By on June 3, 2015

E'rybody tryin' ta get my money

Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to a new column I’d like to call: You’re an asshole if you do this. This can cover a wide range of automotive topics, including using a stack of keywords at the bottom of your Craigslist ad that’s longer than the actual ad itself.

But today, the topic is people who argue about the price after they’ve already bought the car. This has never happened to me, but I’ve heard stories about it happening to some people. After several minutes of serious thought, I’ve decided that I think it’s one of the most ridiculous things that we humans can do to one another, aside from parking in that little cross hatch space between the disabled parking spots.

Here’s what I mean. Let’s say you buy a car from somebody. We’ll call it a Honda Prelude, because this is the kind of thing that people buying used Preludes would do.

Now, you’re told your entire life used car sales without a written warranty are as-is transactions. This means you buy the car, you pay the money, and you have no recourse against the seller when it turns out there’s an entire family of capuchin monkeys living in the taillight assembly.

This is why car enthusiasts generally tell people who aren’t very knowledgeable about cars to get a mechanical inspection before the buy a vehicle. Because what happens is, normal people show up at a car dealer, and they listen to the salesman talk about how the air conditioning simply needs a recharge, and they think it’s fine, and they go home, and they discover their Freon is actually a couple of melted Skittles.

Craigslist Honda Prelude

So anyway, here’s what happens. You’re buying a Honda Prelude and you show up at the house of the guy who’s selling it. He tells you about how he loves his Prelude, and he thinks it’s so cool, and his kids don’t want him to sell it, but he needs the money for his ex-wife, and also he’s starting a turnip farm, and a rock band, and BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH. So you take it out for a test drive, and you spend some time behind the wheel, and you think this is a pretty damn good car. So you give the guy whatever a used Prelude costs, maybe a few grand, and you go home to your house with your used Prelude title and, presumably, four mismatched tires.

Then the problems start. A few days later, the car overheats. The engine starts making funny noises. The radio doesn’t work. The rear seats turn out to be just crumpled up bundles of the guy’s dirty underwear. So what do you do?

The answer is: absolutely nothing. You bought a used car with used car problems, and you agreed to a used car sale with no used car warranty. Now you’re stuck with this Prelude, and if you want it to be half-decent, you’d better start spending money on skilled mechanics, and automotive electronics experts, and maybe a dry cleaner.

But here’s the problem. Not everyone does this. What some people do is they start calling the seller and insisting that YOU SOLD ME AN AWFUL CAR and demanding their money back, forgetting that they purchased a used car in as-is condition, and their legal recourse starts and ends with the phrase: Did the seller make you any guarantees?

This is, ultimately, an issue with personal responsibility. Yes, the seller may have sold you a bad car. But here’s the thing: he isn’t selling it because he wants to keep driving it. He’s probably selling it because he just used it to mow down a family two counties over.

No, I’m kidding. He’s probably selling it because he knows it has issues, and he wants the damn thing gone. Even if he tells you some sob story about how he wants to keep it, but he needs the money for a procedure for his daughter, and you ask what procedure, and he says a lobotomy, he’s probably selling it because it’s crap. And it’s your responsibility, as the buyer, to figure out exactly what’s wrong with the vehicle before you plunk down your money to own it.

Now, some of you will say a shady seller deserves some sort of punishment, and maybe this is true. When I’m selling something, I try to be as up-front and honest about it as humanly possible, disclosing every single fault or flaw, along with all the benefits and selling points. But here’s the thing: not everyone is like this. You certainly can’t assume a guy selling a used Prelude on Craigslist is like this. And so if you decide to take the gamble and roll the dice, you have to live with the numbers that come up.

Next time you’ll remember to get a mechanical inspection.

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163 Comments on “You Can’t Argue The Price After You’ve Bought the Car...”


  • avatar
    danio3834

    Pretty standard these days. That’s why modern phones have features that block numbers.

  • avatar
    twotone

    Whenever I privately sell a car, the buyer and I sign two copies of the sales agreement which includes the following:

    The above-described vehicle is sold “AS IS” and “WITH ALL FAULTS”. Buyer hereby acknowledges, and Seller hereby expressly disclaims any and all warranties, either expressed or implied, including any implied warranties of merchantability, and neither assumes nor authorizes any other person to assume for it any liability in connection with the sale of this vehicle. Any representations or statements that may have been made regarding the automobile have no bearing on the sale unless specifically included in writing in this Agreement.

    This prevents problems from occurring after the sale.

    • 0 avatar
      onyxtape

      From the experience of a friend, it’s also useful to add some verbiage about not being responsible for injuries, damage to property, etc. and that buyer must furnish their own insurance. Then put a date/time stamp on it. Some guy literally totaled the car leaving the parking lot where the transaction took place, and all parties involved had a field day with their respective insurance companies.

    • 0 avatar
      JK43123

      Not really. I had someone insist it meant all faults the day you bought it but the seller would cover any FUTURE repairs. Yeah right.

      John

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      I’ve never had any real issues selling any vehicle or bike. My 1st truck I sold to an 18 yr old who travelled with a buddy to see it. They miscalculated on their cash and did not have gas money to get home. I spotted them a 100. They promised to send me the money. I never expected to see or hear from them again. A week or so later the guys mom mailed me a cheque and thanked me for trusting her son.

      I sold 2 bikes to guys over the phone. Both guys lived 5-600 miles away. I’ve sold quite a few dirt bikes without any issues.

      Maybe I’ve been lucky.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      I do this, the bill of sale with this language. Also acts as a receipt. Just print two copies and each of us gets one.

      But I’m also honest when I list things. Normally people are -surprised- the car is nicer than they expected when they see it. It’s how I can sell stuff quickly – pics and honesty. Oh, and I actually CLEAN the damn car before they see it.

      Edit: Seems also some people don’t know what a bill of sale is, and I have to explain it. At the BMV in Ohio, they will ask to see one if the car is coming out of state, by the way. Indiana don’t care none.

  • avatar
    Shinoda is my middle name

    I chalk this phenomenon up to three things:

    1. Divorce in America. Dads are the ones from whom kids learn a.) about cars in general and b.) about how to negotiate and buy things (or how not to…as the case may be.) Absentee dads obviously can’t teach their kids anything. Every-other-weekend dads are generally happy just to spend time with their kids that “how cars work” and “how to buy things” is so far down the conversation/activity list that the topic will never come up.

    2. The General Decline of our Education system. “Caveat emptor” was one of the first lines I learned to decipher in Latin class. Few schools teach kids how to balance a checkbook or create a family budget or what a mortgage is or what taxes are. So how is a young person supposed to learn about how to make sure they don’t get screwed on a major purchase like a car?

    3. Liberalism in general. Kids grow up these days thinking the world owes them ‘justice’…which means, ‘I take no responsibility. If something bad happens to me, it’s someone else’s fault..I’m a victim.”
    Most people just DON’T learn how to watch out for their own interests because they are taught it’s the government’s role to make sure all their needs are taken care of.

    In short, Liberalism turns people into arseholes, (since liberalism is largely responsible for the decline in the educational system and for policies which encourage/enable the breakup of the family unit.) Funny how the pernicious effects make their way into every aspect of life…including the buying and selling of used cars.

    Just connecting the dots for you.

    Yep, already know haters out there are gonna lambaste the heck out of my opinion here….if it even gets past moderation. <> The Truth hurts, even when it is The Truth About Cars.

    • 0 avatar
      Mercury Mark 75

      As a teacher I must at least counter your second point. In Illinois at least, all high school students are required to take consumer ed. In this class you must balance a check book, do a mock tax return, be able to explain how compound interest works, what a mortgage is, how credit cards work, create a budget, and various other topics.

