Considering an Offer and Need Opinions - Ferrari Life
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post #1 of 24 Old 03-27-2012, 01:25 PM Thread Starter
 
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Considering an Offer and Need Opinions

OK, so I have found a 2009 f430 Spyder that I like and am thinking about making an offer. It's listed at about $205,000, and has approximately 2500 miles on it. I need to know something about the protocol of negotiating price.

I offered $100K for a 2007 listed at $139,600 a few months ago, and the owner never responded to the offer or communicated with me further. I practice law for a living, and consider every auto purchase to be something that I negotiate multiple rounds. I didn't expect to meet silence, and I'm wondering was the offer offensive enough to make the seller stop communicating with me wholly.

With regards to the 2009 I mentioned above, I can't spend any more than $150,000, and am wondering if I'm going to offend the owner if I offer that. Is $150,00 such an unreasonably low offer that I'm gonna piss someone off? I feel like a dumbass even asking this question, but I feel like I should ask after my last experience.

Can one of the vets on this Forum school me on the etiquette of acceptable versus unacceptable negotiating?
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post #2 of 24 Old 03-27-2012, 01:32 PM
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Just like anything, it varies from owner to owner. If you expected the first owner to play the dollar bill game with you, that was not going to happen because he undoubtedly thought you were a flake.

You can always make an offer and the owner can always refuse, or just ignore the offer and never correspond with you again if he thinks you are a low-baller.

There is nothing different about buying a Ferrari from any other car, house, boat, etc where the price is open to discussion. Too low an offer will likely be ignored.

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post #3 of 24 Old 03-27-2012, 01:36 PM
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I can't comment on the value of a 2009 430 at $205k, but I'm guessing a $150k offer is going to be met with a similar silence at best. 25%+ discount off asking price would be nice, but certainly uncommon in my experience of buying or selling cars. I wish you well though, if you can achieve that kind of reduction you've earned it.

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post #4 of 24 Old 03-27-2012, 02:02 PM
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Depends on owner, but I wouldn't negotiate with either offer in your two cases. I might reply no thanks, but I wouldn't start a negotiation that far apart.
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post #5 of 24 Old 03-27-2012, 02:15 PM
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in my experience, ferraris generally don't have much wiggle room. maybe 10% for most. doesn't mean you can't find the unicorn and things certainly are different today. i doubt someone asking 205k would go any lower than 190k. all speculation of course. one thing i am sure of is if you offer 150k, you will not get a response.



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post #6 of 24 Old 03-27-2012, 02:25 PM
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mdhunter - the name sure does fit

Why waste your time with low offers - the most expensive Ferrari you will ever own is the one you bought below fair market.

My guess is people will move 5% off their price - you are going to drive yourself crazy shooting for the stars.

This whole Ferrari thing is supposed to be a reward - enjoy the experience and when you buy the 430 the owners knowledge is one that is invaluable.

Have fun be within 10% and be prepared to own one of the greatest cars ever built.
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post #7 of 24 Old 03-27-2012, 04:02 PM
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Don't waste your time offering 25% less, that'll get you nowhere, you need to be within 10% or you won't be taken seriously.

As Champagne612 says, the 430 is a great modern Ferrari, so if you're serious don't insult the sellers, research your model well and make an informed offer at Market value and you will own a fantastic toy which should out a smile on your face every time you take her out or clean her down!

Good luck

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post #8 of 24 Old 03-27-2012, 09:42 PM
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Hunter,

If you walk into a restaurant counting a wad of crumpled bills and some change, even a waiter at Denny's isn't going to believe you can afford a steak dinner. The MSRP for a base 2009 Spider was around $290K. You don't specify how your car of interest is optioned, but a depreciation of around 50% in three years is simply unrealistic. No one is going to take you seriously with that kind of approach.

