Scam Response To My Car Ad on Gumtree

Hey ya peeps,

I am selling my car on Gumtree and I get a response from one of the interested party. Wondering if anyone has experienced something similar. Seems so dodgy and abnormal. Looking forward to your feedback.

Email From the buyer below :

I'm very happy to read back from you. I'm currently at my son's place here in Exmouth-WA for his wedding ceremony coming soon. also, I will not be able to meet you for inspection and collection because of the corona virus isues, I cannot cross the border, I will be here spending my leave with the new family till August 2020, but I have a personal representative agent that will be able to cross all borders and meet you for collection after payment has been made.

I cannot take calls or make one due to my ear barotrauma from my last air flight, I barely hear clear and my email is the best channel for me to communicate. I want the agent to deliver it to my new house in Exmouth-WA before my arrival. I am ready to make the payment so get back to me with the details below :

Account number. BSB. Name. Final price:

That is all I need to make the payment through a secure online bank transfer from my bank to yours. I will transfer the money to your account and my representative courier agent will meet you for the collection and deliver it to my new house in Exmouth-WA after you confirmed the payment.

Please consider my payment method because I cannot travel around with cash, risky and I cannot visit you due to the distance. Best Regards.

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  • +90 votes

    Scam scam scam. Block them.

    • How is it a scam? Please explain.

      • If the seller agreed and provided payment or banking details, the scammer would then send a fake transaction report.

        The scam then works one of three ways.

        • A courier comes and picks up the car and it is effectively stolen
        • The buyer suddenly demands a refund on the fake transaction
        • They "accidentally" pay extra on the fake transaction and demand to be reimbursed - Source

        You can go ahead and string them along if you like, but you'll only be wasting your time.

        Edit: Baysew's link has the exact text that was sent to you, posted in April.. That's a massive wedding party!

        Another one here, posted Feb 11th.

      • +41 votes

        We can't know for sure, but note the following red flags:

        • Broken English - likely based overseas
        • "Representative agent" - who uses these to buy a used car? Have you ever met someone who worked as a "representative agent"?
        • Obscure excuse to not be able to talk on the phone
        • Inconsistent story - first they're spending leave in Exmouth with their sons family, next they're moving there and have bought a house?
        • Buying a car interstate, sight unseen? Unless it's a rare car and they are wealthy I don't see any reason for this. Plenty of cars around in WA I'm sure.

        Need any more reasons?

        They send these out to a million people, get lucky once or twice and make some money somehow.

        • Plus who calls it an air flight? Flight is flying, which you do, in the air …

          • +26 votes

            @kerfuffle: The point of all excuses and poor grammar is to weed out the switched on people and target the vulnerable.

            • @innov: I'd say that's a side effect rather than the intention…

              • @jrowls: its actually deliberately made to sound so silly that it weeds out the switched on people

                • @hellohello123: I mean I know some of them are, but this one in particular has clear signs of being out through a translator and/or written by a person whose first language isn't English. I've dabbled in linguistics and from my experience this reads as indian-english to me. I am happy to be proven wrong but that's what it feels like to me.

                  • @jrowls: im selling something on gumtree and listed it last night, and within 20 mins, I got multiple emails,

                    I can tell from the name and the question its a scam,

                    the name is something really anglo, like Wilson Smith
                    and the question is "is it still available" or "where are you located"

                    I dont even bother reporting them any more, just play with them for a while, or send abusive messages

                    sometimes I reply to the question where are you located

                    ive replied,
                    the moon
                    an oil rig
                    the whitehouse
                    bermuda triangle

                    and they all send the same reply back

                    • @hellohello123: Oh no I totally agree that it's a scam - I simply meant that I believe that the errors are due to language not design.

                      They're everywhere though aren't they…

                      • @jrowls: yeah, you could be right,
                        the fact is that people must be falling for it,
                        so I guess being a nigerian scammer pays

                        had a friend who got scammed somehting like $20k in a fake crypto investment scam,
                        she sent them lots of abuse and "I hope you sleep well at night" and "its dirty money so you will get punsihed" and "I have reported you to the aus fraud police"

                        but im sure the scammers read it and laughed

                    • @hellohello123: I frequently give things away for free on Gumtree and am always shocked about the amount of scam replies I get.
                      You can't scam me for something I'm giving away for free! You come and collect it, or you don't!

                    • @hellohello123: That's quite interesting, for smaller items on Facebook marketplace I normally start with is it still available. Then I would generally ask about condition or perhaps ask for location to gauge whether it's worthwhile continuing negotiations.

