Assess the amount of risk based upon what you see and are told by the seller. If it is riskier than others out there (even if it is riskier for you compared to other potential buyers,) build that into your offer.

    The worst thing is that the seller won't take your offer.
     
  17. Lektronimo

    Lektronimo Karting

    Dec 31, 2012
    137
    Franklin Square NY
    Full Name:
    Stefano
    This is the car I've been drooling over,
    looks amazing
    but I know looks can be deceiving , I once purchased a Porsche 1986 928, real looker, drove it & hired a Porsche mechanic to give it the once over, he gave the thumbs up
    It was the worst nightmare of a car I've ever had, broke down every week and x pensive to fix!
    on the other hand a friend of mine drank a bottle of wine went on ebay and purchased a custom Porsche Boxster with a 3.4 engine, he never had the car checked ahead of time, its been phenomenal for him, no issues
    I must find the right one, it cant be a lemon
    My budget is low for a 328 I know
    Have some money from my totaled GT4 and a few bucks I managed to save, here is the link to Blue

    1986 Ferrari 328 GTS, $34,950 - Cars.com
     
  18. sammyb

    sammyb Formula 3

    Jun 23, 2006
    1,857
    Where wife tells me
    Full Name:
    Sam
    It looks very nice...but here is what I notice:
    -It appears that the front hood is bowed. Per one of my earlier posts, this is common, because the '86 has the push-button hood strut. It's possible they simply didn't get the hood down tight on the driver side, but this is something to check with some questions and close-up pix.

    -No engine pictures -- would definitely need to see those.

    -It at least starts... and appears to idle around 1200 rpms with good cold oil pressure.

    - Can you live with the chromed wheels? ;)

    I would ask the following, as well:
    -Any dimples/dents on the top of the rear deck lid? This is common from knuckleheads slamming it down. Dents in the panel between the rear window and targa are also common, because it's very thin metal there.

    - Is it original paint and originally an Azzurro car? Have them send you a pic of the Glasuirit decal on the underside of the rear deck lid.

    - Does the A/C work?

    - Depending on where you live, you might ask about the smog pump and/or cats (if they are installed or come with the car-- I'd guess not.)

    -Tool bag and jack?

    Assuming there are good answers to your questions and concerns, if you offer $27,500, I think you'll be dancing! Remember, these clowns got this at auction...probably for nowhere north of $22K, since at an auction you don't get much time to inspect or test drive...sometimes there are absolutely no records or info.

    Oh -- and compared to a typical 928, the 328 is a reliability dream. 928s are great cars, but man they have some serious engineering defects and parts prices are insane. Due to the value of the cars and the parts prices, so many have been totally abused. A friend of mine bought a running one for $4,500 about 12 years ago and within a month he was double-down with everything from fuel pump to the most expensive ignition key I'd heard of at the time.
     
  19. Lektronimo

    Lektronimo Karting

    Dec 31, 2012
    137
    Franklin Square NY
    Full Name:
    Stefano
    Yeah the 928 destroyed me financially my friends used to tease me That I didn't need a mechanic I needed a priest, they said it was possessed lol
    I offered 30,000 on the Blue 328, he wants 33.5 the dealer sent me service records up to 2002
    I have engine bay pics, it is so clean you could eat off of it, as well as the spare, looks like new to me
    It just seems too good, every other 328 that I see are just ok at this price
    I'm sure it needs belt service, but I wonder what else?
    Even if I fly to see it
    I'm not a mechanic, I'd have a good feel driving it, but that's not enough when spending this much money
    All the money required to get to Texas (I'm in NY) hire someone to really check the car out + hotel, if the car turns out to be a dud my car budget would really shrink.
    The 928 experience really hurt, cant buy a bad car again
    SammyB can you send a private message with your email? I could send you the engine pics
    you seem to know a lot about these cars
    Thanks for all the advice!
     
