Selling a Car and the Art of Negotiating

Dennis in MA

NES Member
Rating - 100%
25   0   0
Joined
Feb 12, 2007
Messages
33,746
Likes
27,440
Going to wait for the new car to arrive, god knows when that'll be.

I've debated posting it here, but with the NES skinflint crew sometimes I wonder if that's more of a hassle than its worth.
I'll be looking for about 18k.

Best I can do is a half a pack of Trident, 58 cents in change and about a half gram of pocket lint. Take it or leave it, buster! This is quality pocket lint. I know what I've got!
 
Rating - 100%
65   0   0
Joined
May 12, 2013
Messages
2,673
Likes
6,003
Location
Inman, SC
I hope you sent a pic of the $2500 you got paid and replied "SOLD" sorry.
That's one benefit of FB messenger. When you mark an item sold, any conversation you have with buyers automatically send them a notification that the item is sold. Kind of a nice FU feature.
My last two private sales were interesting.

Car #1 was a nice car in decent shape, several years out of warranty with 130k miles. I had it online for about $13k. I had a guy call, ask reasonable questions, and then ask if I would take $11k if I sold it that day. I said that I would, but I wouldn't move past that price. He said he'd come by in a few hours. Showed up on time and, we took it for a drive. I asked where he was from, and he said he lived in Newport, but was originally from Columbia. We pulled into my driveway, he reached into his pocket, and pulled out $11k in $100 bills rolled into a cylinder. I remember thinking that I was glad they didn't have drug sniffing dogs at the bank.

Second time was a newer car, only 2 years old and still in warranty. Had one guy go back and forth with me for a week or two, finally settling on $25k. No problem. Come by Thursday with a cashier's check on a local bank. Guy calls the night before and asks if I can write the bill of sale for $20k. Sorry, no. OK, he'll still be by in the morning. Brings dad with him (dad speaks no English). Dad's holding a cashier's check for $20k. and $5000 in cash. With the son translating, dad again asks for low ball Bill of Sale. Again, no. How about a BoS for $21k? No. $22k? No. Rinse and repeat all the way up to $25k. OK, settle, run to his bank to pull the cash for check (I'd notified them in advance that I'd be coming), and then over to my bank to deposit it. They drive off in the car. And then call me 2 weeks later asking for any pictures I had from the sale because "the car was rear-ended and totaled" and they're having a fight with the insurance company "over a fair settlement value". :rolleyes:
What's the reason you wouldn't budge on a lower BoS? Is there a scam out there that I'm not aware of? I always leave sales price black to be honest. Am I leaving myself open to some scams?
hate buying more than selling. more time wasted. I'm not picky on mechanicals, but bad rust is what I hate. unfortunately here its unavoidable, and most people cant tell how bad it really is.
I'm in the market for a cheapo right now, and I dont throw an offer out there until I look at it. I just looked at one that was near ideal except rust in the worst possible spots. I told the guy I was out unless he was willing to take half bc that's where I was at.
if the body/underside is decent I can get alot of miles out of a shit car.
Milage get crazy in no salt areas. In MA, I wouldn't even consider a car near 200k. Here, I see cars for sale all the time with 300k miles. The car I sold last night had 206k.
 

Broc

NES Member
Rating - 100%
14   0   0
Joined
Sep 18, 2010
Messages
47,029
Likes
86,634
Why do people put OBO on their ads? If I list it as $5k or best offer I'll never see 5k and the bargain hunters see that as an invitation to low ball.
It tells the buyer the seller is charging more than he thinks he can get so you should offer at least $1K less, so he counters with $750 more and end at $500 less.

Then the seller gets angry because the buyer negotiated. LMAO.

In my opinion, if you are honest about what you have and have done your research, there is no need to put "OBO". But most people like to tell themselves they are being honest when they really aren't and are asking for a price they hope they can get but deep inside know they won't.
 