      The difference between today’s kids and those from 20+ years ago are that credit is given out more freely and the internet allows the meme that they are dumb to fester. I suggest looking further into the tests that rank various countries education systems. In the last round of them, Massachusetts would have ranked 9th in the world if it were allowed to be separated from the US.

      • 0 avatar
        CJinSD

        Ninth place! Let’s take a victory lap.

      • 0 avatar
        cal325

        In California students are not required to learn anything about personal finance. This made the first time I filed taxes intimidating. Fortunately I had my parents who could help me work through it. Everything else other than balancing a checkbook I have had to learn on my own. I have not yet had to write a check so I have not figured that out. The public school education system up through high school sucks in California. You can graduate knowing essentially nothing.

      • 0 avatar
        Scoutdude

        Unfortunately that is not the norm across the country. Many years ago when I was in school we had a required class in HS with similar curriculum. I was rather disappointed that my kids did not have a similar class requirement and I specifically moved to this district because it is one of the consistently best rated district in our area where there are homes for under a million that are not tear downs/studio condos.

    • 0 avatar
      Jimal

      1. Because children raised by people who hate each other or where one parent physically abuses the other (or them) are so much more stable or grounded than kids raised in a divorce.

      3. Conservatives get divorced and duck responsibility just like everyone else.

      In short, you’re just an idiot. A myopic idiot.

      • 0 avatar

        LOL- married over 25 years here with 3 kids that could not care less about cars. I refuse to take the blame. I blame my wife.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Its a bigger problem than both of you touch upon.

      • 0 avatar
        redav

        1. Out of curiosity, what percentage of divorces do you attribute to escaping abuse?

        3. Attack the real flaw in the claim, which is the association of liberalism with lack of responsibility. “Social justice” and liberalism are not the same thing. Furthermore, you incorrectly associate failure to take responsibility with divorce (#1), which was not one of his claims.

        Idiot or not, calling him one doesn’t demonstrate anything while successfully refuting arguments does.

    • 0 avatar
      carguy

      I agree on your second point about the decline of education. This is particularly a problem in red states that seem to have taken the view that all education is elitist, have slashed their education budgets and refuse any federal initiative that might reveal their incompetence by comparing their students to those of other states. After all, how can we expect an education system to teach kids about selling cars when they are too busy denying evolution and convincing parents that sex education is the work of the devil?

      • 0 avatar
        redav

        I don’t think your assessment is correct. I have never seen a correlation between vocational skills/finance/consumer protection and evolution. If by “comparing” you are referring to the myriad of standardized tests, pretty much everyone ‘on the ground’ can easily demonstrate that such emphasis is bad for the kids. Also, having lived in a variety of red states, I have yet to see any attitudes of education being “elitist.”

    • 0 avatar
      beastpilot

      Nice, effective troll that I will proceed to fall for.

      The percentage of children living with a single parent has been basically flat since 1990. So I’m assuming this is a rant about how good it was 30 years ago.

      Also very bizarre that while “liberals” love their divorces, conservatives take advantage of getting divorced more often than liberals do.

      • 0 avatar
        bball40dtw

        I think we can say that as a country, we suck at marriage. No let’s stop spending so much damn money to get married and unmarried.

        • 0 avatar
          beastpilot

          Can’t have it both ways- the cohabitation rate is going way up as the divorce rate is declining, but supposedly America is falling apart.

          Remember, liberals love divorce, hate marriage unless it’s two dudes, and living in sin is awesome. Those are the things ruining america. Getting married, staying married, and having lots of kids is the way to save the country (via getting people to understand the idea of an AS-IS sale. Just connecting the dots!)

          • 0 avatar
            RideHeight

            “Getting married, staying married, and having lots of kids is the way to save the country”

            People used to do that. Must not have worked.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Divorce/cohabitation is just a symptom of the greater problem of continued breakdown of society as we knew it.

          • 0 avatar
            redav

            I personally believe that a strong, permanent family is great for society, and that a weakening family, for whatever reason, has a negative effect.

            If possible, yes, I would prefer that all kids be raised by both their parents who would love, care, & provide for them. Yes, I would prefer people who get married stay married by fixing whatever issues they have so that their partnership works instead of deteriorates.

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          That’s right, just stop getting married. Live together 5+ years and see if you can handle that shiz. Most of you all can’t.

      • 0 avatar
        CJinSD

        Considering we’re talking about the preponderance of defective adults today, it does follow that baby boomers were the first generation to fail at family life.

        • 0 avatar
          RideHeight

          Yep. Widespread education and opportunity kind of put the kibosh on a dutiful peasantry.

          Not enough, though. Hence all the formerly nice neighborhoods with 6 cars in & around each driveway.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      Actually it was my Mother who taught me about cars. She always had cool cars when I was a kid.

    • 0 avatar
      Minnesota Nice

      This has nothing to do with liberalism. I bleed blue and I don’t ‘expect’ anything.

      Why is it that conservatives have a way of turning everything non-political into a political argument. Stop it.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      Shinoda is my middle name

      – So we can blame Obama and in a year ol’ Hillary for anyone getting fleeced on a used car purchase!

      Talk about grass roots astroturfing. LOL

    • 0 avatar
      ckb

      “Yep, already know haters out there are gonna lambaste the heck out of my opinion here”

      FYI: if your post includes a preemptive rebuttal it means you’re a troll.

    • 0 avatar
      carguy949

      Greetings, Shinoda, fellow liberal. That is some brilliant conservative parody. Cheers!

    • 0 avatar
      kvndoom

      Thanks for your insight Rush.

      • 0 avatar
        golden2husky

        Though at least Rush tries to defend his opinions, even if comically so. But he can earn a good living at blabbing his myopic opinions…so he’s the ultimate troll.

    • 0 avatar
      mr.cranky

      @Shinoda,

      Whatever you say, James ‘O Keefe.

      Wrong forum. The Fox News forum is ————————> That way.

  • avatar
    partsmark

    I sell used parts for a living. I deal with this everyday. A good example is a 00 civic engine we sold with … 203k miles. You should have used it for a core to build but…. We priced it at $300 because of the miles and the fact the car drove in for $175. Dealers will buy these to limp a car over the block all day long. A lady wants it for $200.. Fine… we do that but in situations like this there is no warranty, which is normally 30 days. Flash forward 5 months later. Engine is dropped off the back of a pickup truck in our parking lot and a 325 lb woman who just stepped out of a reality show is yelling “I want my money back” over and over to no one in particular. What’s that piece of paper in her hand? Oh, it’s the original receipt, stamped and initialed with “AS-IS NO WARRANTY – EXT WARRANTY REFUSED” in big red letters.. It happens every single day….

    And you can push an engine out of a pickup truck yourself, but you can’t get it back in as easy. And it’s poor form to ask the guy you just called a whole string of 4 letter words to help you. But bonus points for trying!

  • avatar
    eggsalad

    I once sold a $500 Chevy Nova, the kind that was pretty much a Corolla. The guy came back 20 minutes later, telling me it was overheating and demanding his money back.

    Seeing as it had never overheated on me, I pulled (formerly) his 5 Benjamins out of my pocket and offered them back. He was flabbergasted that I’d do it, so he took 4 of them and let me keep one.

    I spent $10 on a new radiator cap and sold it again the next day for $500.

    • 0 avatar
      Land Ark

      I did something similar. Sold my rusty Maxima on eBay and sold it to some kid. A few days later his mom calls and says it’s got a blown head gasket and wanted some money back to pay to fix it. Knowing eBay’s rules I figured I’d have to give it back anyway if they complained so I asked how much. I think it was about 40% (I sold it for less than $2k).

