Selling My Car - Buying a Vehicle

DGS49

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There are a number of reasons why one would not want to deal with a car dealer when buying or selling a used car, and reasons to go with a dealer under some circumstances. The financial "bottom line" is that dealers pay very little for the cars they buy and charge whatever premium they can for the cars they sell. So if you sell your car to a dealer - whether you call it a sale or a "trade in" - you getting a minimal amount for it, and when you buy a car from a dealer, you are generally paying top dollar.

I recently sold my PT Cruiser. While it is a wonderful car loaded with options and in perfect condition, I knew it was going to be a tough sell because it has a stick shift. Two potential sales were actually killed by wives who raised a stink because they couldn't drive a stick (other than a broomstick), and weren't interested in learning how. I started out asking for a premium price, lowered it, lowered it again, then finally bought my replacement vehicle and dropped the price to what I would have charged for a nothing, no frills car in questionable condition. And threw in a bunch of extras that I didn't want to have to deal with (4 winter tires on aluminum wheels, etc). But still, it was well above what I would have received in a trade with a dealer.

I advertised it on AutoTrader-dot-com, CarSoup-dot-com, and on Craigslist. All ads were lengthy, informative, and contained several pictures of the inside and outside of the car. In about 4 weeks I got four scam responses and 5 legitimate responses - all of them from the Craigslist ads, which I updated every week. Indeed, all of the inquiries came within a few hours of the times when I re-published the ad. All of the responders said they weren't particularly interested in a PT Cruiser but saw my ad and were interested based on the pictures and my description. I like AutoTrader, but it didn't generate a single response in four weeks. Same for CarSoup. Bummer.

Searching for my Ridgeline, I searched AutoTrader, Cars-dot-com, Craigslist, and CarSoup-dot-com. Ridgeline's may be a unique vehicle in that ALL of the people selling them seem to have a very inflated opinion of what their vehicles are worth. Both the dealers and the private sellers seem to be asking inflated prices (based on internet valuations), and don't seem to care that their prices are out of touch with all of the published information around. But I take this as a good sign for the vehicle generally. Even the old ones with a lot of miles are tight and solid, and run like a top, so their sellers remember what they paid for them (a lot), and expect a lot in return when they sell them.

Also, MANY Ridgelines are put up for sale with between 85-110 thousand miles on them, WITHOUT having had their timing belts replaced (a thousand dollar item at most Honda dealers). I suspect they are selling them partly BECAUSE the timing belt is due, and they ALL give you that deer-in-the-headlights stare when you ask if it has been replaced (NOTE: usually the water pump, tensioner, and serpentine belt are replaced at the same time, which brings the cost up to a grand).

The Ridgelines advertised on the car websites carried premium prices, whether being sold by people or dealers, and many of them had very high miles (140k plus). The one I bought was advertised on Craigslist by a private party at a price that was semi-reasonable and not negotiable, because they had a loan to pay off, and no money to add (or so they claimed). Although the truck seemed to be in perfect condition otherwise, it needed the belt replaced and the tires were borderline. I mentally added those to costs to the asking price and the number was still a couple thousand below what a dealer would have charged for the same vehicle, so I found it acceptable. My mechanic checked it out thoroughly and it passed PA state inspection (including emissions).

All things considered, I paid $11,000 to upgrade from a 2006 PT Cruiser GT to an '07 Ridgeline RTL. I think that was a couple thousand better than I would have done if I had simply found the same Ridgeline at a Honda Dealer and traded my PTC. But maybe I'm kidding myself.

BTW, I like the Ridgeline more and more every time I drive it. Got over 20mpg on the first tank of gas.
 

Pogo

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Hm. Bummer about the stick. I won't even consider a car with what I call autonomic transmission. :puke:
I think it should be required to get a license actually.

Gotta say, I'm surprised Craigslist still exists. I haven't gone there in years because when I did all I got was spammed.

I've had good luck shopping on eBay. In fact my first eBay purchase was a car (Saturn SW2) and turned out to be the best car I ever had (I understand it's still on the road and it had well over 400,000 miles on it when I sold it). Got a couple of cars since then from eBay too -- one of them I went to check out (a reseller), rejected it but then found another vehicle on the same lot.