Asaltweapon

NES Member
Rating - 100%
56   0   0
Joined
Dec 21, 2008
Messages
25,277
Likes
22,820
Location
Northern Maine
It tells the buyer the seller is charging more than he thinks he can get so you should offer at least $1K less, so he counters with $750 more and end at $500 less.

Then the seller gets angry because the buyer negotiated. LMAO.

In my opinion, if you are honest about what you have and have done your research, there is no need to put "OBO". But most people like to tell themselves they are being honest when they really aren't and are asking for a price they hope they can get but deep inside know they won't.
Never thought of it like that. Interesting angle.
 
Rating - 100%
65   0   0
Joined
May 12, 2013
Messages
2,673
Likes
6,003
Location
Inman, SC
It tells the buyer the seller is charging more than he thinks he can get so you should offer at least $1K less, so he counters with $750 more and end at $500 less.

Then the seller gets angry because the buyer negotiated. LMAO.

In my opinion, if you are honest about what you have and have done your research, there is no need to put "OBO". But most people like to tell themselves they are being honest when they really aren't and are asking for a price they hope they can get but deep inside know they won't.
Hardest part for me was putting a value on electric issues. 2 brake lights wouldn't work, 3rd brake light would. I replaced a $200 switch thinking that was the issue. Nope. Gave up there. To me, it could be a $1 fix with a missing fuse (I couldn't find a decent picture of what the fusebox should look like, or could be a junk wire harness? I took 1k off for the trouble.
 

Grendizer138

NES Member
Rating - 100%
28   0   0
Joined
Jan 1, 2016
Messages
2,125
Likes
7,404
Location
southcoast
Ugh.

Selling my car in a few months and I'm not looking forward to this.

I thought I'd do the kind thing and offer it up into the family (10yrs old, 100k miles, 4wd with all the safety accessories) and apparently I'm a monster for pricing it slightly higher than what carvana is going to give me.
Not sure if serious, but begs for a parody post!!
 

Brin747

NES Member
Rating - 100%
3   0   0
Joined
Dec 9, 2008
Messages
3,812
Likes
3,426
Location
Somewhere in the woods, NH
Ugh.

Selling my car in a few months and I'm not looking forward to this.

I thought I'd do the kind thing and offer it up into the family (10yrs old, 100k miles, 4wd with all the safety accessories) and apparently I'm a monster for pricing it slightly higher than what carvana is going to give me.

A few years back my dad was getting rid of his old Tundra and my son wanted it. He found out what the dealer was going to give him on trade and offered it to my son for the same. It worked out great for him and I thought it was very fair...
 

snax

NES Member
Rating - 100%
29   0   0
Joined
Dec 1, 2009
Messages
7,635
Likes
9,646
Location
LA - lowell area
That's one benefit of FB messenger. When you mark an item sold, any conversation you have with buyers automatically send them a notification that the item is sold. Kind of a nice FU feature.

What's the reason you wouldn't budge on a lower BoS? Is there a scam out there that I'm not aware of? I always leave sales price black to be honest. Am I leaving myself open to some scams?

Milage get crazy in no salt areas. In MA, I wouldn't even consider a car near 200k. Here, I see cars for sale all the time with 300k miles. The car I sold last night had 206k.
I may be going south this year for a trip. I may budget some $$ and hopefully find something I can drive back.
 

TheGreekFreak

NES Member
Rating - 100%
35   0   0
Joined
Sep 7, 2015
Messages
2,018
Likes
2,350
Another valuable lesson I learned as a teenager was not to get greedy when selling. I've flipped countless things on the side for extra money + fun ever since freshman year of high school. The money is made on the buy, not the sell, yet my inner Greek would unconsciously try to get unrealistic bargains on both ends.

If you have a buyer in cash for a car and they're offer is very fair + close to asking, TAKE IT. Guaranteed sale > squeezing every drop of juice out of a cash buyer.

On a smaller scale, I learned this the painful way when I was gifted a 1 year transferable gift card to a local fancy health club. Had a value of like $800-900 at a time where that money would go a long way for teenage me. Got a few cash offers in the $300-500 range.......but no, lets just leave it an extra week, just an extra $50, someone will offer it......