      Joke’s on them though since I was prepared to give it away if no one bid on it.

  • avatar
    kablamo

    As a two-tme buyer of used Preludes, I object to the phrase “because this is the kind of thing that people buying used Preludes would do”.

    Despite this, I enjoyed the article and its elaborate explanation of the term AS IS. I blame loose return policies in retail for giving people false hope.

  • avatar
    319583076

    Who gives their phone number to strangers? They’re called burners, this is what they’re for.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      Most people who sell things on Craigslist? I have no idea what you’re talking about, but feel like I should.

      • 0 avatar
        319583076

        Burners = no-contract cell phones available at fine retailers everywhere, in the popular imagination they are connected to criminal elements for obvious reasons.

        The last time I bought one, the heavyset, hirsute cashier shot a quizzical look at me and mentioned that he used these *only* when selling items on Craigslist. I responded in the affirmative, although I’m still unsure if his intention was to expose my motive or perhaps to insinuate his.

    • 0 avatar
      greaseyknight

      A Google Voice number is free, and works very well if you have a smart phone. Seamless calling and texting, and you can turn off any notifications to your phone once the item sells.

    • 0 avatar
      TMA1

      There’s also the Burner app for smartphones. They’ll give you a random number in any area code you want, and you can use it over the internet. About 5 bucks a month, I’ve used it to sell things or when car shopping. I’m not giving out my actual number to dealers.

  • avatar
    Superdessucke

    A major component of this is that people who buy cars like used Preludes want them as cheap as possible. They don’t understand that a used Prelude with a ton of issues will present a much larger overall investment than one sorted and maintained.

    So in other words, they’ll jump on the $2k Prelude that is a POS rather than the $3k nice Prelude which has been maintained. Then, $4k into their “ownership experience” (i.e. about 3 months), they’re bewildered and feel ripped off.

    This also hurts owners of the nicer cars because the beaters everyone’s buying drag down the perception of the car’s value. I learned all of this the hard way with a Volvo 850R. But it presents an opportunity for a savvy shopper.

    • 0 avatar
      Preludacris

      My first Prelude was one that came up when I searched for “Honda” under $2000, lol. All I knew was the test drive was fun.

      My second Prelude was the most expensive 3rd gen listed locally at the time. It wasn’t THAT much more, but it was worth every extra cent.

  • avatar
    Halftruth

    What’s worse are people who waste your time when you look at a vehicle.
    You get their and it is leaking, hard to start etc etc. I looked at a bike a few years back and went thru all of the typical questions on the phone first – does it idle right, start easy or hard, have inspection etc. I also stated to not start it and leave it overnight cold when I got there. “No problem. All inspected and runs like a top.” I get there and it is warmed up, barely idling and no inspection. “So.. ” I said, “Looks like you wanted to waste my time today.” No comment.. I left.

    • 0 avatar
      NoGoYo

      I just drove over two hours today to look at a Jeep Cherokee, because it was just that cheap.

      Get there, look at the truck, the floors up front are rotten. What did the guy say when I called? “Oh, the body’s good, this is a solid truck!”

      Didn’t even bother trying to find the guy selling it, I just left.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        Don’t lie about G-D rust! I have walked away from so_many_cars where they’ve lied about it.

        “Does it have any rust, at all?”
        “No, none!”

        *Bravada has rust at top of tailgate area where water obviously collected.*

  • avatar
    jeoff

    Happened to me twice–the first was actually on the sale of a motorcycle that I had gotten on a trade for a 240Z. The guy had given me some cash and a company check. Went to his bank and asked if there were funds in the account–“nope”–never contacting the buyer–just repeated this every few days until someone deposited money in the account, and then cashed then check. The very same day, the guy calls me up telling me that I was a crook and the bike was junk. I just laughed.

    The other time was on the sale of my wife’s ancient civic. The guy calls me up saying it didn’t pass inspection. He called several times threatening me, threatening to kill himself–blah, blah. (We never had any problem with inspections), anyway, he must of figured it out, because he stopped calling, and we saw him driving the car around town the next couple of years after that.

    The first guy was just a stupid crook and a jerk. The second guy just didn’t know anything about cars or business, and was a little nuts.

  • avatar
    cpthaddock

    These folks are everywhere. They buy some item, use if for a while, wear or damage it and then want to return it like you’re Costco.

    Christ – even Costco has limits on this BS now, with restrictions on their TV return policy.

    It’s especially problematic when selling unique items especially related to services.

    I know dry cleaners who have had people return items and complain that they are crumpled and dirty A MONTH LATER. Um, yes, you wore that suit to the wedding and threw up all over it, then fell asleep in a flower bed. Seriously. WTF?

    • 0 avatar
      kmoney

      I don’t understand the mind of the kind of person who would do the Costco TV scam (for anyone who doesn’t know what it is, costco has lifetime returns on anything you buy there, people used to return obsolete electronics for full price just when they got outdated and were sick of them). Always nice to stick it to a retailer who is genuinely trying to give you ultimate peace of mind on the things you buy there.

      • 0 avatar
        golden2husky

        I thought it was three years…I worked with a guy who did just that – every 2 years he brought his flat screen TV back, saying he was dissatisfied with it, and promptly bought another one, of course bigger for the same money. Did it three times. Then they changed the policy.

  • avatar
    SaulTigh

    I truly believe that putting a vehicle up for sale privately is almost the worst experience a human being can sign up for. Right up there with going to the dentist and having my teeth drilled. Letting the great unwashed come to my f$%@ing house and waste my time…*shudder*.

    I’m currently deeply unhappy that my former daily driver has found it’s way back to me due to an untimely death in the family. The 18 months it was away from me were the hardest of it’s life. Took me an entire day and $20 to clean it up to where it’s salable. If I can get enough to pay for the cremation, I’ll be happy.

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      “I truly believe that putting a vehicle up for sale privately is almost the worst experience a human being can sign up for.”

      Amen. To me, it seems people who trade in and lose several thousand dollars compared with what they might get from a private sale are just making a rational judgment about how much their time and irritation are worth.

      And that’s true for both cheap and expensive vehicles. The pathologies you see are different, but the net terribleness of the experience is the same.

      • 0 avatar
        RideHeight

        Agree. You don’t work hard to achieve a nice home and then invite fans of Duck Dynasty over. It’s well worth getting “taken” for a few grand every 4-8 years to help preserve your neighborhood.

        • 0 avatar
          sprkplg

          No need to meet at the house. That’s what grocery store parking lots are for.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            This. They never need to come to my house, unless they’ve paid and want to pick up the car.

            I made an exception for a guy who was in a hurry, and driving down to KY from MI to buy a 911, which he didn’t buy and decided to buy my GS430 instead. He was legit, had a truck and trailer, and paid in cash.

          • 0 avatar
            b534202

            Oh yeah, these people never show up on time though. So plan that meeting with your grocery shopping, because it’ll be awhile.

    • 0 avatar
      bunkie

      Add me to the list who couldn’t agree more.

      I’m happy to trade in whatever car I’m replacing. The cost savings simply aren’t worth the crap one has to deal with.

      • 0 avatar
        sgeffe

        I put the word out in circles of family, friends and associates, along with a multi-page document detailing all major attributes (and faults) of the car, including lots of pix! (And the damn car is CLEAN in and out before taking said pix.)

        It’s worked once, and crapped the bed big-time this last time (when my broker and I really got lowballed after I got no hits on my 2006 Accord).