  20. peterp

    peterp F1 Veteran

    Aug 31, 2002
    6,006
    NJ
    Full Name:
    Peter
    I'm late to this thread, but thought I'd make one point I didn't see mentioned in the discussion. If the 308's you drove were injected 2-valve cars, they will be down on power versus the GT4. Even a QV will feel different than a carbed GT4. A carbed 308, however, should be very similar to the GT4, so you may want to check those out if you haven't already (might also be closer to budget than a 328).

    Regarding out of state, I consider buying out of state the norm because there tends to be relatively few F-cars cars on the market overall and it is especially important to get the best one available. I bought my Mondial 3.2 over the phone because I really felt comfortable with the PO after spending an hour on the phone. I sent him a deposit to hold the car, but he insisted it be refundable if I didn't like it when I got there (another sign it came from a good home). My brother and I flew out to pick it up and drove it back from TN to NJ. It's surprisingly inexpensive to have it trucked, but there is nothing better than a long trip in a new (to you) Ferrari.

    When I was looking for a 330GT, I found one that I thought was "the car" after talking to the owner on the phone for a couple hours. He owned it 30 years and had a full rebuild done a few years prior. This car was not easy to see -- he was in New Mexico and located several hours from the nearest airport. An Fchatter volunteered to look at the car for me and I'm thankful to this day that he did because the car was not nearly as nice as I thought from the discussion. If you find a car far away, you might post in the regional area on Fchat and someone will probably volunteer to check it out for you. I ended up finding my car in Vermont, I made the 5 hour trip to check it out then had it trucked to NJ.
     
  21. ace_pilot

    ace_pilot Formula Junior

    Sep 6, 2007
    894
    Long Island, NY
    Full Name:
    George
    Have you tried Peter Sweeny at Forza Motorsports up there in CT? He often has cars that are modestly priced. Recently there was a 328 euro that was sold in the 30's. A few of us have purchased cars from him without problems. If I didn't have my 328, that one would have been in my garage by now.

    Also you might want to budget a little more money than the initial cost of the car. If traveling to Texas is going to make or break a deal, then you might not have enough when the first repair bill comes in.

    Ace
     
  22. HighandDry

    HighandDry Formula Junior

    Jul 24, 2012
    447
    Seattle
    Full Name:
    Steve
    There's nothing inherently wrong with auction cars. Many cars will be traded in and then bounced between dealers without actually physically moving, which in essence is like an auction.

    My Aston Martin was a trade in at a dealer in Atlanta and that car ended up at the Ferrari dealership in Scottsdale. When I traded it in, it had passed between 2 dealers before it ended up in Texas.

    My BMW was a repro with 500 miles and came from Hawaii to Seattle. Serviceman was deployed and stopped paying. Hopefully, he just didn't have the money...

    I have bought many cars out of state and sight unseen. Besides the obvious maintenance records, Carfax, etc

    1) Get a PPI
    2) Have someone on the board take a look at it
    3) Hire a detail guy in the area to take a look at it- they not only look at cosmetic, but can tell if there was any re-paint/body work

    Don't use those services that check out your car. They are a joke. When I traded in my Aston, they sent one of those services. He took a look around and said, "Wow, never seen one of these before." I asked him if he wanted a drive and his reply was, "I trust you if you tell me that the car runs well."
     
  23. Lektronimo

    Lektronimo Karting

    Dec 31, 2012
    137
    Franklin Square NY
    Full Name:
    Stefano
    Hey Steve, glad I didn't hire one of those services!
    I have a reputable Ferrari dealer doing a PPI on it tomorrow
    I wont be getting much sleep tonight! LOL
     
  24. ferrari.house

    ferrari.house Rookie

    Mar 9, 2017
    2
    Reviving an old thread. Just wanted input from the more experienced buyers out there on how they would go about buying a car out-of-state?

    Specifically,

    What are the nuances that I need to take care of?
    What are the issues that I am likely to face?
    Can I come up with a comprehensive checklist before I go about the purchase?
    Is the whole process a dicey affair?
     

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