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post #1 of 17 Old 04-06-2015, 09:27 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2015
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buying klr, possibly a fishy seller

So I found what seems to be a good deal on a 2009 KLR. 11k miles on it, for $3300. It's all stock, no mods as far as I know, and the only thing wrong with it is that the speedo cable needs fixed. The seller is the 2nd owner. He bought it off a college student who commuted to school with it, but only a few weeks ago. He didn't get any service records from the kid, nor did he get any specific info from him other than it's all stock and it's in great shape. The guy said he's only had it for a few weeks, and that he only bought it to flip it. He didn't get the title transferred to his name. The DMV was already closed today at this point, so I didn't get to go in and ask them about purchasing this motorcycle from the guy when he never transferred the title to his name, and obviously never paid the state sales tax or re-registered it. I told him I wanted it and I'd be back tomorrow with cash (he's holding it for me).

So... doesn't this guy sound a little fishy? I know the bike isn't stolen, and I've got the original owner's name from the title, but not his phone number. So I sent him a message on Facebook, but haven't heard back from him yet.

Does anyone have any advice? I plan on going to the dmv first thing tomorrow to ask them about it. But, what I assume they'll say is that I wouldn't be able to get the title transferred to my name because the current seller's name is not on the title. So if he refuses to do the title transfer to his name, might I still purchase it from him and do the paperwork with the original owner as if I were buying it from him?
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post #2 of 17 Old 04-06-2015, 11:00 PM
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No DMV expert, I, but . . . I think you'd need a CLEAR title signed over to you by the NAMED owner to make this deal legit.

Regardless, visiting the DMV as your first step appears a correct and prudent course, to me.

You want to "disappear" the present owner, and fabricate a transaction with the previous title holder? An innocent-enough ambition, perhaps; however . . . some would label such a scheme, FRAUD.

Typically, I don't think DMVs are amused by frauds perpetrated upon their agency, innocent though their intent might be . . .


A modest proposal: Put the DMV burden on the (actual) SELLER: Negotiate a deal (selling price) with the college kid, and tell him you will pay him that amount upon delivery of the bike AND a clear title properly signed (and notarized, if necessary) over to you.

Playing games with a bogus title could lead to charges of fraud (as mentioned) and perjury (from false statements on the title; mileage, date, owner, etc.).

No value judgment offered; however, seems to me I've read little clauses on the title, like: "Under penalty of perjury, I hereby swear or affirm . . . " If anyone in the chain (titled owner, present college kid custodian, or you) enters false information, you could be in a heap o' trouble . . . maybe even open to charges of CONSPIRACY, if you only know of the gag and go along with it to your advantage, without perjuring yourself.

Your call.

Last edited by Damocles; 04-06-2015 at 11:05 PM.
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post #3 of 17 Old 04-06-2015, 11:00 PM
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Is there something really special about this deal?

My rule is "Never buy anything from anybody where the paperwork is not in order".


It makes no sense that he would refuse to take care of the paperwork unless there is something hinky, like fees, parking tickets, etc. You won't know what it is until you try and take care of the paperwork yourself.

Is it worth the trouble?


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post #4 of 17 Old 04-07-2015, 08:46 AM
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My advice would be - Run Taco!

Speedo cable broken- so is mileage correct? No service records.

I'm no expert on US pricing and, you don't indicate your location, but the price doesn't seem overly hot either.

My Kaw Barn - 2004 KLR, 2006 Concours (sold), 1997 Bayou 400.

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post #5 of 17 Old 04-07-2015, 09:00 AM
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I'd walk away and keep searching for a different deal. Besides, didn't the 2009 KLRs have an issue with possible rubbing on wires causing short circuits?
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post #6 of 17 Old 04-07-2015, 10:30 AM
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I did a deal like this once. I bought a trailer and a go-kart from a seller who had purchased it then was selling it before he registered it.

It was a 2-year hassle to fix. Like you, I couldn't locate the original owner/seller.

The DMV assisted me in re-creating the title. It just took a letter explaining what occurred and a new inspection.

But, whew! What an ordeal.

If you're saving a bundle on the bike, it may be worth it to you. If not (and I don't think that's a great price you're getting), you should keep looking around.

For example, there were one or two low-mileage 2011 models for $3600 in SD's CL right now.
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post #7 of 17 Old 04-07-2015, 10:46 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2015
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Thanks for all the replies and advice. Yes I definitely don't want to buy the thing from him if I can't do it in a legal manner. It's my first time buying a used vehicle from a person that has had the title in hand, so I was a little undereducated on the title transfer paperwork, etc.

I talked to the original owner, who didn't keep his service records, but said it was in excellent condition when he sold it and the speedo did work at that point. He seemed honest and the type who doesn't really do much of his own work on vehicles, such as changing his own oil. And the mileage was correct between what he said was on it and what the odometer read.

So first question is on the price. Is the price not very good? I looked around at other bikes in the area (southern Illinois) and this one did seem to be a bit better deal than the others. I was thinking maybe I'd tell him I'd if he wants to send the title in and get his name on it, then I'll give him 3300. Thoughts?
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post #8 of 17 Old 04-07-2015, 10:54 AM
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bad tacos

This smells like a fish taco with bad fish, not a great deal and no title. If it was me i would keep on walking to something better and legit. Just my 2 cents. At the very least have the popo run the vin and see if its stolen or missing.

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post #9 of 17 Old 04-07-2015, 10:57 AM
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Pricing depends on several things, as you know. Comparable prices for the area, farkles, mileage, condition and what you're willing to spend on it.

It's not an impossible deal, to be sure. If you're a AAA member, they might be able to advise you and unscrew the mess.

Bottom line: You should be able to pay a seller and quickly register a bike. If you can't do that, reconsider the deal OR add that trouble into the cost and make an offer accordingly.

Example of what you can say: "Listen, this is gonna be a mess to figure out. I can only offer you $2700 as it sits." Maybe that will motivate him to get the paperwork done or hand it over as-is and let you fix it.

It really isn't impossible to fix...
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post #10 of 17 Old 04-07-2015, 11:02 AM
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Just a friendly heads up, there is a really nice 08 on ebay that has doo done new tires all the bags and lots of extras for 2800 or buy it now for 3200. I paid 3000 grand for an 07 with 4k miles on it. thinking about selling it and buying it because of all the extras and stuff already done to it
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