Melbourne Weekend Car Sales And Tyre Kickers.

I didn’t realise what a hassle it is for some private car sellers selling their vehicles, especially females dealing against seasoned players.  I like to keep things simple in the buying and selling process of vehicles and generally follow the same processes as I and many others do.  Its just keeping things simple.

I was visiting my friend in Melbourne recently on a weekend who was trying to sell her car and man, were there some tyre kickers out.  She had advertised her vehicle on gumtree.  Interestingly she hadn’t got the fake vehicle buyer trick trying to scam money out of her.  The fake vehicle buyers seemed to have dropped off the scene a bit (dunno).  This was where people would make an offer but say its for the wife or daughter and im currently overseas.  Its her birthday in the coming days and I will send the money.  The next step would be to email a fake transfer notice and then say ooops I transferre $500-$1000 too much, i have an emergency come up can you send by Western Union this money.  Trust me, theres the bank transfer information, your money will arrive in 2-3 days.

This time I saw some real, what could be described as assholes out there looking for vehicles.  Where has common decency gone in Australia? One guy came and of course went from $5,900 (vehicle advertised at) to running the car down and mentioning about the best of the best he was going to put on the vehicle.  Best tyres, best this and that.  Hey thats not the sellers issue.  He was quite pushy towards her and she came in the house to ask me a question and within 30 seconds he was constantly ringing the door bell.

So it goes he offers $4,500.  As my friend was wanting to get rid of the vehicle she said yes.  There was around $700 registration due and some repairs required to get the road worthy.  then he said, I only have $4,300 cash.  Take it or leave it and walked away.  She said ok.  Then he said I want to do the roadworthy certificate (more on this soon), then went to the car and came back with $4,000 cash.  At which point she said go to the ATM and stop wasting my time.

I haven’t bought a vehicle where I would take on the responsibility of getting a Roadworthy Certificate (RWC).  Sellers in Victoria have to provide a RWC to the buyer but it is possible reading through forums like whirlpool for the responsiblity of getting a RWC to be borne on by the buyer – VicRoads seemingly have no problems with this if its done within the 14 days (as the transfer through VicRoads has to be done within 14 days).  The buyer said he would go and do the roadworthy certificate to her.

Exemptions for the seller providing a roadworthy certicate (in Victoria) are for various reasons including sales of vehicles to spouse, family member etc.

So what are some things that can be learned out of this:

  1. Get the Roadworthy certificate in place BEFORE you advertise.  Theres no debate then about the condition of the vehicle.  RWC have a lifespan but of course if you are interested to sell your car at market price you will get rid of it within the 30days.
  2. Don’t get boggled by the buyers fluff.  Saying that he will exhange the tyres for the best etc means nothing.  It only adds more data to the mix and confuses things.
  3. The buyer saying HE will get a roadworthy.  Its not clear how this would be done.  On forums people do transfer registered vehicles where the buyer will do the job of getting a roadworthy certificate and present to Vic Roads within 14 days when the transfer is done.  I just don’t like that.  VicRoads is clear the seller is to provide a RWC and I’ve always gone along with due process.  I just think that its a way a person can use leverage against a seller to take a vehicle, come back and say we checked and it will need “x” thousands of dollars spent on it and knock the price down more or get the money back saying some BS that if you look on the vicroads website it says clearly that the seller is to provide a roadworthy certificate.  In my books, I would never sell my vehicle/s where i would be relying on the buyer to get a RWC.  Make the time to drop the vehicle in.
  4. Watch the ratcheting down approach.  I wouldn’t deal with someone who ratchets.  A deal was reached at $4,500 in the exmple, then dropped to $4,300… then came back and said I only have $4,000.  Get a deposit, usually enough to cover a good advertisement for example $100 and say when you have the money come back.  Someone who is genuine won’t keep lowering price after its agreed let alone come back from the car $300 short.  Most people would know how much cash they had in their cars before going to look … right?  Its all just more BS.
  5. Don’t get pressured, feel pressured.  If things are moving too fast, STOP.  Just take a breather.  I like to sell cars where I feel good about the process, not rushed, things left unchecked and you are going with the flow of another tyre kicker.  Thats not a good negotiating position to be in.
  6. Know your sale price beforehand – Do your homework.  Check out carsales, carpoint, drive and gumtree for comparisons so you know your ideal price and your worst/ lowest take price.  Once you know your lowest take price, thats it.  Stick to it.  Try and find out information online about recalls, common problems etc, any negatives that you can counter in a negotiation process.
  7. Book value is worthless.  It seems these guys are a little slow on the market.  Many, Many listed cars are much higher in their supposed book value eg. glasses guide, redbook etc.  I wouln’t pay the $20 for a valuation “certificate” that these companies offer. Its just as easy to do a comparison online from cars being advertised for sale and where your model fits in by features, year, mileage, condition etc.
  8. Advertising – take as many detailed, clear pictures as possible.  Get the car cleaned up and detailed.  Write as much detail as you can, get specific.  Try and put in something a little different as to how the car differentiates from another model for example, many buyers might not know that a SE has a bigger motor, cruise control and full leather seats over a plain vanilla model of the same car.  That will help explain why your asking price is a little higher.  Point out those salient points in the advertisement.  Get out the log books what was done.
  9. Be prepared to walk away.  If someone is playing games … stop.  I’ve sold to people who appreciate the car not trying to bang every last dollar out of the deal.  If your realistic on price, there will be a buyer out there.

Buyers are out there … but the golden rule is be prepared.

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