Well, most of those clubs have since closed and I couldn't sell that membership for a can of Sprite right now [laugh] have kept the certificate in my desk drawer all these years as a reminder that acting like an arab market trader on every deal does not make you a good negotiator, it makes you a greedy ass.

This is more common with buyers who stroke themselves to sleep at the thought of fleecing someone, like it's some big accomplishment to expend a ton of energy to wear out a seller just to pocket some extra scraps.
 

Realtor MA

NES Life Member
NES Member
Rating - 100%
40   0   0
Joined
Mar 28, 2009
Messages
4,492
Likes
1,986
A few years back my dad was getting rid of his old Tundra and my son wanted it. He found out what the dealer was going to give him on trade and offered it to my son for the same. It worked out great for him and I thought it was very fair...
LOL Your Dad got cheated. If he had done the trade he would've saved that portion of the sales tax.

 
Rating - 100%
1   0   0
Joined
Mar 21, 2017
Messages
713
Likes
640
That's one benefit of FB messenger. When you mark an item sold, any conversation you have with buyers automatically send them a notification that the item is sold. Kind of a nice FU feature.

What's the reason you wouldn't budge on a lower BoS? Is there a scam out there that I'm not aware of? I always leave sales price black to be honest. Am I leaving myself open to some scams?

Milage get crazy in no salt areas. In MA, I wouldn't even consider a car near 200k. Here, I see cars for sale all the time with 300k miles. The car I sold last night had 206k.

Around here, I'd rather buy a younger car with more miles than an older car with fewer miles-all else being equal-precisely because of rust.
 
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Nov 3, 2017
Messages
1,131
Likes
1,899
What's the reason you wouldn't budge on a lower BoS? Is there a scam out there that I'm not aware of? I always leave sales price black to be honest. Am I leaving myself open to some scams?
Sales tax is charged on private used car sales in Massachusetts at the time of registration, along with an annual excise tax based on the value of the car. The buyer wants a lower number on the BoS because he is planning on submitting the fake number to the registry for the sales tax and potentially to his town for an excise tax abatement. I don't know what my exposure to participating in his tax fraud may be, but I have no desire to find out.
 
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Nov 3, 2017
Messages
1,131
Likes
1,899
Well, most of those clubs have since closed and I couldn't sell that membership for a can of Sprite right now [laugh] have kept the certificate in my desk drawer all these years as a reminder that acting like an arab market trader on every deal does not make you a good negotiator, it makes you a greedy ass.
I have some stock in an investment account that I keep for just that reason. I bought it about 15 years ago. It went up by more than double in three months. I kept hanging on to let it go higher. Then, the company (a bank) issued a really bad mortgage exposure report, and the stock dropped to 10% of what I bought it for. It's now about 30% lower than what I bought it for 15 years ago.

It's not a ton of money, so I keep it there to remind me of something an office mate once told me:
  • Bulls make money.
  • Bears make money.
  • Pigs get slaughtered.
 

paul73

NES Member
Rating - 100%
2   0   0
Joined
Oct 30, 2020
Messages
10,128
Likes
11,784
Location
MA
Another valuable lesson I learned as a teenager was not to get greedy when selling. I've flipped countless things on the side for extra money + fun ever since freshman year of high school. The money is made on the buy, not the sell, yet my inner Greek would unconsciously try to get unrealistic bargains on both ends.

If you have a buyer in cash for a car and they're offer is very fair + close to asking, TAKE IT. Guaranteed sale > squeezing every drop of juice out of a cash buyer.

On a smaller scale, I learned this the painful way when I was gifted a 1 year transferable gift card to a local fancy health club. Had a value of like $800-900 at a time where that money would go a long way for teenage me. Got a few cash offers in the $300-500 range.......but no, lets just leave it an extra week, just an extra $50, someone will offer it......