I recommend you perform a market survey to completely understand the model you're interested in. Better yet, understand the point of entry into Ferrari World your budget will allow. Mike Sheehan has written several articles in the last two years on precisely this topic. While not everyone agrees with his opinions of the modern models, he's pretty solid in his understanding of the market.

Another factor I recommend you keep in mind: these are luxury items. The people selling them usually are not doing so because they need the money. They understand the market and the value of their cars.

I agree with the opinions above, you need to be within 5-10% of the market value. If you're going to exceed that, you need to have solid justification - something that can only come from thoroughly knowing the market.

Finally, based solely on my personal experience, you don't get "multiple rounds" of negotiating. One of the best pieces of advice I got during my search was do not let $5-10K stand in the way of the car you want. If you do, you'll either lose the deal or not be taken seriously.

Bottom line: you know your budget - know the market just as well.

Good luck.

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post #9 of 24 Old 03-27-2012, 09:54 PM
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I can only comment on my own experiences.

All the good cars I have found have not been open to any negotiating at all. Personally, as owner of several very good cars, I would be highly irritated by someone trying to get a bargain. My cars are not, and will not be, bargains, since they are much better than the majority of other cars out there. I know what a good car should cost. I have no time for educating people out there and my time is too valuable to enter multiple rounds of negotiating. I will also not sell to just anybody, the car has to go to a worthy custodian. These are not just cars, they are my precious possessions.

Not every owner thinks like I do. But most do.

This is not a tyre kicker's market. Different rules apply.


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post #10 of 24 Old 03-28-2012, 12:37 AM
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Hunter, Private seller may take up to 10% of his asking price, if the price is similar to what a dealer's asking price, as that would represent dealer's margin should the seller want to sell or trade in at a dealer. Anything lower will not likely be met warmly by the seller.

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post #11 of 24 Old 03-28-2012, 06:22 AM
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I think first step is to work out market price of the car you are looking at. Should be pretty easy for almost new cars (like a 2009 spider), but of course can get very difficult for anything classic where condition and history play a much larger role. As noted above, don't expect any sensible seller to accept an offer much below market (if they do you would have to ask yourself why and whether they are hiding something undesireable about the car). Going in too low will just annoy many sellers and ultimately wastes your time too.
 
post #12 of 24 Old 03-30-2012, 04:22 AM
 
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Hunter, can you tell us the serial number of the car in question?


As for low-balling, yes, you probably offended the owner of the 2007 F430, and that's why you never heard back. The key to low-balling is to first establish a dialogue with the seller before you insult him with an offer. So your initial inquiry should be about condition, mileage, service history, completeness and correctness in its current condition compared to how it was ordered new, etc.

Is the car listed through a dealer or a private seller?

The answers to these questions will tell you two things: 1. Is the car perfect, and therefore not worth low-balling? 2. How valuable is it compared to the asking price, and therefore just how low can you go ($20K? $50K?)?

You want to find out about all of the little details: does the car have books and tools, the window sticker, service records, a car cover, all keys and fobs, etc.? If anything is missing, that gives you an opportunity to work your angle.

What are the cars options? Is it loaded? Power Daytona seats, carbon fiber interior trim, black top (or a less popular off-color top), shields, carbon fiber rear segment, standard five-spoke wheels or Challenge wheels, colored calipers or black calipers, etc.? Carbon ceramic brakes became standard on all Ferrari models across the board, so that's not a selling point for an '09 - so if the seller is touting the ceramics as part of the reason for the asking price, use this knowledge to knock it down a peg.

But your most important tool is communication. Talk to the seller, ask him pertinent questions about the car before you make an offer. This opens the line of communication and could unintentionally put you in a position of power through knowledge (maybe he confides that he's selling because of a divorce). If the first e-mail he receives from you is an offer way below what he's asking, it's not unreasonable to expect him to completely disregard you. But a seller will be less likely to simply ignore your low-ball offer if you've already exchanged dialogue; at the very least, he'll come back with a number higher than yours but lower than his initial asking price - at which point, the haggling has begun.

