Follow These Tips For Avoiding Construction Equipment Scams
1) Buy From Reputable Dealers
When you’re in the market for used heavy construction equipment, it’s tempting to make a quick purchase. To avoid potential scams you need to be extremely careful. If the seller refuses to let you see the equipment, attempts to route all transactions through a third party payer, asks for your bank account information, or does not communicate through normal channels, this may be a sign that something isn’t quite right. At the IEDA we vet our members yearly to ensure they meet the association’s high ethical standards and fair business practices.
2) Make Online Purchases Carefully.
One method of avoiding construction equipment scams is to ask for references from other satisfied customers. At the very least, be sure that you have the seller’s contact information, so that if you have a problem you can attempt to work it out. Clearly document the purchase, the condition of the equipment, and get a receipt for the amount you paid. These documents will be important if you have a problem with the sale further down the road.
3) Trust Your Instincts
As you search for construction equipment, there may be signs that something is “off”. Even if you can’t exactly put your finger on what’s wrong with a situation, it may be a sign that you need to slow down and think a bit more carefully about the transaction. If you’re dealing with an online transaction, a stranger, or someone who doesn’t seem to be reputable, it may be wise to trust your instincts and walk away.
4) Buy from Established Dealers. While there are isolated cases where equipment dealers have defrauded buyers, most independent dealers engage in honest sales practices.
Reputable dealers usually are established in the local community, are well-known, and have remained in business due to their trustworthiness over the years. They often are members of equipment-dealer trade associations like the IEDA, whose members can verify dealers who have good business practices.
5) Check the Credentials of the Seller.
If you don’t know a seller or the seller’s reputation, obtain as much information about the seller as possible before purchase. Ask the seller for a list of individuals who have purchased from the dealer and contact these individuals to find out if they were satisfied with their dealings with the seller. Ask the seller for the name of a lender or other reputable businessperson who can give a reference for the seller or contact the IEDA.
6) Get a Written bill of Sale.
Good business practice requires that you get a written bill of sale from the seller when you purchase a piece of equipment.
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