eBay purchase - Pontiac GTO Forum
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-30-2015, 10:04 AM Thread Starter
 
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eBay purchase

I see a lot of people referring to buying a car on eBay. But how do you really know what you are getting. If the car is thousands of miles away, it's not really practical to fly up to personally check things out. Pictures don't always tell the whole truth. For those that have done an eBay purchase, how did you do it from a pre bid basis and how did it turn out. I'm starting to look for a 68 and not much showing up in driving distance yet. At least on Craigslist.
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-30-2015, 10:22 AM
 
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It's almost impossible (due to costs) to examine the car yourself. The next best option is to have a family member or friend (who lives closer to the car) take a look at the car for you. Sometimes you can find a member of a car site (like this one) who would be willing to look at the car for you. You can even have a professional examine the car (but, you're getting into money with this last option).

Your simplest option is to ask lots of questions via eBay mail (so there's a record of what's "said."). Get lots and lots of pictures. If the seller fails to cooperate, it's best to move on.

In the end, you're likely to have some degree of regret over your purchase... Just get over it and get on with the resto, etc.

PS For the most part: Try to stay away from dealers.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-30-2015, 10:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Red1970GTO View Post
It's almost impossible (due to costs) to examine the car yourself. The next best option is to have a family member or friend (who lives closer to the car) take a look at the car for you. Sometimes you can find a member of a car site (like this one) who would be willing to look at the car for you. You can even have a professional examine the car (but, you're getting into money with this last option).

Your simplest option is to ask lots of questions via eBay mail (so there's a record of what's "said."). Get lots and lots of pictures. If the seller fails to cooperate, it's best to move on.

In the end, you're likely to have some degree of regret over your purchase... Just get over it and get on with the resto, etc.

PS For the most part: Try to stay away from dealers.
I bought mine off of Ebay from the owner who had it on consignment with a dealer.
It was close enough to inspect personally and I took a ASC mechanic with me to look the car over.
After making my offer based on what the car needed the owner didn't want to take my offer but changed his mind when I started to walk away with the cash.
So what if a flipper wants to make money, it is the condition of the car and how prepared you are to walk away.
No deal is better than a bad deal and dealers want their commission and are willing to take a smaller one to move the car.
The fact is there are flippers in the game and if it is a nice car and they got to it first sometimes you just have to pay to play.
If you have ever been held hostage by a body and paint shop it is worth the extra money to be able to inspect the work after it is done than deal with the excuses, endless delays and the loss of parts when you finally get fed up and have to flat bed your car out of there and buy the equipment to finish it yourself.
My car cosmetically was a 10, mechanically about a 5 but it was all there and it was worth the price to have the car in my possession to restore it mechanically.
YMMV
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-30-2015, 11:35 AM
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Originally Posted by Goat Roper View Post
... it is the condition of the car and how prepared you are to walk away.
YMMV
Amen and amen. I grew up in a 'car' family. My dad sold them for years, and when I lost him in 1980, he'd had his own used car business for years. One thing he drilled and drilled into me was this:
"As soon as you convince yourself that you simply MUST have a particular car, you've lost. You're going to pay too much for a car that's either priced too high, or is in rough condition, or both. No matter how badly you want one, there's ALWAYS another one better out there somewhere for less money. You just have to be diligent and patient. The only real control you have in a situation like that is the decision to walk away."
I never knew him to be wrong on anything that mattered, and I still miss him.

Bear

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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-31-2015, 12:44 PM
 
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I never bought a car on Ebay but I did buy a ski boat. My Recommendation is that if you don't have any friends or family close by, hire someone. I know for boats you can hire a surveyor to evaluate and go over everything. See if you can get quality photos and a video of it running and driving. Although if you can swing it and think it's the car you want, road trips are always fun! Plus if you buy you can rent a trailer and bring it home saving on the transport cost.

John
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-31-2015, 02:45 PM
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What these gents said. Big Time. Don't be in a hurry, don't be emotional about the car, and get it inspected by a pro. The $$$ spent on a vehicle inspection on a car you don't buy can save you thousands in the long run. Just like a home inspection. Continue to search and be patient. It's out there.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-31-2015, 06:39 PM
 
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My experience was a little different

This is not anything new. But you have to set eyes on the car. I would not even rely on a relative or person I did not know.

My experience was with a 1964 convert non tri power car. I knew it was rare and just had to bite the bullet drive down and look at it. In my case it was only about 1200 miles away. I had the lady take some pictures of a few key spots I knew there to be likely issues and they looked ok. The PHS came back solid and they guy did it for me literally over the phone and mailed it out to me the next week. I had to call him back on Monday and give him the info again. So I left on Friday night and drove to a U haul to buy a hitch and then drove non stop with red bull, and beef jerky in hand. Got there the car checked out and was not mis advertised it was a fair deal. Gave her a deposit and left to get a 1 way uhaul trailer. went back put the car on a trailer and pulled into a rest stop to sleep for 4 hours.

Dealing with the 1964 year they are so rare, that when they pop up you kinda have to take a chance. But my car was in need of total restoration, so a scratch or dent did not bother me.

But for you guys wanting turn key spend the money and buy a ticket go out and look at it or fill your tank up and take a road trip. You will save yourself some time and money in the long run. And don't look at it at night. These things are getting harder and harder to find and for the dough some of us are shelling out, it is worth the trip.

And for high dollar cars do not hesitate to ask for a ton of pictures and videos. If the car is as it is being advert it is no big deal for a seller to take a couple of pictures , It is not like the old days where we had to scan a picture, Everyone has a camera on the phone. And if the guy or gal doesn't... Email me I will drop ship an old flip phone and charger to your seller.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 08-31-2015, 07:46 PM
 
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I purchased a 64 from eBay. Thankfully it all worked out. I got the phs, about 100 photos and asked 1000 questions. Finally ended up talking with the seller many times before I went for it. After searching for about 18 months I knew what I wanted and what to ask. Since I was looking for an original car/engine combo that need restoration, I was less concerned about minor issues. The car was delivered and met what the seller stated. It could have gone all wrong, but I got lucky. Good luck with the search.


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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-01-2015, 03:11 PM
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Years ago, before the internet, I sold a '37 Chrysler Imperial business coupe to a guy sight unseen in Michigan. I sent him a few polaroid shots, and stated the car's condition. When he got the car, he was very happy with it. It was better than he hoped. It depends on who's doing the selling. If I were to buy a car from a forum member here, sight unseen, I'd bet it would be just fine. But out there in the cruel world, it pays to be cautious. Not everybody is as honest as us true Pontiac guys!!
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-05-2015, 11:40 PM
 
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I buy and sell a lot on ebay but cars are a totally different ball game. I have listed my 71 GTO a couple times but haven't gotten any feedback, maybe I am asking too much. I have learned through other sellers that they had non paying bidders and other issues so I think a lot of people don't even bother trying to sell there, so I would say keep looking elsewhere. One good way I have found of searching is do an advanced search through google and you can search all of craigslist. You do this by setting the domain to craigslist.org.
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  Pontiac GTO Forum > The 1964-1974 Pontiac Tempest, Lemans & GTO > 1964-1974 Tempest, Lemans & GTO General Discussion

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