        In no circumstance (unless I was ** REALLY ** desperate) would I attempt an anonymous private/Craigslist sale!

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      I guess it depends on where you live. I have never had any sort of issue selling a car privately. But there do tend to be fewer lowlifes in Maine than elsewhere. I seriously think the sun cooks peoples brains, because it sure seems like the hotter the climate the crazier people are.

      • 0 avatar
        brenschluss

        “…there do tend to be fewer lowlifes in Maine than elsewhere.”

        You must live on the coast.

      • 0 avatar
        Balto

        I’m in Vermont, and I’ve dealt with a crook or two on craigslist. I was selling a piece of crap ’86 cadillac for $500, I needed it gone that day. A guy shows up who had called, pulls the “oh whoops, forgot some of the cash at home” bs, but me being 18 and naive and desperately needing the car gone, I took the $275 that he had (after haggling me down to $400), wrote me an IOU, and disappeared. 6 months later after calling the guy weekly I get a $50 money order in the mail, then never heard from the guy again. Long story short, asshats exist in every state, but I would agree that there are less up in the colder regions.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          Which model of ’86 Cadillac? My thought is unless this was a Brougham you were lucky to get the $325 which may have been scrap value depending on which year this took place. I actually had a Cadillac stolen from me to be scrapped by someone with a tow (because the 4100 motor was blown at the time and was awaiting a swap).

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            What do those old 5.9(?) Broughams drive like? Are they just awful?

            I’m thinking here like the one James drove on the Top Gear American Holiday (which was a 1990+ I believe, as it had the single sealed beam headlamps).

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            The 5.0 Olds 307s drove like cruise ships for the most part. Not so awful you couldn’t pass with them but I think they were something like 140hp and 250ft-tq to move 4500lb so not very fast off the stop light (rode smooth though). I don’t think I ever had the opportunity to drive a TBI Brougham, just the 5.0.

            I’d love to know how 5.0 owners feel now that gasoline has been watered down as the Olds 307 was carb’d.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Here’s per wiki:

            For 1991, the LV2 V8 was replaced by a Chevrolet FI V8 that produced 170 hp (127 kW; 172 PS), while the Chevrolet 350 produced 185 hp (138 kW; 188 PS).

            So they were all carb until the 91? I don’t know the 350/307 type numbers. They get lost on me.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Chevy 305 and 350 should have been TBI. The Olds 307 was carb’d. 307 ran through MY89.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Thx

    • 0 avatar
      Syke

      Doing a yard sale (I’ve done one in my lifetime, never again) CAN be worse.

      Just the same what you go thru is why, when I decided to dump a car, I first look up the values on the major sources (NADA, Kelly Blue Book), figure out what I’d like to get for the car, and then head immediately to CarMax for my first opinion. If they beat my expected, game over, they get the car, I get the check, everybody happy.

      This has worked just fine for me the last two times. The one previous to it was a Craigslist sale – with the expected pain.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        Skye- agreed. Yard sales suck. I was setting up for one once. It was 7 AM with an advertised 0900 start time. A guy showed up at 0710. My black lab, usually friendly, growled and chased the guy to the property line. The guy was pissed. He said he wanted to be an early bird and to control my dog. I told him ,”If my dog doesn’t like you, neither do I, get lost”.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        LOL

        My mom does a big yard sale every year, runs an ad in the paper, and gets repeat customers. If she says start at 800, they’ll show up at 710 and ask for discounts.

        Solution: Set it all up in the garage the night before, and it all stays on tables in there until you’re ready to sell. Then just carry out the pre-prepped tables to the driveway.

      • 0 avatar

        The best thing i ever read in a Craigslist ad was a yard-sale seller who put “early birds will be charged double”

        I’ve done them a couple times when my HOA has a community sale. I only sell stuff I would otherwise throw/give away, and if it doesn’t sell it’s halfway to the car to take to Goodwill. I once had someone haggle me down from a quarter to a dime on a calculator, and then pay with a $5.

        I do regularly sell at hamfests (swap meets for ham radio and computer people). Most customers are ok, but you get some people who will study a $5 item for 20 minutes and then walk away. And the guy who asked me if I had tested a brand-new, still-sealed item. When I told him no, because it was brand new, he put it down and walked away.

      • 0 avatar
        sgeffe

        Might have to try that next time — no CarMax in Toledo, OH area last time I sold a car.

    • 0 avatar
      rpn453

      I’ve posted quite a few Kijiji ads for vehicles my father has sold, but I’ve only personally sold one vehicle, and it was a good experience. I priced it – a ’98 Pathfinder Chilkoot 5-speed – a little high with a very detailed ad because it was in excellent condition and was a vehicle I loved. I didn’t get any calls the first couple weeks so I dropped it a grand and got one e-mail offer for a trade that I politely declined before dropping another grand a couple weeks later. Then a guy and his cute girlfriend came by for a look. Turns out he was a friend of a good buddy of mine, just like the guy I bought it from originally (different buddy though; it’s not that small of a city!). The guy had obviously had the same experience I had when I was looking for that vehicle, with most of the stuff being junk before coming across this gem. He had already paid for an inspection on a previous vehicle – a newer Frontier priced $1000 cheaper – that was in worse condition and turned out to have a bunch of issues. So we went for a drive. “We”, because I’m not letting a stranger drive a vehicle I still own without me in the passenger seat. He respected that. He was impressed with the drive so when we returned he offered $1000 less and I let him have it for $500 under. He didn’t bother getting an inspection after talking to me and seeing my maintenance records.

      I actually saw the guy at a hockey rink a couple years later and we had a conversation. He was still enjoying the vehicle. He told me he had had a mechanic buddy do the timing belt a year after he bought it, just like I recommended.

      I imagine things get a lot worse when your target market is people who actually want to buy cheap, abused junk or use Craigslist instead of vastly superior modern alternatives like Kijiji.

  • avatar
    anomaly149

    This isn’t Jalopnik, why is there commenter bait on TTAC?

    Can we replace this with another one of those insightful transmission or design articles?

    • 0 avatar
      RideHeight

      Write one up. I bet they’ll run it.

    • 0 avatar
      Land Ark

      I bet this is one of Jack’s alts and he just comes here to troll on Doug.

      Otherwise you should probably lawyer-up and sue since they are forcing you to click on these links.

    • 0 avatar
      psarhjinian

      “This isn’t Jalopnik, why is there commenter bait on TTAC?”

      Comment-bait is what Doug does. Frankly, it’s what Jack does, but Jack is more artisanal. I’d argue it’s what Mark does, what Derek did, and (on bad days) what Bertel did. If you run a blog, you pretty much have to bait your commentariat.

      Robert Farago didn’t do it, at least not intentionally. Except for the “Corvette Must Die” story.

  • avatar
    skloon

    Or be my sister in law who bought my truck and complained that the clutch went out 14 months later- stated it must have been ‘my driving’ not the fact that they used it as a farm and tow vehicle

  • avatar
    Rday

    I sold a van to some pakistanis and when we met they said i had quoted a lower price. I hate dealing with these kind of people since this is the way they always operate.Cost me $200. Their english was perfect or I would never have agreed to meet them.

    • 0 avatar
      Mjolnir427

      A: Why does their nationality matter? B: If you had agreed on a price $200 higher, why is it their fault you took less?

      That deal sounds like it’s on you. If you didn’t like the terms they offered when they decided to renegotiate you should have just laughed and driven away.

