advice on selling bikes locally- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    advice on selling bikes locally

    hi all,

    i did a couple of searches, but didnt turn up anything. i wanted to ask a few questons on how best to sell a bike locally via craigslist:

    -i've never bought or sold antyhing on CL before over approx $100---for something in the $2k range, how did you work out the logistics? meet in public place and exchange cash? cashiers check/money order (i've heard that these can be put on "hold" by the buyer after the transaction)? do you meet in a local bank branch and do an EFT?
    -are the mtbr or other paid classifieds a better bet? i'd like to deal locally, so i was avoiding ebay
    -ask around at the LBS if anyone is interested in a used bike (i'd be buying a new one from the lbs, so hopefully not cannibalizing their sales)
    -other things i should be aware of?


    thanks in advance
    94 Specialized Rockhopper

  2. #2
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    I haven't sold anything that expensive either. If I were to do so, I'd insist on cash or EFT, no checks or other forms.
    :wq

  3. #3
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    For craigs: I always meet in a public place, never at my home (call me paranoid). Always take cash, I actually take a counterfeit pen with me and check the cash on the spot. Buyer likely won't care if they are not up to something. Be prepared for a lot of flakers, a lot of low ballers.

    mtbr: I have never sold on here but I have bought plenty. Works great if your ok with not dealing face to face. stuff seems to get sold off with a quickness too.

  4. #4
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    You always gotta love when they count out the money and go....ah 20 short. You take that? It's all I got (on say a 300$ item). You say nope and they MAGICALLY find 20bux in their pocket.

    *******s.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by redmr2_man
    You always gotta love when they count out the money and go....ah 20 short. You take that? It's all I got (on say a 300$ item). You say nope and they MAGICALLY find 20bux in their pocket.

    *******s.

    9 times out of 10 this is something that happens. I usually get the "what the lowest you will go?" my typical response "my asking price."

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by redmr2_man
    You always gotta love when they count out the money and go....ah 20 short. You take that? It's all I got (on say a 300$ item). You say nope and they MAGICALLY find 20bux in their pocket.

    *******s.
    I hate that.
    :wq

  7. #7
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    thanks for the feedback guys---yikes--i think i'll also try asking around friends of friends to see if anyone is looking ror a newer ride
    94 Specialized Rockhopper

  8. #8
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    My suggestion is to never go far to meet people. There are too many asshats who just want to kick the tires. I met a guy in Livermore once to sell him a bike and when I showed him the bike he didn't even sound serious about buying it.

  9. #9
    Takw/agranofsalt
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    I always meet at the nearest Starbucks....they're everywhere and I don't want somebody I don't know coming to my house.

  10. #10
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    I always make sure that the buyer is made very well aware of the bike or product I'm selling, lots of pictures of any scuffs and I let them know of all the regular servicing it's had... This keeps you two on a equal page.

    I always have the price agreed upon before I'll meet the person. I always meet in a grocery store parking lot, Starbucks, or in front of a bank. Somewhere with cameras facing the street to keep both parties honest. At the point of sale if they don't bring the full amount and they try to negotiate down as a result I politely inform them that there are other people interested and that there is a bank/atm nearby. If they keep haggling me I walk away. That's about it.
    The arsonist has oddly shaped feet!

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by redmr2_man
    You always gotta love when they count out the money and go....ah 20 short. You take that? It's all I got (on say a 300$ item). You say nope and they MAGICALLY find 20bux in their pocket.

    *******s.

    Yep, been there. I asked the guy what CD he had in his car to make up for it in trade. I got a couple I didn't have. I think he was kind of irked too.
    Lead by my Lefty............... right down the trail, no brakes.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by markj2k4
    mtbr: I have never sold on here but I have bought plenty. Works great if your ok with not dealing face to face. stuff seems to get sold off with a quickness too.
    I have sold here on mtbr a 6 times or so. The responses are fast. I even had a local guy buy my brakes and then asked what else I had. I ended up selling 3 other things.

    Do be prepared to ship though. For a bike, that's a tough call. You might want to have an LBS pack it for you.
    Lead by my Lefty............... right down the trail, no brakes.