Good luck, and keep us posted - and try to let us know the serial number if you can.

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post #13 of 24 Old 03-30-2012, 04:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mdhunter View Post
OK, so I have found a 2009 f430 Spyder that I like and am thinking about making an offer. It's listed at about $205,000, and has approximately 2500 miles on it. I need to know something about the protocol of negotiating price.

I offered $100K for a 2007 listed at $139,600 a few months ago, and the owner never responded to the offer or communicated with me further. I practice law for a living, and consider every auto purchase to be something that I negotiate multiple rounds. I didn't expect to meet silence, and I'm wondering was the offer offensive enough to make the seller stop communicating with me wholly.

With regards to the 2009 I mentioned above, I can't spend any more than $150,000, and am wondering if I'm going to offend the owner if I offer that. Is $150,00 such an unreasonably low offer that I'm gonna piss someone off? I feel like a dumbass even asking this question, but I feel like I should ask after my last experience.

Can one of the vets on this Forum school me on the etiquette of acceptable versus unacceptable negotiating?
Ridiculous! 29% discount on the 2007 car. 27% discount on the 2009 car.
You need to establish the market value of the cars you are interested in buying. The seller will know, you need to know. By all means try to get a bargain but if these offers were accepted then I would be worried that the seller knew something I didn't about the car.
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post #14 of 24 Old 03-30-2012, 06:20 AM
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For $150,000 I'll sell you TWO Ferraris (one stock 360 6-speed stick and a Norwood upgraded TR) so you'll have a spare when one is in the shop for routine service.
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post #15 of 24 Old 03-30-2012, 09:32 AM Thread Starter
 
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For $150,000 I'll sell you TWO Ferraris (one stock 360 6-speed stick and a Norwood upgraded TR) so you'll have a spare when one is in the shop for routine service.
Man . . . you're a sweetheart. Where should I send the check?
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post #16 of 24 Old 03-30-2012, 09:37 AM Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by 134282 View Post
Hunter, can you tell us the serial number of the car in question?


As for low-balling, yes, you probably offended the owner of the 2007 F430, and that's why you never heard back. The key to low-balling is to first establish a dialogue with the seller before you insult him with an offer. So your initial inquiry should be about condition, mileage, service history, completeness and correctness in its current condition compared to how it was ordered new, etc.

Is the car listed through a dealer or a private seller?

The answers to these questions will tell you two things: 1. Is the car perfect, and therefore not worth low-balling? 2. How valuable is it compared to the asking price, and therefore just how low can you go ($20K? $50K?)?

You want to find out about all of the little details: does the car have books and tools, the window sticker, service records, a car cover, all keys and fobs, etc.? If anything is missing, that gives you an opportunity to work your angle.

What are the cars options? Is it loaded? Power Daytona seats, carbon fiber interior trim, black top (or a less popular off-color top), shields, carbon fiber rear segment, standard five-spoke wheels or Challenge wheels, colored calipers or black calipers, etc.? Carbon ceramic brakes became standard on all Ferrari models across the board, so that's not a selling point for an '09 - so if the seller is touting the ceramics as part of the reason for the asking price, use this knowledge to knock it down a peg.

But your most important tool is communication. Talk to the seller, ask him pertinent questions about the car before you make an offer. This opens the line of communication and could unintentionally put you in a position of power through knowledge (maybe he confides that he's selling because of a divorce). If the first e-mail he receives from you is an offer way below what he's asking, it's not unreasonable to expect him to completely disregard you. But a seller will be less likely to simply ignore your low-ball offer if you've already exchanged dialogue; at the very least, he'll come back with a number higher than yours but lower than his initial asking price - at which point, the haggling has begun.