Well, most of those clubs have since closed and I couldn't sell that membership for a can of Sprite right now [laugh] have kept the certificate in my desk drawer all these years as a reminder that acting like an arab market trader on every deal does not make you a good negotiator, it makes you a greedy ass.

This is more common with buyers who stroke themselves to sleep at the thought of fleecing someone, like it's some big accomplishment to expend a ton of energy to wear out a seller just to pocket some extra scraps.
I scanned local market as my kid turns 16 soon and it would be nice to get him a 6-8 yr old truck - but what I saw is screaming not just greed but a pure insanity.
I bought and sold some under $5k cars, but have 0 desire even to try any negotiations now.

I would guess it also can be a factor of why people do not respond to ads now. No one is happy now.

To the OP - people expecting to pay $2k for a car advertised at $3k is a totally normal thing.
 
Rating - 100%
65   0   0
Joined
May 12, 2013
Messages
2,673
Likes
6,003
Location
Inman, SC
I scanned local market as my kid turns 16 soon and it would be nice to get him a 6-8 yr old truck - but what I saw is screaming not just greed but a pure insanity.
I bought and sold some under $5k cars, but have 0 desire even to try any negotiations now.

I would guess it also can be a factor of why people do not respond to ads now. No one is happy now.

To the OP - people expecting to pay $2k for a car advertised at $3k is a totally normal thing.
As far as being the buyer, I'm in the market for a 4 wheeler. I saw a 4x4 I liked last week, but the price was about 3k higher than what KBB was saying the value should be. I know KBB isn't the gospel, but it is somewhere to start. I messaged the seller and said hey, I'm willing to pay 500 over KBBs top estimate, and sent a screenshot of KBB. They responded that they were not coming off of their number. I then asked if there were any aftermarket parts on it to justify the price difference I was seeing. The seller said it was bone stock and that the price was high "just like everything else, things are bringing in more right now".
I politely bowed out of the running for it. I will wait. It's a want. Not a need.
 

Mark from MA

NES Member
Rating - 100%
55   0   0
Joined
Jun 4, 2008
Messages
8,472
Likes
6,817
Ive played this selling cheap cars game before my kids got old enough to drive. I'd drive used cars and they were well used when I got rid of them......plenty of douchenozzles to sort thru before selling.

Now.....my cars are still used but nicer and they get handed down to the kids for short money. Problem there is....sometimes I still have to work on them!

But I tell the kids simple things I will help you with, difficult things.....well, youll pay for.....or learn yourself. Im not spending what's left of my life dealing with car bullshit unless its guaranteed to take only an hour or two, like brakes or something like that.
 

free

NES Member
Rating - 100%
22   0   0
Joined
Jan 15, 2015
Messages
2,566
Likes
1,696
Location
In the Data Dump
Sales tax is charged on private used car sales in Massachusetts at the time of registration, along with an annual excise tax based on the value of the car. The buyer wants a lower number on the BoS because he is planning on submitting the fake number to the registry for the sales tax and
The excise tax is not based on the value of the car. Based on original MSRP then a percent of that depending on years since the model year.

The sales tax is based on NADA value not bill of sale fiction.
 
Rating - 100%
14   0   0
Joined
Aug 27, 2007
Messages
15,346
Likes
10,868
Location
Texas
Going to wait for the new car to arrive, god knows when that'll be.

I've debated posting it here, but with the NES skinflint crew sometimes I wonder if that's more of a hassle than its worth.
I'll be looking for about 18k.
but what kind of vehicle is it?
 
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Jan 11, 2015
Messages
6,500
Likes
13,258
Location
Southwest NH
I miss the days of the want advertiser I would always find a $500-$1000 dollar beater with a heater for the winter and most times would end up driving it longer. Good luck finding anything for that price now.

Ahhh...the Want Advertiser was an obsession when I was in my twenties. I waited for the delivery every Thursday at 10:00 AM. I'd start casing the Cumby's parking lot at 9:00, in case it came early. I must have read every single listing , every week, a hundred times over. We kept in in the shop shitter, so everyone got a crack at it.