The CarFax/AutoCheck analysis makes all the difference versus the old daze.
 

S.J.

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I just sold my truck on Craigslist and got real close to my asking price. Probably could have gotten more but I wanted a quick sale. Sold it within 24 hours after posting the ad.
 

gipper

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I just sold my truck on Craigslist and got real close to my asking price. Probably could have gotten more but I wanted a quick sale. Sold it within 24 hours after posting the ad.
I also recently sold a car on Craigslist. Got what I wanted and did so quickly.
 

Jarlaxle

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Hm. Bummer about the stick. I won't even consider a car with what I call autonomic transmission. :puke:
I think it should be required to get a license actually.
The manual transmission will be gone in 20 years, unfortunately.

Gotta say, I'm surprised Craigslist still exists. I haven't gone there in years because when I did all I got was spammed.
CL is still huge...I have bought 2 motorcycles & my Dakota there, and sold my Jeep...my wife also bought 2 MC's and sold one. We found a place to live there.

I've had good luck shopping on eBay. In fact my first eBay purchase was a car (Saturn SW2) and turned out to be the best car I ever had (I understand it's still on the road and it had well over 400,000 miles on it when I sold it). Got a couple of cars since then from eBay too -- one of them I went to check out (a reseller), rejected it but then found another vehicle on the same lot.

The CarFax/AutoCheck analysis makes all the difference versus the old daze.
Carfax is worthless.
 

Pogo

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Hm. Bummer about the stick. I won't even consider a car with what I call autonomic transmission. :puke:
I think it should be required to get a license actually.
The manual transmission will be gone in 20 years, unfortunately.
I hope you're wrong but I have to admit it's possible. After all when has the car industry ever made what drivers want. Sad but true.

Gotta say, I'm surprised Craigslist still exists. I haven't gone there in years because when I did all I got was spammed.
CL is still huge...I have bought 2 motorcycles & my Dakota there, and sold my Jeep...my wife also bought 2 MC's and sold one. We found a place to live there.
It was a complete waste of time for me, and that was several years ago. Nothing but spam. Years before that it was worthwhile, but that's a long time ago now. Have they done anything to fix the incessant spam?

I've had good luck shopping on eBay. In fact my first eBay purchase was a car (Saturn SW2) and turned out to be the best car I ever had (I understand it's still on the road and it had well over 400,000 miles on it when I sold it). Got a couple of cars since then from eBay too -- one of them I went to check out (a reseller), rejected it but then found another vehicle on the same lot.

The CarFax/AutoCheck analysis makes all the difference versus the old daze.
Carfax is worthless.
You mean CarFax specifically? I meant the generic service, I forget what they're all called. It's a godsend when you're inspecting a vehicle you don't know. Gives a lot of history. I've turned away from many a prospect because of what such a service revealed. And since it started I haven't gotten burned. That certainly was not the case before these services existed -- it was a crapshoot.
 

Jarlaxle

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My only problem on CL was someone not looking at locations: I got a call on my Jeep from someone in a town with the same name...but in Montana instead of New Hampshire. Had trouble putting pictures in the ad, but that probably says more about my incompetence with computers than anything else.

Considering that Carfax didn't show any damage history on my F-350 (at least two serious wrecks) and showed my stepfather's Concorde as a rebuilt wreck (typo...someone seems to have pout in his ~$2000 repair after hitting a deer as $20,000), it's useless. Carfax isn't a crapshoot...it's just CRAP. I can tell more about a vehicle by spending 20 minutes looking it over than any Carfax report.
 
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My only problem on CL was someone not looking at locations: I got a call on my Jeep from someone in a town with the same name...but in Montana instead of New Hampshire. Had trouble putting pictures in the ad, but that probably says more about my incompetence with computers than anything else.

Considering that Carfax didn't show any damage history on my F-350 (at least two serious wrecks) and showed my stepfather's Concorde as a rebuilt wreck (typo...someone seems to have pout in his ~$2000 repair after hitting a deer as $20,000), it's useless. Carfax isn't a crapshoot...it's just CRAP. I can tell more about a vehicle by spending 20 minutes looking it over than any Carfax report.

Of course you can.

What an obnoxious douchebag you are.
 

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