      • 0 avatar
        TheyBeRollin

        They were from a third world country. In and around Redmond there’s a large area where something like 50-60% of the population is composed exclusively of H1B visa workers. They will try to haggle for stuff everywhere. Pretty much any/all shops and restaurants seem to be fair game, often with seemingly well-scripted and sometimes elaborate methods they use to try to talk them down. Drives the cashiers, managers, and other Americans nuts.

        • 0 avatar
          Preludacris

          This is how most of the world works. In a “global village” setting – maybe it’s time for Americans to brush up on haggling skills.

          Just presenting an alternate viewpoint.

        • 0 avatar

          My clients come from everywhere. It isn’t a third world thing…. It is more the subcontinent, and only fresh off the boat folks. You just need to decline the opportunity to bid against yourself and be clear about it.

          I sold an A2 GTi with Recaro package a while back. Two real buyers emerged. One was a local musician who didn’t know a lot about cars but liked the look. (It was pretty). The other was a guy who showed up in a nicely modded Corrado. He knew exactly what he was looking at, the foibles of the 16v engine, and we discussed his replacement of the G Lader in the Corrado.

          Corrado guy got the car. Never called after the sale. Musician was crying when I told him car was sold. I felt bad, but wanted to move on….

        • 0 avatar
          redmondjp

          Yup. I live in Redmond and have had now three different neighbors from Pakistan, and it’s how they roll.

          Example: neighbor gets vehicle detailed for $79.99, as posted on sign in business. After work is done, neighbor tries to negotiate down to lower price (starts at $30, willing to go up to $50). He is completely shocked that business owner is really ticked about him trying to get price lower.

          It’s a cultural thing.

          • 0 avatar
            sgeffe

            My understanding is that the opposite is true as well — if you are buying something from them in the local market, it is an insult if you don’t bargain-down from their posted price of a given item.

    • 0 avatar
      Japanese Buick

      The most annoying variation on this is people who who try to haggle before even seeing the car. On the first call about it they ask what’s the lowest you’ll take. You know they’ll haggle further once they get there.

      In the days before caller ID was widespread some of them were ignorant that their caller ID names (like “D&J AUTOMOTIVE”) were giving them away.

      Next most annoying is the guys who are calling on a dozen ads and ask you “which car is it you’re selling again?”

  • avatar
    SunnyvaleCA

    The same sort of thing goes with selling houses, but here the scummy buyers use “contingencies.” They sign an agreement to purchase, which takes the house off the market. During the month-long escrow period they come up with some lame excuse where they demand back $$$ from the seller for something. The seller could refuse the $$$ extortion but then they are back at square one of selling the house and are out the taxes, upkeep, and opportunity cost for that wasted month. This scam can be quite effective if the seller is buying a different house and can’t afford to own both simultaneously. I suppose that’s why “as is, no contingencies, for cash” sales are popular with sellers.

    I had a friend in the above situation. The buyer decided—after entering escrow—that he was going to need $25k to remodel the house to his liking and so requested that amount back or else maybe the mortgage contingency might just happen to fall through. (Yes, really.) Fortunately, prices were rising at the time so my friend was happy enough to let the deal fall through. Just before the end of the contingency period, as “comparables” were coming in $10k higher, the buyer wised up and took the deal. My friend was almost hoping to be able to re-list the house, as he wasn’t in a hurry.

    • 0 avatar
      SaulTigh

      I’ve always been a renter, and live in a genuinely decent, working class neighborhood of duplexes at the moment. Great neighbors, kids playing in the street. Pretty idyllic really, so I’m not looking to move, but if I do I was thinking about buying a house for the first time. I didn’t know the above was possible, and frankly it freaks me out just a little.

      • 0 avatar
        ihatetrees

        Having an attorney you trust is necessary for real estate transactions.
        +1 for renting, especially if you can negotiate short term leases. It opens the mind to moving for better opportunities.

        • 0 avatar
          87 Morgan

          Why do you need an attorney to buy a house? I have bought 8 in my lifetime, one with no realtors and sold one without any. Pretty simple deal. seems like attaching lawyers to the deal just drives the cost and brain damage up.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            @ 87 Moran, well it does depend on your state and individual situation. Writing a Purchase and Sale Agreement is writing a contract and the individual laws of a given state dictate whey constitutes a legal contract.

            In my state as a licensed Real Estate Broker I am granted a limited right to practice law. In regards to the PSA that limit is to filling out the blanks on the MLS’s contracts that were written by RE Attorneys. You certainly can buy a house without any legal representation but if you don’t know what you don’t know you may end up making a costly mistake though you are certainly legally allowed to represent yourself in a transaction.

            As a seller you do open yourself up to more potential to be sued by the buyer. It is not uncommon for buyers to sue sellers and the listing agent with their Errors and Omissions Insurance brings the representation albeit in a limited way to defend you in case of the buyer suing you. You are also opening yourself up for a contract that is not enforceable or is able to be nullified should you make a mistake. That means you may find yourself with a deal that won’t close setting back your plans to move and potentially costing you money for the escrow services ect. Selling w/o the knowledge of the market also means you may not price it correctly and leave some money on the table even after you payed the commission of the agents involved in the transaction.

          • 0 avatar

            In New York, a closing is a 500 page file. In Montana, maybe 20 pages.

            In NJ, the buyers’ attorney is also the escrow for the title company.

            You’d be suicidal to try to do a deal in NY or NJ without an attorney. In other states, it can be done…

          • 0 avatar
            sgeffe

            For the largest typical financial transaction of one’s life, it can’t hurt to have someone who can speak “legalese” on your side at the closing table! Cheap insurance (even cheaper than the home warranty and inspection).

      • 0 avatar
        Scoutdude

        Unfortunately things like that do happen sometimes. I have a colleague who has had a buyer that pulled that on his seller a couple of days before closing. Despite his recommendation to call their bluff and call off the deal they decided to make the concession. Note in my state as a buyer you have a number of no cost easy outs while the seller has far fewer ways to nix the deal once the Purchase and Sale Agreement has been signed.

        Of course the exact laws do vary from state to state. In my state you certainly can sue for specific performance and force the sale to go through as the bulk of the contingencies should have been removed before the sale gets too far along. However if the buyer is getting financed they certainly can nix that but are probably shooting themselves in the foot to do so. The day before signing most lenders will re-verify employment and pull a credit report. So just quit your job (or get your boss/HR to tell them you quit/were fired), buy a new car or other big purchase right before the sale and many times the lender will cancel the loan. Pretty drastic measures to get out of buying a home. Things like that do happen but not because the person is trying to back out but because they lack a good Realtor and/or Loan Officer that didn’t properly educate them on the home buying process.

    • 0 avatar
      Japanese Buick

      The cure to that is have the sales contract say that you can continue to market the house and accept backup offers until the contingency is removed. If you receive an acceptable backup offer (usually defined as for at least the same amount of money and with no more contingencies than this one), you notify the buyer and give them 24 hours to waive their contingency or the deal is off.

      This is pretty common around here. There’s even a category for a listing that is under contingent contract but accepting backups in the local real estate listings.

  • avatar
    Big Al From 'Murica

    This is one of the higher forms of douchbaggery for sure. When I was stationed in Italy I picked up a 92 318i wagon…the last of the E30 cars. A few weeks later the seller called and said he had priced the car wrong and needed 300 more bucks. The title was already transferred so I just politely told him I was sorry and hung up. He called back a few times but needless to say He didn’t get 300 bucks.

  • avatar
    George B

    I blame buyers who don’t know enough DIY car repair to interpret the cost in time and money to repair problems that the seller discloses. Some buyers just can’t afford to buy a cheap car because they lack the cash, tools, and skills to keep the cheap car running. I prefer to sell cars to car guys who know what they’re signing up for.

