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Tips for buying a 924 from a distance

 
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chuck21401  



Joined: 20 Feb 2005
Posts: 244
Location: Annapolis, MD

PostPosted: Tue May 07, 2019 2:02 am    Post subject: Tips for buying a 924 from a distance Reply with quote

I've been looking to buy a 924/931 on and off for several years. Several interesting cars have come up in my search but usually they are nowhere near where I live (Maryland).

There are several hurdles...one is being able to see the car in person before it sells locally...the next is buying the car...and then getting it back home.

Years ago in Maryland you could get a paper temporary tag for the purpose of transporting a car from another state but from what I can tell that is no longer an option. Some sellers might let you drive home on their tag and mail it back, but once they've sold the car why would they take on the liability? Shipping is an option but is expensive for relatively inexpensive cars.

How do people handle payment for cars that they don't take delivery on right away? Has anyone used one of those escrow services? Or do you trust the seller until delivery can be arranged?

Chuck
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Cohoquad  



Joined: 06 May 2019
Posts: 9
Location: Cohasset MA

PostPosted: Tue May 07, 2019 6:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have bought many cars from a distance and MA is the same, no temp plate. Have the seller sign a purchase agreement and have them email with a copy of the title (front and back) and registration. Wire money and ask that signed title and signed bill of sale fedexed to you O/N. With that you can register the car and get your plates so you can drive it back. In my experience most people are very decent and you have all the info you will need to sue if it goes south. Even decent people tend to overestimate the condition their car is in so buyer beware. It will probably be there when you go pick it up. But the “excellent condition” car you just bought might be less than what you hoped. Bought a Range Rover from my dad “in great shape” that needed a head gasket, brakes, tires, etc. when I asked him what the heck, he said I never said it was a new car!

If doing sight unseen have dozens of pictures and videos emailed. Or you can travel, inspect, buy get paperwork go home get plate and go out again.

Good luck. The journey is half the fun
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TJC  



Joined: 04 Apr 2010
Posts: 755
Location: Central-ish Arizona, USA

PostPosted: Wed May 08, 2019 1:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can't quite remember the last time I bought a car up close and personal, (except for that "time bomb" X5 that I quickly disposed of last year)...that would take the fun and adventure out of it. My first rule is never buy a car from a distance or sight unseen that you can't afford to take a great risk on otherwise you may be greatly heartbroken instead of a little heartbroken with a bit of optimism thrown in.
Research your potential purchase to the best of your ability and learn to ask the right questions. Gauge the seller's answers carefully so you may try to tell if they're a straight shooter or full of crap. Get as many photos as possible especially of known trouble areas. Consider having the car shipped instead of picking it up. One, you'll save transportation costs getting there and just in case you get cold feet you'll need to arrange an alternate return trip and possibly lodging. Two, if you pick it up and decide to drive it back you need to make sure you are prepared for the worst in terms of breakdowns, repairs, an extra day or two of time etc. Even being semi-retired to me that hassle just isn't worth it. There are a number of transport companies that can safely get your new baby home to you. I've often used U-Ship and quite honestly I have paid less than what it would have cost me to go and collect the vehicle myself...and I didn't need to agonize over it! Remember you're dealing with an old car and even if the PO was passionate about maintenance and repairs these cars have quirks and anything can happen so if you do pick it up to drive home be prepared for an adventure!

As far as the financial and legal side I can't help you there...call a lawyer !

Good luck and have fun taking the plunge !
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'95 BMW 318i/5 ..."Pearl"
'80 Porsche 924 Turbo..."Pogo"
'81 Porsche 924 Turbo...Parting!
'87 Porsche 944 NA... "Liebchen"
'02 Porsche Boxster..."Sunbeam"

Still on the Prowl!

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Ozzie  



Joined: 12 Mar 2005
Posts: 4447
Location: Townsville, Qld. Australia

PostPosted: Wed May 08, 2019 6:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

picked mine up and after a day or so, 'service' at my brothers place drove 2000+ miles to home. had 2 breakdowns- heater hose blew out and rad fan bearings seized. also had issues with vac advance not working in dissy.

as long as you are mechanically minded and have tools and auto parts stores, most of the time its an easy fix if the motor is ok.
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jacobroufa  



Joined: 18 Nov 2016
Posts: 281
Location: Rockford, IL

PostPosted: Wed May 08, 2019 11:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ozzie wrote:
as long as you are mechanically minded and have tools and auto parts stores, most of the time its an easy fix if the motor is ok.


This has been roughly my experience as well. Also one of my red flags... if a seller is not communicative as I need to get details about the vehicle for a long distance purchase, that car is not an option. It helps to have friends in the area as well. The more information you have though, the better off you will be.

Someone mentioned tags... Some states do not require temp plates or do not even offer them -- I drove several states last fall in a car with just the title and sale note in my glove box, and ended up registering with a temp plate in Colorado prior to the rest of my journey to Illinois. I would look up the purchase state's laws regarding this if having the title mailed to you in order to pre-register is not an option.

Good luck and share your stories when you get back!
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chuck21401  



Joined: 20 Feb 2005
Posts: 244
Location: Annapolis, MD

PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2019 10:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the advice.

I drove down to see the car and take it for a test drive. The seller prepared a bill of sale. I bought the car and took the signed title with me and arrange for shipping. I used USHIP. Everything worked fine but it was an odd experience working with three different parties to arrange shipping. The broker, shipping
company and driver didn’t seem to be communicating. But it worked out fine and was able to ship the car from NC to MD for under $400.

Above all else it helps to have a great seller. Thanks Ian!

I’ve owned a 1988 944 and a 1986 944 turbo.

This 1981 924 turbo is a different animal and a lot of fun to drive.




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