  13. #13
    ballbuster
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    Second what 0gre says

    Quote Originally Posted by dth656
    hi all,

    i did a couple of searches, but didnt turn up anything. i wanted to ask a few questons on how best to sell a bike locally via craigslist:

    -i've never bought or sold antyhing on CL before over approx $100---for something in the $2k range, how did you work out the logistics? meet in public place and exchange cash? cashiers check/money order (i've heard that these can be put on "hold" by the buyer after the transaction)? do you meet in a local bank branch and do an EFT?
    -are the mtbr or other paid classifieds a better bet? i'd like to deal locally, so i was avoiding ebay
    -ask around at the LBS if anyone is interested in a used bike (i'd be buying a new one from the lbs, so hopefully not cannibalizing their sales)
    -other things i should be aware of?


    thanks in advance
    Don't invest too much of your own time trying to accommodate people, unless they are spending lots of time chasing you around... .that is, if they are unusually hot for your item. Yeah, Craigslist is full of flakes, but you don't wanna be a dick about it. You don't wanna treat everybody like they are a bunch of flakes, but you don't want to bend over backwards for no good reason. Good legit craigslist buyers aren't going to make you jump through hoops.

    Keep this rule in mind around craigslist: Money Talks, BS walks.

    Somebody is always going to try to talk you down on the price. That's fine. Build in some cushion in the price to account for that. Everybody want's to think they got a deal on something, and if you advertise something with a 'firm' price, it's usually a turn-off... unless you are obviously selling a high demand item for way under market value to make a quick sale. For your slightly inflated asking price, if they give you your asking price... then bonus. This has happened to me twice on not cheap items.

    Don't 'hold' anything for anybody. I have a rule that whoever gets cash in my hand first gets the item, regardless of circumstances. Also, don't take a deposit for an item to hold it. You'll just end up holding the item for a month while the dufus rounds up the last of the cash... cause 'something' will always comes up. Meanwhile, you don't have all the dough and can't really sell it to somebody who does have all the dough. You're not a bank, and you're not JC Penney with a layaway plan. It makes for a big PITA.

    If dealing IRL, cash (or trade for previously agreed to item) only. No checks, no cashier's checks.

    IMO, craigslist is great, but it is the lowest common denominator of buying and selling stuff (being free and all). If you can deal with and filter out the doofuses and time wasters, it's actually a good way to buy and sell stuff.
    Last edited by pimpbot; 09-13-2010 at 11:22 AM.

  14. #14
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    I have bought and sold a lot of things on CL over the past few years. It's a great tool and it gets things done quickly. If I am selling something, I ask people come to me and I'll pick an open public place like a nearby parking lot or park that I can walk or ride to.

    I had a major issue once with a guy who drove from 2 hours away to buy something. I stressed to him that I absolutely had to meet by a certain time because I had to leave for a night class. He showed up an hour late and called me expecting to still be able to meet. Apparently this angered him greatly since he drove for nothing and he decided to call me 2-3 times a day for the next couple months. I now only give people my Google Voice number so that I can block the loons if this happens again. GV is free and keeping your anonymity is priceless.

  15. #15
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    When selling on Craigslist, I just have people come to my house when I know I'm going to be home anyway. Most people with either be late, or early, or flake. If they want to test ride the bike, they have to leave their driver's license. I usually look at ebay to see what the same model of bike actually sells for. (not asking prices, which are often unrealistic). I ask about $50 or $100 more than I think I'm going to get and it usually results in a quick, painless sell. Sometimes you end up getting your asking price. Sometimes you have to drop the price a little. I require cash only payment.

  16. #16
    OOOOOOOh Gee Are Eee
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    One other bit, watch out for counterfeit cash. A friend got burned for a $100 counterfeit. You might be able to meet them at your bank and deposit it on the spot so it's solid in your account.

  17. #17
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    How do you handle the test rides.. maybe should go together on another bike?

    I would like them to leave full cash before I am not sure if it's too extreme for a $200-$300 bike. I don't know the buyers, and don't want them to run down stairs and such or do stupid things to test it, that might wreck the rims on a bike of that price range.

  18. #18
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    For test rides of a bike over a thousand dollars, I'd ask for license and credit card, or car keys. Be nice about it though, tell them you don't know who they are and have been burned in the past, so can you please do it for peace of mind? Then steal their identity and car! errr wait. don't do that!

    Pimpbot ironically held items for me, and met at his house. But I'm a cool duuuuude.

  19. #19
    ballbuster
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    Well....

