A curber is an unlicensed individual or business selling vehicles for profit, often while posing as a private seller. Some operate more openly, usually also ignoring local bylaws, refusing to get a business licence or pay tax on their income. Curbers offer none of the protections the law provides for purchases from a Vehicle Sales Authority licensed dealer.
How do I know if I’m dealing with a curber?
- You find more than one vehicle listed with the same phone number, and the dealer licence number is not shown
- The seller says, “Which one?” when you call about the ad
- The seller doesn’t have the original registration form
- The name on the registration is not their name, so they’ll say they are selling the vehicle for a friend or family member
- The vehicle year, make, model, body style or colour don’t match the description on the vehicle’s registration form
- The vehicle doesn’t match the description given when the Vehicle Identification Number or VIN is decoded
- Curbers usually insist on meeting at a parking lot or mall, or bringing the vehicle to you, never at their home
- The seller insists on cash and says they’re in a rush to make a sale
What if I bought from a curber and have a problem?
If you purchased from an unlicensed seller, the VSA has very limited authority to assist you. However, action may be taken to protect future buyers.
Step two: If you believe the person you purchased from is operating as an unlicensed motor dealer, report them using the Report an Unlicensed Motor Dealer “Curber” Form 110 kB .
Who needs to be licensed as a dealer?
Anyone selling more than five vehicles per year is automatically deemed to be a dealer under BC law. However, the sale of even one vehicle to a retail consumer as a business activity may require a licence.