Good luck, and keep us posted - and try to let us know the serial number if you can.
Thank you for this post. I appreciate the information. Since I am under no pressure to purchase, my plan was to take my time and look for a motivated seller. Like I said, though, I realize that pissing someone off isn't going to help . . . and it sounds like my usual methods of negotiation are going to simply get me ignored.

It just seems to me that, if you go on the web, and if I look at available cars in South Florida (where I live), there's a pretty large inventory available. I've seen many cars listed for several months, and that made me think I could find a seller that was ready to be more flexible.

In any event, I appreciate all the feedback from everyone. Keep it coming, because you guys seem to know a lot and I seem to know very little about this proces.
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post #17 of 24 Old 03-30-2012, 09:48 AM Thread Starter
 
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Ridiculous! 29% discount on the 2007 car. 27% discount on the 2009 car.
You need to establish the market value of the cars you are interested in buying. The seller will know, you need to know. By all means try to get a bargain but if these offers were accepted then I would be worried that the seller knew something I didn't about the car.
OK, so humor my naivete here one last time . . . and then I'll leave you alone (no promises) with the questions. If the cars I'm talking about have been on the market for several months, am I crazy for thinking that I might just find a seller who is tried of waiting for an offer, and who will take my offer to get the deal done. I'm obviously looking for a motivated seller. That has worked in every area of my career (and life, for that matter), but I seem to be hearing on this thread that the principle doesn't work when a Ferrari is as stake.
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post #18 of 24 Old 03-30-2012, 10:47 AM
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am I crazy for thinking that I might just find a seller who is tried of waiting for an offer... I'm obviously looking for a motivated seller.
You need to ask yourself why someone would be selling an ultra-luxury item at a fire-sale price. In 2008, the tanking economy created a few of these "motivated" sellers, but they've long since sold their cars. As has been explained in several ways now, most owners are financially secure, have several other cars, and know their value. So it is highly unlikely they are "motivated" in the way you're hoping. You're your own exhibit A in that respect counselor.

The sellers that are "motivated" will probably be selling cars of dubious history or condition. They tend to be selling cars that have had numerous owners, selling them on lower-tier car lots in Florida, selling cars that have been highly modified, have high mileage, or have concealed problems or accident damage. The cars will be lacking routine maintenance history and/or be up for a major (read expensive) service. Basically, they'll be cars most owners here wouldn't consider. Bottom line, the seller won't be the reason they're lower than market value.

As the saying goes, even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in awhile. Since you're willing to wait, you'll find one of those "motivated" sellers sooner or later. But you'll irritate a lot of non-motivated sellers in the meantime.

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Last edited by Killer58; 03-30-2012 at 01:27 PM.
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post #19 of 24 Old 03-30-2012, 12:14 PM
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You need to ask yourself why someone would be selling an ultra-luxury item at a fire-sale price.
+1.

If your Ferrari has been for sale for 12 months, why would it kill you to wait another 2, 3 or 4?

If a car really, really has to go, it is gone in one day and the likelihood of getting it is zero because the seller will phone someone he knows.


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post #20 of 24 Old 03-30-2012, 02:50 PM
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Thank you for this post. I appreciate the information. Since I am under no pressure to purchase, my plan was to take my time and look for a motivated seller. Like I said, though, I realize that pissing someone off isn't going to help . . . and it sounds like my usual methods of negotiation are going to simply get me ignored.

It just seems to me that, if you go on the web, and if I look at available cars in South Florida (where I live), there's a pretty large inventory available. I've seen many cars listed for several months, and that made me think I could find a seller that was ready to be more flexible.

In any event, I appreciate all the feedback from everyone. Keep it coming, because you guys seem to know a lot and I seem to know very little about this proces.

I have a Ferrari repair business. I have been getting calls, several a month from people in the Ferrari sales business looking for inventory because they are low or out. Even in this market sales on used cars is pretty good and anyone needing to get out fast can get wholesale or a little better before the sun goes down.

Like others have said, a really screaming deal goes poof with one phone call. Those cars are not advertised.
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