How did you get started doing this type of work?
Because I hunted for exotic cars in the US my overseas clients always wanted to have EXACT descriptions of the cars I found for them before they bought them. Those were the very first Pre Purchase Inspections I ever did, now more than 25 years ago. Once I moved to the US most of my clients are still very remote so I have to be very precise in what I put in my Reports.
What types of customers have you worked with?
Full blown Pre Purchase Inspections (PPI) where a remote client wants to find out EXACTLY what a seller is offering. As an independent contractor I stand between the two parties and give a very detailed, dry and very technical rundown of what problems the buyer can expect from the car. As a follow up I offer an escrow service so people run less risk to become the victim of a scam. I'm sorry to say a growing percentage of cars offered are far from what the seller discloses....
Describe a recent project you are fond of. How long did it take?
A 1968 ($115,000) Shelby Mustang Convertible was sold through eBay but the (New York) buyer did not trust the pictures the seller sent him. The seller wanted a $5000 deposit to seal the deal but the buyer hired me and sent me the $5000 to hand it over to the seller after I saw the car. When I got to the Long Beach address I found a pawn shop, the owner told me he DID have that car inside but could not give it out because there was a $50,000 loan against it. After more investigation I found out a pawn shop employee set up the eBay auction and had collected several ($5000) deposits for the same car. I was able to save the buyer a lot of money for something he would have never received!
What advice would you give a customer looking to hire a provider in your area of work?
Never buy anything without a professional inspector's opinion! Better spent a few hundred bucks to make sure than taking the risk of entering into a horrible experience.