          • @kerfuffle: Could be one of those land flights? Or sea flights.

        • broken english? bro dis bra speaks betta glish than us folks

        • all oz politicians sound like that and use agents to respond…

      • Guy 'transfers' you the money or sends you a photoshopped version of the transfer saying its gone through,
        Someone picks up the car
        guy 'reverses' the transfer - this can be done even after it's appeared in your account.

      • OP title

        Scam Response To My Car Ad on Gumtree

        OP post

        How is it a scam? Please explain.


      • 1) They have all these excuses for why they can't be there and can't talk to you.

        2) a "personal representative agent" who talks like that?? Also if they can't cross the border due to coronavirus why would their agent be able to?

        3)despite their previous excuses, at the end they say they can't travel around with the cash and they can't visit you due to distance which contradicts their previous excuses.

        100% scam.

      • These have been doing the rounds for ages.How naive are you?

  • Spiced Ham.



  • Think up a new mail, OP. This one crashed and burned.

  • Obviously a scam, I would be very tempted to register a new email address and waste their time though. Entertainment is few and far between in lockdown.

  • +7 votes

    Member since 2018 and you haven't heard of scams like these OP?

  • I wonder what happens if it's instant payment or you just a 'burner' bank account.

    You then run away with the money…

    • +3 votes

      No chance that you'd see the money in your account.

    • A lot of times it is a real bank account where the money is initially sent from, and the refund for "accidental overpayment" is usually sent back via irreversible means like western union.. In the meantime, whoever owns the real bank account files a fraud case and the money gets reversed back out of the destination account, or the account gets put into negative if the money is withdrawn. So unless you've created a bank account using fake id, you're not going to get away with it.

  • I have blocked this bloke now. Thank you all for the guidance.
    However I have few questions.
    1) let's say I provide BSB & account number.
    The guy transfers the amount. The figures reflect and I even withdraw the amount.
    Then it is safe to proceed with the sale?
    2) I can always ask for his ID ?
    3) why not I report it to the cops and they try and get this prick?

    • It'll be from a stolen bank account. You'll be required to return the money to the bank, else you'll be charged for possess proceeds/handle stolen goods etc…etc…

    • They're probably based os so impossible for the cops to get them, plus no crime committed yet.

      You'll never see the money, they'll have someone at your door to collect and pressure you into giving the car up with a fake screenshot of the deposit.

      • You'll never see the money, they'll have someone at your door to collect and pressure you into giving the car up with a fake screenshot of the deposit.

        Just to mess with these scamming a$$holes, simply give them a fake address to pick up the goods from after they do a fake transfer of funds into you bank account. Hell, even give them a burner bank account.

        • Generally the funds never hit your account. There is always some hiccup, he will have a fake deposit receipt or too much will have been paid to the agent and you will be required to pay the difference before the full funds are released or it will be paid with a cheque deposit that later bounces or simply it will be paid with stolen funds that are later reclaimed as fraud.

        • Give them an address to your local police station LOL

    • 1 ) funds wont hit your account , you will get a email from his "bank" / your "bank" / "paypal". it will state , they are holding the funds + courier fee and that when you send the courier fee to xxx and reply with a screenshot/receipt in a response they will release the funds.
      2 ) they may provide a stolen id
      3 ) better to report at

    • They can use a forged/fake cheque which the bank uses to transfer the funds into your account using your bsb etc. they appear a day later, exchange the goods then the bank will take back the money because the cheque bounced.

    • You're free to go along with this person and see how things pan out if you're interested.

      Just use a spare bank account, wait for funds to land before arranging pick up of the vehicle and agree to meet the "representative" in a public place (e.g. car park, shopping centre etc.) with CCTV coverage and preferably with a friend / family member.

      Guarantee that you'll reach a point where you either need to do something stupid or the "buyer" will give up because they realise the jig is up and they're being strung along.

    • Nar your questions are irrelevant if they want to purchase it sight unseen.

    • This has been an ongoing scam problem on gumtree for years, there is no safe way to deal with them barring meet and cash in hand. any information they give you will be fake or stolen. The other common variants are they are on an oilrig, are on a navy vessel or military base, overseas but buying for a child, relative, friend etc. No one buys a used car sight unseen unless it is a very special car.

      Even if you get funds they can be taken back by authorities once found to be stolen.

  • OP still wondering why it is a scam SMH. OP do not listen to them, reply to him and ask when he wants to finalise the deal.

