I mentioned last week that I listed the Buick on Craigslist for $7,850. I’ve had some inquiries, some emailed low-ball offers, lots of questions, and the ubiquotious is X still available which is followed by absolutely nothing. So far I haven’t been asked to trade for a Sportster, which is something heretofore I have always been offered whenever I’ve sold a car on Craigslist.
The most serious interest came from Ivan. A guy in his mid 20’s or so who specifically has been looking for a Buick Apollo. We met on Thursday, he asked me 1001 questions, I took him for a ride in it, and he asked me if we could schedule an inspection for it at his expense. I agreed, and we set up an appointment at a shop not too far from home on Monday afternoon. While we waited, we discussed the car and how long he has been looking for one. He also mentioned that he’s interested in a white ‘69 Nova that is on Craigslist, but it’s 3 hours away in Indiana. The inspection came out pretty well. The car has flaws, as any 41 year old car is apt to have, but it is a good solid car.
So, it was time to talk turkey. I felt pretty good. I really liked Ivan, he really wanted the car, and the inspection came out pretty well. Then he hit me where it hurt, with a mega low-ball offer of $4,500. That’s over 40% less then my asking price. Now I’m wondering why the hell I’m even here.
I flat out reject it, he pumps me for a counter-offer. I already know we aren’t making a deal today, we’re just too far apart. He insists on a counter offer, I halfheartedly offer to come down $500. Then he tells me that he’s read all my posts about the Buick here on Oppo (no screen-name, just a lurker he says), that he knows all about it, and he offers to pay what I paid for it 8 years ago, $5,800. I flat out reject it again, he comes up to $6,000. Final offer, cash. Again I reject it.
Now here is the thing I don’t understand. He knows all about my car and my situation. He knows I don’t need to sell it. Why start with a low-ball? What could possibly make him think I would take that?
He texted me that night to say his offer of $6,000 was still good for a few days, but he was going to look at that Nova. My response was, “$7k is my bottom. You won’t find an X-body in better shape for less. But if you do, you should buy it.”
When we were negotiating, I never told him $7,000 was where I’d sell, because he started so damn low, that I was done the instant he threw out that number. Now if he had started at a reasonable offer, like the $6,000 he went up to, we could have had a productive conversation. While I’m not about to drop to $6k, I MIGHT have gone a bit lower than that $7k I really want. Why? Well, I really did like the guy. Actually I still like the guy, and I hope he finds a nice X-body.
Although that Nova? I think he’s going to be mighty disappointed when he sees it in person. Chicago Craigslist only has one white ‘69 Novo right now, and it is in Indiana. I has no details, and 1 photo (that has a rust hole!), it simply directs you to Ft. Wayne Craigslist for details. That’s where I found this ad, for an $8,500 Nova that has a tidy interior, a very nicely detailed engine compartment ... and lots of rust.
What did I get out of the whole deal? Well, thinking I was about to sell it made me actually drive the damn thing. I took a few short cruises, and then Saturday a buddy and I took a little trip to see a dirt track race. Also, I really liked the shop that inspected the Buick. It was a good thorough and fair inspection, and he wouldn’t even take any money for doing it. That’s going to pay off for him, as I will be back.