  • avatar
    brn

    Stating that “as is” sales have no guarantees, is not entirely accurate.

    If the seller knowingly misrepresents the vehicle, the deal can be undone. If the ad says “runs great”, you’re out of luck as long as it runs at all. If the seller tells you it has six cylinders, but it only has four, the deal can be undone. If they tell you that the AC only needs a recharge, but they’ve removed the compressor, the deal can be undone. Etc.

    If it gets bad enough, fraud charges could even be considered.

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      Of course there are cases of outright fraud but unfortunately it is upon the buyer to prove it. Sure the seller may have concealed the facts but if it isn’t in writing it becomes a he said she said and taking the person to court is going to be cheap.

      Here is one scam that actually made it to a local TV channel’s consumer advocate. Take one totaled vehicle bought at the insurance auction and repair/rebuild it. The problem is that the title will be branded as rebuilt or salvage and the value of the vehicle will be less than the same vehicle with a branded title.

      So at least in my state you can go to the title office and apply for a lost title. You get a notarized affidavit of lost title which can be used to sell the vehicle and for the new owner to transfer the title. The problem is that while they look up the VIN and ensure that the ID of the person matches the registered owner they only put the basic make, model, license plate number and VIN on the title, they do not note any brands on the title.

      So the new owner takes that and transfers the title in their name no problem. However in “6-8 weeks” when the new title comes in the mail it has the rebuilt brand on it.

      • 0 avatar
        golden2husky

        Would the brand, along with engine size, trim, etc. be accounted for in the VIN itself?

        • 0 avatar
          Scoutdude

          Yes the VIN will tell you the make, model and engine size but the form is the form with those spaces to fill out. I doubt that the person working behind the counter or who ever designed the basic form decades ago knew that the VIN contained that information. Heck if the basic form was designed long enough ago then it wouldn’t tell you much about the car at all.

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    In reality a societal issue based on people with attitudes like the troll who tried to blame part of the population and the fact that people are now more mobile and move very often.

    The first with the ‘caveat emptor’ attitude basically says ‘screw everyone else, I have the right to lie and cheat everyone else with no consequences’. If all sellers were honest then buyers would have no reason to doubt and/or blame them.

    For the second for most of human history people rarely moved more than 40 miles from where they were born and during the course of their lifetime might meet only a couple of thousand other people. So most of the people that you dealt with, knew not only you but your family and you would have to continue to live near them and deal with them in the future. So if you cheated them once, you would suffer for the remainder of your life. Therefore it was to your benefit to be honest. Hence the mistrust of ‘travelling salesmen’.

    Finally all contracts have an implied obligation/duty to deal in good faith. Therefore lies and misrepresentations can nullify the contract.

    • 0 avatar
      akatsuki

      Yes, thank you.

      That POS that broke down, that you pushed into your yard and then got running again with duct tape. Then sold telling the gullible buyer that “she’s been solid since day one”… Guess what. Sellers are jerks too.

      And all the right wing BS above is hilarious, since the only people to blame for declining education in this country are those who benefited from it and then decided they didn’t want to pay it forward.

  • avatar
    CGHill

    At least one of these doofi will show up on the Cars & Transportation section of Yahoo! Answers every day of the year, and often as not the complaint will end with “What are my rights?”

    One chap more irritable than I am — I am told this is possible — has begun pasting the following truism: “If it breaks in two on the way home, you own both halves.”

    • 0 avatar
      Russycle

      Heh. I have a friend who owns a kitchen/home store. His favorite story about an irate customer ends with him saying “I’m sorry, but glass breaks.”

  • avatar
    Scoutdude

    The reality is that this often works the opposite way when dealing with shady dealers.

    My friend’s brother and sister in law had this happen to them at a new car dealer in their town.

    They went in on a weekend with their old truck to trade in on a late model used car. They made the deal with a loan supplied by the dealer. Come Mon they get a call from the dealer saying that they were not able to obtain the financing that they had signed the papers for. They were going to have to come in, bring some more cash as a down payment, and that the interest rate and of course the payment would be higher. Stupidly they agreed went in and signed some more papers. They though the deal was done. Oh no they dealership called back again with the same story. This time however when they got there they told them they didn’t have the extra $$$, couldn’t afford that payment and they wanted their old truck back. After fighting with the dealer for some time they finally agreed to give them their truck back. However when they got in it they found that since the weekend their truck went from being “high miles” which of course they got nicked on the trade in value for to having “low miles” because it somehow lost several thousand miles in that time.

    It is common enough that there is a term for this known as Yo-Yo financing. http://www.negativeequityauto.com/yo-yo-financing-trap.php Fact is that many financing companies will pay a spread premium for getting the customer to sign a contract at a higher interest rate than they actually qualify for.

    • 0 avatar
      krhodes1

      Anyone who goes into a dealership without their own financing arranged gets what they deserve. Make the wankers work for your business. If BMW wants what little interest I am willing to pay, they are going to have to beat my credit unions low, low rates.

      • 0 avatar
        golden2husky

        No, a lot of folks are intimidated when it comes to buying a car. Of course you should at the very least not leave in a new car unless everything is final. But that does not give an opportunist $*umbag dealer the right to take advantage of people. Make a bad deal in negotiating the price? That’s on you the buyer. It is not unethical for a dealer to try to get as close to sticker as possible. But it is morally bankrupt to willfully misrepresent terms to de-horse an uneducated buyer. A few quarts of DOT 3 Liquid Justice should be liberally applied to the dealer’s stock.

    • 0 avatar

      That what happens with a spot delivery and is very common is secondary/subprime car sales. You spot-deliver the car predicated on a certain payment/rate/term only to bring them back in days later for a ‘bump,’ either because the original deal couldn’t get bought or because you knew since the beginning, but just wanted to bump anyway – after all, once you showed your new car to your family, friends, coworkers, aren’t you too embarrassed to simply give it back?

      The GM I worked for when I started the biz loved spotting people; I hated it.

      • 0 avatar
        sgeffe

        Does this happen with financing through the dealer’s manufacturer’s captive-financing arm, e.g. Honda Financial Services? Or would HFS or Honda Motor crack down on a dealer who tried to pull that $hit using HFS paper?

        If I don’t have a broker working out the entire vehicle purchase transaction, I usually take several minutes to examine every piece of paper placed in front of me, while generally giving the F&I puke as hard a time as I can.

    • 0 avatar

      A variant on that is the “wrong payment book”. My mom bought a car, signed papers and left. Payment book arrives in the mail, higher than the deal. Dealer (a new car shop, Toyota in NYC) says “don’t worry, make a payment, and we’ll fix it”. Calls son, freshly minted attorney.

      Son contacts lending company. Car dealer calls, suddenly very apologetic. Correct payment book arrives.

      If a payment had been made to the incorrect deal, this would have “attorned” the agreement, as in by action, you agree, and can’t then go back to change things. If this ever happens to you, DO NOT pay, complain to the lender, the corporate HQ, the BBB, and anyone else you can find. DO NOT make a payment.

      Car dealers are a tough target. They are used to being sued, negotiate fully in bad faith, and the insurance agreements they have usually cover defense, even if there is a deductable. I won a case against a SAAB dealer, years ago, but the work and nonsense was crazy, even for a guy who worked in NYC Civil Court. Expect to go to Judgement to get any money.

      • 0 avatar
        bunkie

        I think I know which Toyota dealer you are referring to. A bunch of years back we stopped in to look at a Camry. The salesman had his Benz CLS parked right out front and quoted us a $650/month lease payment. It took everything I had not to laugh in his face.