    Quote Originally Posted by redmr2_man
    For test rides of a bike over a thousand dollars, I'd ask for license and credit card, or car keys. Be nice about it though, tell them you don't know who they are and have been burned in the past, so can you please do it for peace of mind? Then steal their identity and car! errr wait. don't do that!

    Pimpbot ironically held items for me, and met at his house. But I'm a cool duuuuude.

    ... and I actually met you before. How's that lightweight build working out, BTW?

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by dth656
    hi all,

    i did a couple of searches, but didnt turn up anything. i wanted to ask a few questons on how best to sell a bike locally via craigslist:

    -i've never bought or sold antyhing on CL before over approx $100---for something in the $2k range, how did you work out the logistics? meet in public place and exchange cash? cashiers check/money order (i've heard that these can be put on "hold" by the buyer after the transaction)? do you meet in a local bank branch and do an EFT?
    -are the mtbr or other paid classifieds a better bet? i'd like to deal locally, so i was avoiding ebay
    -ask around at the LBS if anyone is interested in a used bike (i'd be buying a new one from the lbs, so hopefully not cannibalizing their sales)
    -other things i should be aware of?


    thanks in advance
    I've sold lots of small items and one frame that went for $500. All of my items are cash only. I usually meet at my house but I don't let anyone in - I bring the item out front. Also, don't negotiate price until the person has invested the time/effort to come see the item. That insures that the person is actually interested at or around the price you are asking. At that point a little bit of bargaining is fine.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by pimpbot
    ... and I actually met you before. How's that lightweight build working out, BTW?
    pretty good. carbon reba world cup does all the work, all the other components just follow suit. I'm finding that most trails, v's can't take it anymore. Well they can, it's just not fun. Brake bump lockup anyone? Sooner or later, I'll grab a cheapo ht frame with disc tabs to fix this problem. Til then, it's a fun fast bike. 5in fs bike for the majority of the rides, and a road bike to keep the beer gut down. life is good amigo!

    /ot

  22. #22
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    I'm a CL buyer/seller. Cash only. I had a dude pull the "I'm short" thing, only it was $40 short and once he liked the bike he had his buddy hand me over a $20. I think he still had cash on him but I was happy to sell. I like the counterfeit pen idea.
    I've paid in full plus a bit via paypal when I know I can't meet someone for a few days, shipped after full paypal payment as well.
    My house/public place/delivery..it depends on the item. The full bikes I've sold I've had people come to my house, meet out front. There's some stairs and dirt down the street to test on.
    "My opinions are often more offensive than my *******." - Twindaddy

  23. #23
    Crazed Country Rebel
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    Quote Originally Posted by dth656
    hi all,

    i did a couple of searches, but didnt turn up anything. i wanted to ask a few questons on how best to sell a bike locally via craigslist:

    -i've never bought or sold antyhing on CL before over approx $100---for something in the $2k range, how did you work out the logistics? meet in public place and exchange cash? cashiers check/money order (i've heard that these can be put on "hold" by the buyer after the transaction)? do you meet in a local bank branch and do an EFT?
    -are the mtbr or other paid classifieds a better bet? i'd like to deal locally, so i was avoiding ebay
    -ask around at the LBS if anyone is interested in a used bike (i'd be buying a new one from the lbs, so hopefully not cannibalizing their sales)
    -other things i should be aware of?


    thanks in advance
    I'm always surprised to hear peoples thoughts on this. I've never had an issue buying or selling online.

    I like to think it's because of my sunny demeanor and stunning good looks.
    Stupid, but sometimes witty. Occasionally brilliant. Slow and fat though.

    Mike Vandeman Sucks Dong

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by redmr2_man
    You always gotta love when they count out the money and go....ah 20 short. You take that? It's all I got (on say a 300$ item). You say nope and they MAGICALLY find 20bux in their pocket.

    *******s.
    This just happened with a fork I sold. I declined his first lower offer. When he agreed to my original asking he handed me the money which I promptly counted in front of him before handing over the fork. It was his original offer amount. Always Count the Cash. Deal only with cash.
    I've bought and sold bikes, cars and motorcycles on CL. Just know your products and know the going rate and be prepared to sell lower if you really want the item gone. Get phone numbers and talk to the potential buyer. XC stuff typically had quick responses with reliable buyers. Downhill items typically have flakes that don't carry themselves well in email or voice conversations. I answer to those that know the product and don't ask too many questions. Anyone lowballing without even discussing condition of the product will not get the time of day from me. Good luck with the sale.

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