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Old 13.09.2019, 15:51
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Process for buying a secondhand leased car

I'm in the process of agreeing to buy a secondhand car from a private individual and would appreciate any help on how to go about it.

It is currently a leased car, and I am buying it from the current owner with part of the price going to pay off the lease and the rest going to the owner.

The guy seems trustworthy and actually lives very close to me, but what are the correct steps for doing this?

I assume I take a pile of CHF1000 notes with me and go with him to the lease company, pay them their share, then go to the Cantonal Vehicule Office, do the change of ownership paperwork and give him the rest before cruising off into the sunset*...?

*Geneva rushhour traffic
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Old 13.09.2019, 16:34
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Re: Process for buying a secondhand leased car

Quick update: the owner is proposing that I send the money to the lease company and to him by bank transfer, and once it has cleared then we can go and do the change of ownership. I am a little uncomfortable with that idea...
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Old 13.09.2019, 17:20
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Re: Process for buying a secondhand leased car

Based on my limited knowledge, it should be:
1. Guy pays the Restwert/Residual to the Lease company (I'm assuming it is end-of-lease time).
2. Lease company will inform Cantonal Vehicle Office that "change of ownership" is now possible
3. Guy goes to Cantonal Vehicle Office to update the gray card
4. You meet, you give cash and he gives you the car

Now, if the guy doesn't have the cash for the Restwert, then he will need your cash already in #1 with you holding nothing. If you think he is trustworthy, then go ahead. If not, maybe put some things in writing and notarized.
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Old 13.09.2019, 17:25
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Re: Process for buying a secondhand leased car

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Based on my limited knowledge, it should be:
1. Guy pays the Restwert/Residual to the Lease company (I'm assuming it is end-of-lease time).
2. Lease company will inform Cantonal Vehicle Office that "change of ownership" is now possible
3. Guy goes to Cantonal Vehicle Office to update the gray card
4. You meet, you give cash and he gives you the car

Now, if the guy doesn't have the cash for the Restwert, then he will need your cash already in #1 with you holding nothing. If you think he is trustworthy, then go ahead. If not, maybe put some things in writing and notarized.
If the guy can't buy the car himself first, don't bother with the deal.
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Old 13.09.2019, 18:03
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Re: Process for buying a secondhand leased car

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If the guy can't buy the car himself first, don't bother with the deal.
Normally I'd agree with this, but a lot of people that lease cars seem to be financially illiterate. Hence he needs the cash in the first place

Fresh example from somebody I know, 27yo, 50k pa leases a brand new 80k MB. Lives 200m away from work place.
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Old 13.09.2019, 19:23
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Re: Process for buying a secondhand leased car

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Quick update: the owner is proposing that I send the money to the lease company and to him by bank transfer, and once it has cleared then we can go and do the change of ownership. I am a little uncomfortable with that idea...
Whichever way you do this, as long as it's a 3-way deal you're opening yourself up for a huge headache. The lease isnt' your problem, why make it?

Maybe tell the "owner" to take out a personal loan to buy the car, then buy it one-on-one for cash. A personal loan can be paid back at any time and without interest beyond the date it's paid back.

If that's not possible I'd walk away. Plenty of potential sellers, at this time of the year everybody wants to clear their inventory for winter.
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Old 13.09.2019, 19:45
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Re: Process for buying a secondhand leased car

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Quick update: the owner is proposing that I send the money to the lease company and to him by bank transfer, and once it has cleared then we can go and do the change of ownership. I am a little uncomfortable with that idea...
That's a stellar idea on his part. You pay for everything, he gets the car free and clear!

(hint: don't do it this way, no matter how trustworthy he seems)
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Old 13.09.2019, 19:59
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Re: Process for buying a secondhand leased car

Watch out for loop holes like unknown damage or extra miles. Best is to sell the car back to the leasing company and buy from them.
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Old 13.09.2019, 20:02
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Re: Process for buying a secondhand leased car

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That's a stellar idea on his part. You pay for everything, he gets the car free and clear!

(hint: don't do it this way, no matter how trustworthy he seems)
Actually, we sort of did it one time this way, but we got physical possession of the car, signed copies of the grey card and his Swiss ID, and a bill of sale. He then went and paid it off, cancelled they grey card, which we received in the mail the next day.

Tom
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Old 15.09.2019, 22:15
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Re: Process for buying a secondhand leased car

Thanks for all the suggestions! Just written to him to suggest he buys out the lease first - will see what he comes back with!
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