Date: 2011-05-06, 1:44PM CDT
Reply to: [email protected] [Errors when replying to ads?]
case xc 80 riding lawn mower runs mows drives cuts like it should condition is good all metal good tires all good this is a 30 inch cut great for smaller yards blades all good oil just changed ready to mow
This mower has been listed before at $275 with no takers and is still available despite my wasting an hour and half going to look at it. I didn't really want it but I felt a need to make Tom happy by giving it a good home so I decided to make a detour on my way to picking up my new chipper. I offered the guy $200 and told him there is another one not far away listed for $140 and the second nicer one in Huntsville for $175 but I was willing to pay for the convenience. He begrudgingly agreed and we loaded it in my trailer then when I pulled out my checkbook to pay him he screamed no way and quickly pulled it back off the trailer as if he thought I was going to steal it. First time I've ever had someone refuse my check but I wasn't going to beg. I can't believe he thought I'd drive that far to cheat him out of a couple hundred bucks. I know there are a lot of shady characters around but I have always operated in good faith with tractor stuff--even paying for items hundreds of miles away without even seeing it--and have never been burned. The guy's an idiot and he'll probably still be sitting on the mower in July or he'll end up having to sell it for $100. Hell, for $200 I can get myself another real tractor!
His reaction does not surprise me at all....nor do I think that he was unreasonable, either. One rule I always follow when I am buying equipment and that is "Show him the CASH". No one argues when they see the Benji's waving before their eyes. They know they have a solid deal that cannot be undone.
I wouldn't be too angry at the guy, I wouldn't take a check from anyone, I don't care if I know 'em or not. Taking a check from a stranger is not very wise in my opinion, and taking one from someone you know has the potential to lead to bad feelings. ATMs are generally not that far away.
My comments were more on the seller's cluelessness than anything else. I understand the need to protect yourself in a financial transaction but there are various ways to accomplish that and still be a smart seller. The seller in this case could have stated in the ad that he would accept cash only in which case I could have decided whether it was worth the hassle to me of getting the cash. If the seller had simply said to me he wasn't comfortable taking a check I would have offered to leave a check with him and arrange to get the mower later. In numerous other similar situations where the seller indicated they would accept cash only I have offered, and they accepted, to send them a check and give them a week to deposit/cash it before picking up the item--to me its a convenience issue as I rarely pay cash for anything and rarely have more than $20 in my pocket. There are a lot of people who can easily spend $100,000 on the impulse purchase of a sports car but would have trouble getting a candy bar from a vending machine that only takes coins or small bills. In my experience the guys who carry the most cash don't speak English and work for $8 an hour.
Tom is right that waving cash in someone's face is the best way to negotiate a cheap price but, for me, it's not worth my time to chisel $20 off of a $200 item if I think it is fairly priced. If I had $200 cash with me I would have offered this seller maximum of $150 and I'm confident he would have taken it so the way I see it he's out at least $50 playing the hard ass. Many times I have had past sellers give me first shot at new items they wanted to sell simply because they know I'm willing to pay a fair price and the deal will be hassle free. I don't want to do a deal where the seller isn't happy and if they have inflated expectations of the value of what they're selling I just pass on the deal. I know that for all the $20 bills I've left on the negotiating table I've made $200 or more on subsequent deals with the same sellers.
I don't have much use for sellers who believe they are doing me a favor since they are the ones who want (need) the money not me. When I want to sell something I go out of my way to make the deal easy for the buyer and usually get a good price as a result. For those of you who don't want to take a check from me, that's ok--we can still be friends even if I don't buy anything from you.
As a followup to my saga of last week, I will be picking up my new Case XC80 which I purchased for $140. This one is actually in nicer condition and I feel a lot more comfortable with the vibes from the seller, i.e. more confident that I won't run into any undisclosed problems when I get it home. So, I'm $60 ahead (not counting gas money) with a better machine! :sidelaugh:
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