Buying private or dealer?

Discussion in 'Motorhome Chat' started by Yotanka, Aug 28, 2014.

  1. Yotanka

    Yotanka Read Only Funster

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    We are starting looking for a used motorhome. Any tips on where best to buy from? Where to look? Dealer or private better. Ebay etc. it's minefield out there and we don't want to make a mistake. Any tips most welcome please
     
  2. Glyn and Debbie

    Glyn and Debbie Funster

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    Hi just thought i would reply what are you looking for in your motorhome, how big? fixed bed? how much? I asked these questions because I am thinking of selling my 2009 Autotrail cheyenne 840d with lots of extras.
     
  3. chaser

    chaser Funster

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    Go and look at every mh you can at all the dealers, see what they charging then go and buy one private at about three quarters the price
     
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  4. Abacist

    Abacist Funster

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    Buying secondhand its a case of Buyer Beware as you are unlikely to get any warranty unless there is anything left from the manufacturer or previous warranty in which case why are they selling so soon. It could be legit or otherwise. Check any warranty left is transferable. If you are new to motorhoming then it would be wise to try and take someone experienced with you or if its the one that you want pay an engineer to give it the once over both habitation wise and vehicle wise and do a damp, HPI check, MOT etc.
     
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  5. tambo

    tambo Read Only Funster

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    And buying from a dealer is as much a gamble to be honest ....often their warranty isn't worth the paper it's written on ....I'd always advise buying privately , treat the van as having no guarantees and go over everything with a fine tooth comb , twice!

    Any genuine private seller won't object to you checking everything
     
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  6. Yotanka

    Yotanka Read Only Funster

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    Hi thank you for a reply. A 2009 year would be out of our price range I am afraid. Lovely though it would be. Now if I win the lottery, that would be another matter ;)
     
  7. TerryL

    TerryL Funster

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    Not wishing to "hijack" the thread, and also without casting aspersions on anyone in particular, it emphasises a situation I'm currently in which also begs the question, private or dealer.

    A friend has just died who bought a new motorhome and only managed one trip in it before being hospitalised. Having been looking after it whilst in storage the executors have asked me to get a valuation.
    The first call was to the dealer who sold it, who came back with a buy-back offer approx 65% of a similar van currently on the market. Although, like probably most others on the forum, my initial reaction was "that's ridiculous" I stopped to think. The dealer has to make a profit, let's say 20%. Then he has to charge VAT at another 20%. In that case his offer doesn't seem all that unreasonable.

    From my knowledge accrued over the several years I have owned a motorhome I know I could expect to get around 85% of a dealer-offered item, but of course the executors are looking for a quick disposal and are definitely not interested in the work and time involved in a "private" sale (and frankly neither am I, good friend so he was - there's nothing in it for me).

    But here comes a complication - the habitation check I arranged to keep the Warranty current revealed damp. Not serious and easily rectified (a leaking seal round the water filler) of course any sensible private buyer will simply walk away. Before you ask, I did provide all the evidence to the dealer so his offer would reflect that.

    So what do I tell the executor (a firm of solicitors)? In my humble opinion the van could be an excellent bargain, even with the damp which almost certainly would be sorted under warranty, and so I'm asking around locally (I've got a couple of "leads") before I get back to the executor.

    But it does beg the question - private or dealer?

    I don't want to give out any specifics here and I'm going to try a few of those traders who offer to buy vans. I don't suppose I'll fare much better there though. It's a shame because it's the beneficiaries who are going to lose out.

    Terry
     
  8. tambo

    tambo Read Only Funster

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    I'd sell it to a private buyer at 65% before I'd sell it to a dealer ......but that's just me
     
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  9. Johns_Cross_Motorhomes

    Johns_Cross_Motorhomes Trader - Motorhome & Accessory Sales

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    You are very welcome to come and pay us a visit, Andy or Paul will give you sensible advice

    Peter
     
  10. Yotanka

    Yotanka Read Only Funster

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    Thanks Peter we may do this
     
  11. Bellini

    Bellini Funster

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    I think it depends what you're after.

    As we all know, layout, layout, layout.

    In my own experience, finding that narrow band of suitable models (or indeed just the one model) that fits your needs and budget means you sometimes have little choice whether to be selective about buying from a dealer or private.

    In my case, I simply didn't mind. The advert wording tells me a lot about the seller. Calls / emails add colour and from that I can make a gut-feeling call as to whether I'll be likely to buy subject to a full inspection and whether it's worth my time to do so.

    I'd rather buy from an honest, reasonable dealer than a shonky private individual. And I'd rather buy from an honest private individual than from a shonky dealer.

    If a dealer's 'inflated' price reflects a better standard of presentation, a warranty, good aftersales, maybe a service and / or valet, then it could be worth it. Each case has to be evaluated on its own merits. Private sellers can be just as ruthless as a dishonest dealer.

    I bought Udo from a dealer. As above, I didn't have a choice as my model is pretty unique in layout for that manufacturer. But the many emails I had prior to agreeing the sale gave me the confidence to proceed and I knew the price was fair. Conversely, there were some lovely old private-sale Hymers around in the UK, but none matched what I saw in Udo.
     
  12. Abacist

    Abacist Funster

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    Let's get the VAT position right! A dealer will be operating the 2nd hand margin scheme so the VAT he pays when he sells a 2nd hand van will be 20% of the profit margin between his buying and selling price not 20% of the whole selling price as with a new van. He can reduce the margin by any costs like doing the damp repair.

    Probably easier with some figures. Let's say the market price of a similar van is £100k then the dealer has offered £65k so his profit including any VAT is £35k. The VAT included is £5,833.33 ignoring any repair costs for the damp. Therefore the dealers profit will be £29,166.67 on a sale price of £100k or nearly 30%.

    dealers would like all deals to be as good as this and they clearly are not!

    Out of the gross profit the dealer has to pay staff wages costs, rent, light, heat, advertising, bank loan and interest charges etc before he makes his net profit.

    If I were the solicitors I would get 3 dealers to quote and pick the highest or put the van into an auction and then they have got a market price if they want a quick sale or avoid the hassle of a private sale.
     
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  13. gibbon

    gibbon Read Only Funster

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    Private.
     
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