Around here, I'd rather buy a younger car with more miles than an older car with fewer miles-all else being equal-precisely because of rust.

Ironically, when shopping for women, the exact opposite is true! My god, I wish I learned that lesson twenty years sooner.
 
Rating - 100%
65   0   0
Joined
May 12, 2013
Messages
2,673
Likes
6,003
Location
Inman, SC
Ahhh...the Want Advertiser was an obsession when I was in my twenties. I waited for the delivery every Thursday at 10:00 AM. I'd start casing the Cumby's parking lot at 9:00, in case it came early. I must have read every single listing , every week, a hundred times over. We kept in in the shop shitter, so everyone got a crack at it.



Ironically, when shopping for women, the exact opposite is true! My god, I wish I learned that lesson twenty years sooner.
A7jBk-fCEAQVc9l.jpg
 
Rating - 100%
8   0   0
Joined
Mar 30, 2009
Messages
11,518
Likes
5,858
Location
Green Eggs and...
Still trying to sell my softail. Had a guy tell me how he drove 3 hours — not my problem. I was very fair with the price. Would take 6, was listed at 7, he walked away over $500, didn’t negotiate until he got here. But if anyone wants a softail — new battery and rebuilt carb last year
 
Rating - 100%
8   0   0
Joined
Mar 30, 2009
Messages
11,518
Likes
5,858
Location
Green Eggs and...
Ugh.

Selling my car in a few months and I'm not looking forward to this.

I thought I'd do the kind thing and offer it up into the family (10yrs old, 100k miles, 4wd with all the safety accessories) and apparently I'm a monster for pricing it slightly higher than what carvana is going to give me.

Before the used car craze we sold my wife’s wrangler for 22k. I had family offer me 5k and a trade for some crossover valued at like 7200 bucks.
 
Rating - 100%
65   0   0
Joined
May 12, 2013
Messages
2,673
Likes
6,003
Location
Inman, SC
Still trying to sell my softail. Had a guy tell me how he drove 3 hours — not my problem. I was very fair with the price. Would take 6, was listed at 7, he walked away over $500, didn’t negotiate until he got here. But if anyone wants a softail — new battery and rebuilt carb last year
Details on bike? My buddy and I were talking about bikes just last night. Him and I sold some bikes about 5 years back. Both of us had the hardest time selling. My 2004 Heritage Softil was on market for over a year. I lived on a busy street with a for sale sign, plus Craigslist and ebay. Book on it was 9k. I started at 7500, I finally took 5200. His was like a 99 Road King. Same story. On market forever. He finally took 3500. He is looking to get another bike now and the prices are double for the same years.
Never sell toys you love.

I saw on FB a few years after my sale that the new owner totaled my bike. It was strange, it actually bothered me. I put 80k miles on that bike. Sad to see it ended in the junk yard.
 
Rating - 0%
0   0   0
Joined
Nov 3, 2017
Messages
1,131
Likes
1,899
The excise tax is not based on the value of the car. Based on original MSRP then a percent of that depending on years since the model year.
You can apply for an abatement if you can document that the MSRP they are using is inaccurate or does not relate to the actual value of the car. We did it with my wife's Subaru and got the excise down by about 25%. PITA to do it every year, but it can be done.
 
Rating - 100%
3   0   0
Joined
Apr 25, 2013
Messages
2,952
Likes
1,836
Location
Mexico.....Missouri
I didn't read all three pages but I feel ya. I reverse lowball. Price is 3k....ill give you 2,500......nope, price is 3,500...heyyyy you said 3k.....thats right, 3k, I'm not taking less and you don't wanna pay more.

Fwiw, when I sell stuff, I price it at a good deal, and they know it, and I don't budge. I'm like, "ok, later.man, I got three dudes in line, see ya."

I dont.lowball others either, I hate it, its tacky.

Now, if I show up and your "mint" vehicle has dents and a trashed interior, yea, ill bring that up, but I don't just lowball people to save a few bucks.
 
Top Bottom