Sacramento, California (NAPSI) - To help protect yourself when buying a used car, watch out for curbstoners.

What Are Curbstoners?

These are people who sell cars that don’t belong to them, many from scrap yards or towing impounds. They pose as private sellers but are actually unlicensed dealers. This practice is illegal in most states and goes around many of the safeguards that are in place to protect used-car buyers. By some estimates, as many as one in 10 car advertisements on popular websites may be by curbstoners. So be careful, because often, such cars come with hidden problems.

What You Can Do

To be able to buy with more confidence, it helps to:

• Take a test-drive—listen for weird noises, check the acceleration and braking.

• Have a mechanic inspect the vehicle.

• Get a Carfax Vehicle History Report. So you can know more about the car before buying. You can get a Carfax Report and learn more at