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Author Topic: After hurricanes, flooded RVs being sold as good, far from the affected areas  (Read 723 times)

VallAndMo

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  • Vall and Mo, a married couple getting ready for FT
Hello folks,

Just came across this:
http://gypsyjournalrv.com/2017/10/not-such-a-good-deal/

The author warns about scammers buying flooded vehicles, hiding the most obvious signs, then selling them for seemingly great prices to unsuspecting buyers. He then goes on to report a case that happened to one of his readers in Oklahoma City, which Google Maps shows me as being many hundreds of miles from any flooded areas.

Is this really a common occurrence? How to best detect such vehicles without having to visit them personally and crawl into them? A VIN search on Carfax or similar? Would that work for non-motorized vehicles like TTs, 5thWheels, truck campers etc?

Lots of questions... Thanks in advance for any answers.

Cheers,
--
   Vall.

SeilerBird

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Number one rule is that if it sounds too good to be true then it is too good to be true. Anyone who is dumb enough to not listen to that rule deserves whatever they get. How many times can you tell people to be careful?
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muskoka guy

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Yep, happens all the time. Hurricane Katrina, then Sandy. Now we have the latest batch in the last ten years to be concerned with. I have even heard of them being brought to Canada. Crooks will find any angle to part us from our hard earned money.

Gary RV_Wizard

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Common, meaning frequent?  No, but there are inevitably a few reports after every major flood. And the internet being what it is, the few stories get propagated and amplified.

There are businesses that specialize in buying salvage anything (often at insurance auctions) and either scrapping for parts or refurbishing for resale. Some, of course, are more scrupulous than others, and sometimes they simply fail to find & fix all the damage. And the buyers, hot for a bargain, often fail to look very deep and then cry loudly that they got taken. So yes, it happens all the time, but the risk of encountering one of those units on the market is still rather small.
« Last Edit: October 15, 2017, 09:25:30 AM by Gary RV_Wizard »
Gary
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Rene T

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If a business buys a salvaged RV from a insurance company or a salvaged RV at a auction, is there a way they can change the salvage title to a regular title and no one would know the difference?

I know a guy who buys salvages cars at auction, brings them home at repairs them. My daughter purchased one of his cars. All she had to do (which I did) was take the car to the DMV and a State Trooper inspected it. All we needed was paperwork showing where all the parts came from (donor vehicle), and he gave us a regular title.
« Last Edit: October 15, 2017, 09:43:47 AM by Rene T »
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VallAndMo

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  • Vall and Mo, a married couple getting ready for FT
Hi Rene,

If a business buys a salvaged RV from a insurance company or a salvaged RV at a auction, is there a way they can change the salvage title to a regular title and no one would know the difference?

I'm also interested in the answer to this.

I know a guy who buys salvages cars at auction, brings them home at repairs them. My daughter purchased one of his cars. All she had to do (which I did) was take the car to the DMV and a State Trooper inspected it. All we needed was paperwork showing where all the parts came from (donor vehicle), and he gave us a regular title.

Interesting. Some questions:
1) Which State?
2) Do you get a new VIN with the new title?
3) What would a Carfax on such a VIN (changed or not) show?

Cheers,
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   Vall.


Rene T

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Hi Rene,

I'm also interested in the answer to this.

Interesting. Some questions:
1) Which State?
2) Do you get a new VIN with the new title?
3) What would a Carfax on such a VIN (changed or not) show?

Cheers,
--
   Vall.

The car was repaired in Me but was inspected in NH. It kept the same Vin.
Rene & Lucille & co-pilot Buddy
AKA  Pep N Mem
2011 Chevy Duramax 2500 HD 4X4
2011 Montana High Country 343RL
From the Granite State of NH
& Florida Snowbird in Lakeland FL

VallAndMo

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  • Vall and Mo, a married couple getting ready for FT
Hi Rene,

The car was repaired in Me but was inspected in NH.

OK.

Quote
It kept the same Vin.

OK, so the salvage would appear in Carfax, I think.

Thanks for the info.

Cheers,
--
   Vall.

Gary RV_Wizard

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The VIN never changes, so that the vehicle can always be identified.
Gary
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grashley

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VIN never changes!

I had a friend who bought wrecked cars to rebuild.  He did great work, and his cars were as good as never wrecked. He had one with a bent frame.  He cut out and replaced that frame section, fixed the car, and drove it himself for another 175,000 miles. One active member here bought a salvage title camper recently, and is very happy with the purchase.

Salvage title does not mean run away.  It means proceed with caution, and make sure you know what you are getting  and what it's true condition is!  Of course, this applies to clean titles as well!
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Utclmjmpr

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 Don't be naive and rely on Carfax not everyone is registered with Carfax.>>>Dan
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keymastr

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Certain states are more often targeted due to their licensing laws. Often if a totaled car can be repaired quickly enough it can be re-registered in a favorable state and sold with a clean title and Carfax report. My state of Washington is one of these states and I will not buy a vehicle that was ever registered out of state because of that. It often takes the reporting agencies a couple months to get all the paperwork filed which leaves enough time to get the title transferred.

If it seems too good to be true it probably is. We see lots of flood damaged cars here.

VallAndMo

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  • Vall and Mo, a married couple getting ready for FT
Thanks for the info, everyone.

So the VIN never changes, but a Carfax report on it isn't ironclad, specially on some states (like WA).

I understand the above applies to cars and motorized RVs (motorhomes). What about un-motorized ones like TTs and 5thWheels?

Cheers,
--
   Vall.

Gary RV_Wizard

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Carfax can only provide whatever info was reported to it for that VIN. Numerous shops do not participate, and relatively few RV dealers are included. Even some insurers may not report claims on RVs, even though they do so for cars.

Trailers have a VIN, but seem to rarely get any repair data sent into Carfax. I think state DMVs usually report trailer title transfers, though.
Gary
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Gary Brinck
Summers: Black Mountain, NC
Home: Ocala National Forest, FL

 

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