Last post on Dec 08, 2009 at 6:30 PM
You are in the Classic Cars
What is this discussion about?
Mar 09, 2003 (8:24 am)
When I appraise a car for someone who is not the owner I never ask them their opinion of value.
However, when the owner calls me, I do diplomatically bring up the subject because if they have some pie in the sky idea of value I want to know that so I can anticipate the trouble up ahead and plan for it.
(like getting paid up front for instance). It's not unheard of for an owner to withhold payment if they don't like the appraisal.
Which begs the question---why hire an expert in the first place?
Appraisers don't set the market, nor do owners. Buyers set the market, nobody else.
#492 of 520 It's no different...
Mar 09, 2003 (9:22 am)
In the "regular" car business.
The "books" and "the internet" say the Plymouth Voyager is worth 7500.00 as a trade in.
Trouble is, nobody wants it. It's got 90,000 miles on it and the lots are already packed with them.
We sure as heck don't want it...we make a few calls and get a bid for 4500.00 from someone wh really doesn't want it but owes us a few favors.
Guess what? THAT is what it's worth!
Mar 09, 2003 (1:24 pm)
Well, yes and no. That's what it's worth "wholesale" but that's not Fair Market Value.
I suspect FMV is somewhere in the middle of those two numbers.
For "collectible" cars, the same basic laws of supply and demand apply, but unlike new-ish modern cars, each "collectible" has to be judged much more closely on the condition, since re-conditioning costs for old cars is often higher than modern used cars.
Mar 10, 2003 (7:33 am)
"FMV" is whatever we can get for it. The trouble is, the people who tell us what the "FMV" or "TMV" is don't write checks.
Sometimes these numbers are pretty accurate, other times they can be way off.
On old cars, I've always felt that a person is far better off buying one that's already been "restored" than a project car.
It just costs SO MUCH these days to do anything.
Last year I was given a quote of 3500.00 just to repaint a car that needed no bodywork!
This was just a "normal" body shop that I know does good work. Nothing fancy.
#495 of 520 Why hire an appraiser?
Mar 10, 2003 (7:38 am)
Well, for this Electra, my number is $12K and the seller is at $14K which at one time he said was his absolute rock bottom price.
I agree with your statement that buyers set the market. But, I'm finding that you first have to "convince" the seller as to what their car is really worth - particularly if they think Old Cars Price Guide is the absolute Holy Grail for determining values and scoffs at the notion that it's not.
I know what it's worth and you know it's worth, but the seller does not. So, I essentially have to prove to the seller that I'm not trying to rip him off which is why I hired an appraiser.
Now, some sellers will say, "how bad do you want it?" implying I should bend over (sorry for being too graphic) for the privilege of buying their car. I don't go along with this philosophy. I'll pay the market value, but don't feel I should have to pay any more.
The seller side could say "just walk away" because he won't find anybody else to pay his "above-market" price either. And, normally I'd agree whole-heartedly. But, this is really a nice car. And, as we've seen and have discussed ad nausium, there's always one buyer with more money than sense who's willing to pay anything for a particular car. So, it's kind of a race against the clock. I need to convince the seller I'm right before he finds that one needle in a haystack of a buyer. And, for now, time is on my side as the seller is not yet actively marketing his car.
I also recognize those who would say that if the seller is not willing to come down then "the car is not really for sale". Well, the seller started off at $16K (which he quickly dropped to $15K). Still, at $14K he feels he's already dropped $2K.
By hiring an appraiser, I can show the seller an appraisal report specific to his car which is additional evidence that he can't so easily dismiss - like he has CPI (which the seller says he's never heard of) and other more realistic value guides.
While the seller is under no obligation to sell the car to me for the appraised value, I can at least say in good conscious that my offer price is fair and have an appraisal that supports my opinion. At which point, when I turn and walk away, the seller will know I'm not trying to low-ball him.
Mar 10, 2003 (8:50 am)
I don't think that the buyer convinces the seller that his price is too high, but rather the lack of buyers at his price convinces him. This may take a little time. If he does sell it at 14K, that MAY mean (not necessarily) that YOU were wrong, doesn't it?
The thing to remember is that the FMV is the bulge in the bell curve, where most transactions will land. There will always be a few people who pay too much or get the car for less than it is actually worth. You have to disregard these sales, even though they SEEM to contradict the FMV. If large number of contradictions appears, well then, obviously the FMV needs adjustment as the bulge in the bell curve has obviously moved.
PS: I think $3,500 is cheap for a quality paint job.
Mar 10, 2003 (10:48 am)
Perhaps "educating the seller" is a more appropriate phrase than "convincing the seller".
I'm not trying to make him believe that 2+2=5. By getting an appraisal, I look at it more as providing the seller with an "eye-opening" experience &/or a dose of modern reality.
Some folks are blind not because they lack eyes, but because they just can't see.
Mar 10, 2003 (2:43 pm)
Sometimes an appraisal is good because it helps to re-assure the seller that he isn't selling too cheap.
But even that can backfire. I appraised a certain Ferrari at $115K about 3 years ago. Well, just last month I hear from a friend of the former owner who says "you appraised that car too cheaply...I just saw one sell at $165,000!"
Well, DUH..the market has had three years to favor this particular model, and also the $165K car was superb in all respects, while the $115K Ferrari of 1999 needed some chrome, paintwork, interior work, etc.
So figure a modest appreciation per year + the $20K needed for re-hab and there you are.
But try telling that to the judge.
Mar 11, 2003 (8:50 am)
Of course, the seller will scour the old car publications looking for the source that gives the highest value. THAT becomes what the car is worth!
It sounds like you are 2000.00 apart and that's not much, really.
I don't remember...have you seen and driven the car?
A Cashier's Check for 13,000 waved in front of him might just do the trick.
You can always have some hundreds in your pocket!
#500 of 520 Let's do it again, shall we?
Mar 12, 2003 (9:51 am)
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item- - =2407097649
The most recent auction ended with a high bid of $9,100 which didn't meet the dealer's reserve. This guy must be nuts. I think that's plenty-O-money for this car. So now, this car is back up again. The bidding's been pretty active in the few hours it's been on.
I kind of like the blue over red color combo. It's different than the tons of red/white and white/red ones I generally see.
I almost bought a dark silver '64 DeVille convertible with red interior this past fall. I offered around $11,000. But, the seller wanted more.