  • I'm currently at my son's place here in Exmouth-WA


    I want the agent to deliver it to my new house in Exmouth-WA before my arrival

    So what is it, is he there or on his way there?

    • Also he can't use the phone because his ear is FUBAR but he's with his son. Has the son got fuxored ears too?

  • Love the elaborate stories these scam artist come up with. But for every 100 scams 1 will get suckered.

  • While we can all appreciate this is a scam (it's simply not believable with the level of detail involved that doesn't allow you to have anything like a normal transaction) I was also curious about a couple of points people made:

    • How do you 'reverse' a transaction once it has actually finalized/deposited money into your account. My bank has no mechanism I know of to reverse anything (CBA). They advise you have to get the other party to return any funds if it was successfully deposited into another account.

    • Where funds have actually cleared, the point about this being 'stolen funds' and the seller being required to return money doesn't make sense. Return it to who exactly ? If the transaction was carried out in good faith with all the legal requirements met it's not clear what recourse actually exists to allow for funds to be confiscated..

    • If the money actually gets transferred it will be from a hacked account or forged cheque where the amount will be removed shortly after.

      Or else you'll get an email from the courier company telling you to send them some money before the remainder will be released but if course they had no intention of ever giving you any money

      • So if you sell a car and even meet a guy in person - you still have to accept bank transfer into your account (unless the car is less 10k).
        What stops him from sending money to you from stolen/hacked account in that case??

        • There's nothing stopping him - but that sort of scam is different to the one in this thread (which is someone pretending to be too far away to inspect and trying to trick you into giving money to his "courier" or "agent" and is probably in a different country). I wouldn't hand over a car without cash or a bank cheque to avoid any issue there.

      • This is the part I wasn't clear about.

        If an account is 'hacked' then once funds have been transferred (i.e settled) there is no mechanism to undo this. Can you explain how this might be achieved ?

        Where a forged cheque is used, that's different again - the money isn't 'settled' until the cheque has cleared and once it has, there's again no mechanism to unclear it. Your account might show 'pending' money from a deposit but that's not the same as 'settled'

        Emails from courier companies should be meaningless as they aren't a bank (and is yet another different scam).

        I'm just trying to get clarity on how exactly funds can be removed from your account once it's actually gone through (without a court order basically).

        • The bank can choose to do it if they want to. They can talk to other banks and come up with an agreement. It is more effort for them so they would only do it in the clear cut case of am account getting hacked or something similar not just a he said she said sort of scenario (where maybe someone doesn't post the goods or etc)

  • Thanks guys. This was some enlightenment.

  • I tried selling my car for months on gumtree with no success. It's worth the investment to go through carsales.

    • I have bought and sold cars before on gumtree. Had no issues.Infact I already have someone interested to inspect my car this evening And i know it will be sold.

      • Good. They're coming to look at it in person.
        Ask yourself: who even buys a car sight-unseen — from interstate — when Perth is so much closer to them, with no borders to cross?

    • I've sold quite a few cars and I find you get the most responses on Facebook Marketplace but you also get a lot of time wasters.

      • That's good to know for next time, never would have considered FB Marketplace.

      • I've recently sold a motorcycle for 14k on Gumtree. Got fed up with time wasters on both Gumtree and Facebook marketplace and listed it on Bikesales and literally within 1 hour got an enquiry via Gumtree and he ended up buying it straight away. Bikesales was nice enough to refund me when I contacted them that evening.

        Had all sorts of idiots low balling, saying it's their dream bike only to offer 10k lol

        • This sounds exactly like my dream bike, I will give you $10k.

          0r I can transfer $14k if you let my personal representative take it.


        • Similar here. Paid to post on bikesales, no response for days. Put it on gumtree, had a genuine enquiry that night, inspected and sold the next day. Also had a half-dozen scammers from both gumtree and bikesales, so… Have to weed them out.

      • "Hi, is this still available?"

  • I have a personal representative agent that will be able to cross all borders and meet you for collection AFTER payment has been made

    Yeah sure.

    In their yellow submarine.

    Nope, this is no scam. Personal Yellow Submarine is real, not an urban legend.

  • This scam has been going on for a while. The reasons change but it's the same idea. Just ignore and delete.


  • I sold a car earlier this year on gumtree. You will receive a lot of requests similar to this that are scams. Don't trust anyone who doesn't want to meet in person and inspect the car. The sophistication of the scams varies.

    Selling is a frustrating process at times with lots of people low-balling you for price. Don't get caught up in these kind of scams as a result.

  • Who buys a used car without inspecting it?

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