        Frankly, I wouldn’t buy any mass-market car from any dealer within a 75 mile radius of NYC. They all seem to lead with some sort of scam to get you to pay way more than what a car is really worth. It gets tiresome.

  • avatar
    Wtdoor

    This doesn’t only happen with cars; last year I sold a used DSLR in great shape to someone who in retrospect wasn’t able to appreciate the equipment I was selling him. He missed the first scheduled meeting time. He asked ridiculous questions (“where’s the lens?” for an ad which clearly stated camera body only) and was mystified by the array of buttons on the back. He paid $550 and got a great camera.

    Two weeks later, I got a series of emails (to a burner email address I used for the transaction) telling me I had scammed him by selling a broken camera and he was going to sue me to get his money back. I sent him pictures I had taken days before selling it and didn’t contact him again.

    I was somewhat saddened by the whole thing; I had grown attached to that 5dc and was hoping to sell it to someone who treated it the same way I did.

  • avatar

    That’s not to mention the fact that genuine problems do crop up that the seller had no possible idea were present, were just happenstance and weren’t there when you bought the vehicle, or were outright design flaws that the seller had no control over or knowledge of. Sorry, it’s not the seller’s fault that your XC90 T6 chewed up its transmission within 1,000 miles of you buying it from him.

    • 0 avatar
      JohnTaurus_3.0_AX4N

      ^This.

      Lying about current problems is one thing, but trying to make someone pay for a repair that was needed after the car was sold is quite another.

  • avatar
    ihatetrees

    I don’t have much experienced selling cars. But I’ve bought several 4-6 year old basic daily drivers for myself and family. I ALWAYS arrange for an indy mechanic to inspect possible purchases.

    If the vehicle doesn’t check out or is a poor value to repair, 25%+ of sellers get visibly angry. It’s almost like they’re being insulted. Do sellers assume they’ve closed the deal because I’m taking the car to get it checked out and am willing to pay to so? WTF?

  • avatar

    I sold a $500 ’86 Voyager I took in trade to someone under the pretense that it may not even make it home – he literally asked “Will this make it back across the Skyway?” and I told him, “I dunno…maybe not.” He then drove it for a 30-minute test drive, then demanded a CARFAX…for a Voyager that looked like a Mad Max prop.

    P.S. It was $500 out the door, meaning really I netted about $300 after tax and registration/titlework.

    Guy calls six months later and says the van’s oil pump went out and he wants not only a refund, but $200 cash for his ’embarrassment’ (???). I told him he should junk it for $400, to which he responded “what about the other $100?” I replied that if he junks it, he walks away with being out $100 for half a year’s worth of transportation and that it was cheaper than the bus.

    He hung up and wrote me a bad review.

    So, yeah. Nothing surprises me anymore.

  • avatar
    CX1

    I chalk this phenomenon up to three things:

    1. Conservative Talk radio. People drive around in their cars all day listening to whiners all day and adopt that same tone about everything. “Things were better when people knew right from wrong and I wasn’t driving around in a car that hasn’t had an oil change since we had a president born in this country.”

    2. The fight against marriage equality. People spend their time and energy trying to keep certain civil rights for themselves. Then they try to return a used car because “we didn’t realize the floor mats were covering up holes large enough for our schnauzer to fall through”.

    3. Conservatism in general. Grown folks go around thinking that if they are not satisfied with the outcome of an election they can just complain about it until someone makes it right. “We didn’t want this healthcare law” quickly becomes “we don’t want to pay for your sister’s lobotomy – take back this Prelude!”.

    Just connecting the dots for you.

    Yep, already know haters out there are gonna lambaste the heck out of my opinion here….if it even gets past moderation. The Truth hurts, even when it is The Truth About Cars.

    • 0 avatar
      JohnTaurus_3.0_AX4N

      Troll fail.

      At least his ramblings had some decent points, and it stirred people like you up. That alone was worth his posting it.

    • 0 avatar
      Chan

      Conservatism is a philosophy of governance.

      The people you describe are irresponsible towards and disrespectful of others, especially those of differing opinions.

      That some of them happen to identify as Conservative does not mean they represent “Conservatism.” They merely give Conservatism a bad name because they are so loud and obnoxious in their dismissal of those they disagree with.

      It’s good critical thinking to avoid attaching looney people (who try to get money after an as-is sale) to a political school of thought–a philosophy that does provide ideas and value to the country.

      Whatever their political affiliation, the jokers just want a few dollars that they don’t deserve.

      Yours truly,
      Not a self-proclaimed Conservative

    • 0 avatar
      360joules

      Well, that sure was a nice rant CX1, but can you hurry up and finish my dry foam Latte? If I want an opinion from the hired BA help, I’ll ask.

    • 0 avatar
      seth1065

      Got It, note to self, only sell to Liberals , Can I ask if your one of those crazy Cons ervatives or will I just know when they open their mouth. ???? should I accept Bitcoins also ????

  • avatar
    Reino

    Generally, sellers wouldn’t have this problem if they were honest and disclosed all the known faults of what they’re selling. If you know a fault and you hide it from the buyer, then at the very least you deserve the headache of the rate buyer who harasses you over it.

    • 0 avatar
      JohnTaurus_3.0_AX4N

      The article is clearly refering to issues that come up after the sale, not hidden issues the seller lied about.

      I think perhaps some reading comprehension classes are in order. Between this and the above comment about TTL, I strongly recomend it.

    • 0 avatar
      Chan

      I’ve had good experiences in being an honest and upfront seller.

      But you can’t please everyone. There are those who will try to bite you for selling them a car you really thought ran great and had generally been trouble-free to you.

  • avatar
    JohnTaurus_3.0_AX4N

    Ive had people come back months after buying a sub-$1000 car because something (normal) went bad. Its like they think youre responsibility to them never ends. “But you said it was a good running car!” Yeah? It was! I never said a radiator hose or alternator would NEVER go bad, that you should be able to drive your $800 88 Taurus from now until the end of time with NO issues, ever. I mean, if you wanted a warranty, you shouldve put that $800 down on a new Kia or whatever. But, you didnt. I understand that you dont make much money and a new alternator is expensive (probably, what? $150 or less for that car?), but that’s life, bud. For the price, honestly youre lucky it has been problem-free for this long, and a minor repair isnt the end of the world.

    Ive helped people out far beyond what I shouldve done, but it is bewildering how someone thinks that a 20+ year old car with more miles than the space shuttle and that costs less than a grand should never, ever have issues.

    I once traded a beater 86 Taurus for a non-running V-8 Dakota 4wd. Two months later, chick calls and said her boyfriend got into a police chase with the car, it was impounded and he went to jail…so I still owe her a running car since that one is gone and she’s once again without a ride. I told her not to hold her breath for it. How does one’s brain work for that to seem logical? Yes, I was stupid and loaned the car to my dumbfμ€k boyfriend who lost it, so obviously the guy who sold me the car is responsible. What?

    Everytime Ive taken payments (from someone I know), it ended up badly. Same with checks. I no longer accept either from ANYONE.

    • 0 avatar
      kvndoom

      Yup, I tell people that I work for the CIA.

      Cash.
      In.
      Advance.

      I have never taken payments for anything without pain, or just plain getting screwed. Sold my awesome JBL L7 speakers to a former co-worker because I was moving. For only $600, and in year 2000 that was like the deal of a lifetime. I got 300 bucks before I just never heard from him again. I still hadn’t learned my lesson yet, but that one has always stung the worst.

