Anyone purchased an illegal car of trademe? My brothers friend got caught out.
Always do a AA Search of a cars history.
http://www.stuff.co.nz/business/industr ... ar-traders
Trade Me has been given new powers to catch illegal backyard car dealers trying to flog dodgy vehicles online.
But some registered car dealers say "nefarious operators" have already ruined Trade Me as an easy place to buy and sell cars.
The Motor Trade Association says unregistered home-based dealers collectively turn over millions of dollars a year but are putting buyers at risk and hurting legitimate traders.
Now, the New Zealand Transport Agency has given Trade Me permission to access the Motor Vehicle Register, a national vehicle ownership database, to help them the "reduce the risk of fraud" for people buying vehicles online.
Access to names and addresses on the register means Trade Me can check sellers actually own the vehicles listed for sale.
* Couple lose $15,000 in cunning car scam
* Car firm used ghost bids to push up prices
* Record fine for illegal motor sales
It will also provide Trade Me with more information to check if unregistered traders are selling more than six cars per year, the yearly legal limit before they are required to be registered.
Trade Me already reports suspected unlicensed traders to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.
However, John Duffy, Trade Me's head of trust and safety, said until now they could not track down illegal traders who were using false details to fly beneath the radar.
Duffy said only a handful of Trade Me staff would be able to access the vehicle register database.
"It's another layer of defence we've got against people who want to get up to no good on our site."
Tony Everett, the Motor Trade Association's dealer services and mediation manager, said anyone who wanted to trade more than six vehicles a year had to pay $596 to register as a dealer.
But many didn't because of the legal obligations it entailed, including compliance with the Consumer Guarantees Act.
Unregistered traders were taking business from legitimate dealers and also putting customers at risk if their was a problem with the vehicle, Everett said.
"If you're buying off someone on the Internet it can be quite difficult to seek redress."
The owner of Rockstar Cars in Auckland, Jonno Leonard, said it was well known within the industry that there were a number of "backyard dealers" importing lower-end vehicles.
They were usually small hatchbacks, from Japan, which were then sold from their backyard at a small profit.
"I think there should be a far more robust process around who can become a licensed dealer. That might weed out some of these more nefarious operators," Leonard said.
Andrew Smith, of Euroland motor company in Lower Hutt, said the rise of unlicensed dealers on Trade Me was having a dramatic impact.
"It's the customers who end up getting shafted. And they get more and more gun shy," he said.
"Trade Me used to be a great place to sell cars, but unfortunately there are so many bad experiences now and we're all getting tarred with the same brush. It's no longer an easy place to buy or sell cars."
Smith, who has been licensed for 12 years, said he would like to see MBIE "do more to get these guys ruining the business for the rest of us".
Trade Me said "a handful" of traders had been banned from the site for "recidivist" activity.
On Wednesday, the Motor Vehicle Traders Register website listed four people who have been banned from vehicle trading.
Current listings & scams on TradeMe - please post cases of fee avoidance or breach of TM rules (contact details) in the "minor transgressions" area - try to stick to the subject and feel free to start a new thread if appropriate.
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