Saturday, March 21, 2015

Were We Being Scammed?

Our ads for the sale of our motor home generated a lot of interest.  We had people from all over the country wanting to come see it.  One person from a distant State quickly had his Credit Union indicate to us that he was approved for a loan that along with his funds would allow him to buy it right away – that they would wire us the funds as soon as he inspected it and give them the go ahead for the wire.  That seemed sufficient for us to declare the unit sold to the others, pull our ads, and to proceed to the sale with this prospective buyer.


Only then were we informed that the buyer could not get off of work to come inspect it and drive it home.  He put his son who was located somewhat closer to us in the process to come inspect it and drive it away.  But the son also had a lot of scheduling issues.  It then was suggested that we empty the unit, drive it to the location of the son, and after an inspection receive a certified check for the purchase.  Somehow, that was labeled by the prospective buyer as a “win win” solution.  Huh?  We did agree we would deliver if it could be inspected, paid for, and us put on the buyer’s insurance for the trip.  He would not accept that plan.

At that point we lost a lot of trust in this potential buyer.  We put our foot down that the sale would be at our RV lot in Florida and that the payment terms would have to be exactly as we had always specified – a wire transfer received in our account.  But the prospective buyer keep pleading his case that his son would only have a limited amount of time with us and that we would have to empty it before his arrival (we live in this motor home, emptying it only potentially to have to reload it would be a monumental task), allow an inspection, and drive it away on the strength of a phone call from the Credit Union that the wire had been sent.  At this point the negotiations became irreparably damaged.

The demands of the potential buyer had the aura of some classic scams.  The only part we could not figure out was that the Credit Union verified by email his loan for the purchase and we separately had verified the status of the Credit Union and the loan officer we communicated with.  Just the same, it just didn’t pass the smell test and we never did get confirmed timing for when it all could have occurred, so it was best that we move on.  We will contact the other interested parties to see if they still have interest and may have to relist it for sale again.  Meanwhile we are glad the silliness of this prospect if not the scamming is over.  We will have to find a buyer who is prepared and willing to follow a robust and orderly sale process.


  1. Sounds like you dodged a bullet.

  2. Good pass on this one. As you said, that one has all of the ingredients of a scam. Think about it. Would you buy a MH sight unseen based upon on the word of someone else. I sure wouldn't. Move on to a "real" buyer.

  3. Yikes!! Glad you decided to pass on that mess! We had similar queasiness as we bought our land from a craigslist listing :)

  4. I have sold several cars on craigslist and this is a classic scam. I tell them cash only an you must be the one to pick it up in order to sign the bill of sale or no deal, no exceptions. This weeds the scammers out pretty quickly. I also don't take the add down till I have cash in hand. Too many lookers and promisers... Good luck in the future!

  5. Well, what has happened on the sale process? Back on the Craigslist?

  6. I think you were correct. Better luck next time.