  • avatar
    RideHeight

    Reading these anecdotes makes me give a respectful bow in the direction of Ruggles & Da Boyz for the one truly estimable service dealerships render us at new car time: filtering out all the lying, lazy, semi-psycho deadbeats from our old car disposal.

    ‘Course then you have to deal with the dealerships’ version of same to negotiate the new one.

  • avatar
    Ooshley

    Is there no requirement on dealers to stand behind what they sell in the US? Here in Australia there’s a 3 month/5,000 km statutory warranty on used cars less than 10 year/160,000 km. Private sales are however caveat emptor.

    • 0 avatar
      derekson

      This varies from state to state in the US. In some states there are such warranty requirements, in others there are not. And as always, private sales are as is, caveat emptor, etc.

  • avatar
    Signal11

    Why is it that people who blame liberals for everything (ironic considering these are the people who also chirp about personal responsibility) come off sounding like they want to be the victims in the story?

    Strange.

  • avatar
    PeterKK

    Heh. I just bought a used car from a guy and discovered some problems with it. My wife wanted to ask for some money back, but I am with you. I agreed to pay a sum of money for the car in it’s current condition. Whatever condition that ends up being.

    I DID get an inspection, but I still don’t have a shop in the area I trus, sigh… And the guy I took it to took my $40 and did the barest minimum of inspection possible. Awesome. :p

    Ah well. I love this new car, still think the price was fair and am working over the few wrinkles myself, so it’ll be fine in the end.

    Just have to keep learning from these things.

    • 0 avatar
      seth1065

      And that is how it should work, you did the right thing, you still took a hit but that was not the sellers fault, Karma will be good to you Peter KK

      • 0 avatar
        PeterKK

        Thanks! :)

        I should note I am not faulting my wife. It’s understandable when something goes wrong that you go through the stages of grief a little. Heck the car I bought before this was AWful. Awful awful. Tried to back out of that deal, but the guy rightly pointed out that it was sold as-is, so we dealt with it as best we could and learned a great deal about cars and life in general. Still learning, though, obviuosly. Which is good. Better than repeating the same mistakes over and over.

  • avatar
    rockets

    I have sold several vehicles on craigslist with complete disclosure: often 40+ lines of description, numerous pictures, good , bad and ugly if applicable, trying to be fully forthcoming. I have had mostly good response from people who know a bit about vehicles, and a few that I was ready to turn away just because of their poor attitudes. I never state OBO, but always gauge their interest and civility and then be ready to help them out if they are reasonable and ready. I also have my son the attorney draw up a simple contract re: “AS IS” and “no warranties” just to cover myself, but I do that in light of being as honest as possible up front before entering any negotiations. It has worked well, but there is always the risk of unhappy people down the road. When I let go of my Boxster, it was best to just trade it in with the deal I got, as I have had better luck with more commonplace cars than “exotic” ones in private sales.

    • 0 avatar
      Reino

      Exactly. I find that by disclosing as much as possible, I get better quality buyers. Somehow the fact that I put so much thought into writing my ad makes people understand what “PRICE FIRM” really means.

    • 0 avatar
      econobiker

      Didn’t matter how much cool details and maintenance history I wrote up for selling a car because one of the lookers showed up and said “Oh, this is a manual transmission? My wife can’t drive a manual transmission.”

      The ad title said something like:
      “For Sale 1996 Belchfire 1000, 4dr, 2.0 SOCH 4 cyl engine with 5spd manual transmission $900”

  • avatar
    skor

    I sold a used dual-core processor on eBay to a guy in Philly for $10 who wanted to drive to my house (in North Jersey, near NYC) to return it. I told him if he showed at my door, I was going to call the cops. I also refused to return his money because the ad clearly stated ‘no returns’. He complained to eBay but it went no where.

    I’ve also noticed that this kind of behavior is common with the very poor AND the very rich. My neighbor, a millionaire, went to the local market and bought a Styrofoam cooler when the power went out after Hurricane Sandy. After using this cooler for 3 day….the cooler cost about 5 bucks…..he took it back to the supermarket for a refund.

  • avatar
    Pinzgauer

    I’ve sold a lot of cars and atv’s over the years. Never had an issue with selling either because I represent accurately and price my wares very fairly.

    That being said I once had a very original 1955 VW Beetle for sale, which had absolutely no rust but was truly an original car in every way. I put it on ebay and got a hook from a buy who only lived 3-4 hours away. I sent him a huge number of pics and was very honest about the flaws. I told him the paint was a good “10 footer” which had blemishes, that one of the seats was ripped etc, and gave pictures of the defects. I offered to show him the car in person many times, but he declined.

    Finally, he decides to buy it sight unseen and sends a guy with a flatbed down to retrieve it. The flat bed drivers sees the car and says “wow, he (the new owner) is really going to be happy with this car.”

    About 6 hours later I get an email from the buyer which says after receiving the car “its not in as good condition as I thought, I thought it was basically going to look new”. I went from being excited for the guy to get a car that I loved to just being really pissed off. I composed myself a bit and then just replied “Glad it got there safely, enjoy the car” and left it at that. Never heard anything back. I didn’t feel bad for him, I was honest and he could have easily taken the drive down to see the car, which I cant fathom why he didnt. It was a great car. Some people are just jerks, not much else to it I think.

  • avatar
    rockets

    Once I sold a white Ford Focus on craigslist. One guy called and asked me which car it was. “Huh?” “The one you looked at on craigslist, you idiot.” I thought, but kept it to myself. He said he looked at several white Ford Focuses, and couldn’t remember which one was mine. I told him if he was too dumb to keep his cars straight, he was too dumb to buy my car.

    • 0 avatar
      Japanese Buick

      That’s pretty common. It was more common before craigslist and text/email, when someone would call and leave messages about 10 cars from the newspaper classifieds,and when you call him back ask you which car was it you were selling again?

  • avatar
    Silent Ricochet

    Yeah. I’ve been in that situation before and it’s the worst.

    I sold my 1999 Cavalier, with a 3spd auto, that horrible 2.2 OHV engine, clear coat coming off, etc etc, to a high school girl for $900. She loved the thing and was happy to have it. Furthermore, I actually felt good because I didn’t want it and I knew it ran great so I didn’t have any remorse from selling someone a POS. We had her sign a piece of paper agreeing that the car was sold as-is and the transaction was final. I shook her dad’s hand and that was that.

    Hour later, mid-day she blows up my phone with texts about how the car “stalled” sitting in traffic. I helped her troubleshoot the car and I concluded she was out in rush hour traffic driving her new car and it simply got a little hot. I’m still not sure how it stalled exactly. Later on that night she texts me again: “The check engine light just came on”. At this point I knew what she was trying to do. She regretted buying the car and wanted her money back. Needless to say I put her in her place and then I blocked her number… She wasn’t even cute, so the whole situation was just annoying.

  • avatar
    Irvingklaws

    I see a lot of potential mileage in this column. Move over “Top Ten…” and “You Might be a Redneck…”

    Looking forward to future articles.

  • avatar
    Tomas De Torquematic

    I sold the wife’s cheerful red hathcback a couple of years ago to a husband who wanted it for his wife and got an abusive message left on my phone from the wife later in the week because the car wouldn’t start. I pondered for a moment because the car was quite a (in fact, completely) reliable little fella and was only sold due to a growing De family. Husband rang back before I could place a call and explained sheepishly that she’d left the lights on by accident and flattened the battery and then apologised on her behalf. I was kind of glad he got in first because there was a little indecision on which way my tone of reply was going had I rang back without knowing. He called me a few months later and just let me know the car was running well so it turned out nice. For a change.

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