Dangers of buying a car on the street

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SINCE the financial crisis broke out in 2007, illegal car sales have risen by 20 per cent in Spain.

According to the Ganvam national association of vehicle dealers, of the overall annual sales between individuals, around 10 per cent are fraudulent. This means some 95,000 vehicles at an estimated value of €300 million, every year.

Most illegal sales are done in car parks near shopping centres as if they were some sort of showroom, Ganvam reported.

This blackmarket is considered “a clearly unfair competition for car dealers,” the association reported. These irregular sellers operate with no municipal license, they do not pay taxes and they are not registered in the IAE trade income tax list, as legal businesses do.      

Selling a car on the driveway in Spain can be allowed or forbidden by law – with fines of up to €3,000 in Alicante city, for example – depending on the town’s local regulations.  In some places, town councils need to be notified before displaying the ‘For Sale’ sign. For this reason, the association has pleaded several times for national regulations.

In order to stress the benefits of buying a new or second-hand car from a professional dealer, Ganvam reminded buyers they are covered by law with a warranty, and they are always provided with a signed contract and invoice as proof of the transaction.   

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