I sold my car, but the buyer is upset...

Discussion in 'Fine Living, Home, Design & Auto' started by borderline, Jun 21, 2011.

  1. blahman

    blahman Senior member

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    you're looking for legal advice from a forum about men's clothes...find a lawyer
    There seems to be quite a number of lawyers on this forum actually hahaha.
    If you're interested in being a "gentleman" you should offer to take the car back and return her money. If you're interested in being a used car salesman then all the above advice applies. Honestly, a clunk in the transmission is not right. You should get that fixed before you sell privately. If you don't want to do that then sell it to a dealer--they will know what an "intermittent clunk" could mean and pay you accordingly. You may not have any legal responsibility but that does not mean you are morally correct.
    I don't see anything morally wrong about it. He did all that he could reasonably do already: sought professional opinion from his mechanic and raised the issue with her. And according to his mechanic the car is fine. Bordeline is not an expert automechanic and he did not sell her a lemon base on the information he has on the car. It is also her responsibility to make sure to double check the car is fine before purchasing and she would be morally wrong if she expect him to cover the repair costs due to her own negligence. There are two parties in the trade and both have their own responsibilities. It would also be quite irrational if he had gone and paid $2000 for repairing something that may not really be all that serious anyway to then sell it for only $1000 extra.
     


  2. QBNCGAR

    QBNCGAR Well-Known Member

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    Let the FTC be your guide.

    http://www.ftc.gov/bcp/edu/pubs/cons...tos/aut03.shtm

     


  3. Carlisle Blues

    Carlisle Blues Senior member

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    If you're interested in being a "gentleman" you should offer to take the car back and return her money. If you're interested in being a used car salesman then all the above advice applies. Honestly, a clunk in the transmission is not right. You should get that fixed before you sell privately. If you don't want to do that then sell it to a dealer--they will know what an "intermittent clunk" could mean and pay you accordingly. You may not have any legal responsibility but that does not mean you are morally correct.
    How is the above being a gentleman? The buyer appears not to have conducted her due diligence. Each party performed in a manner where the other was satisfied and the contact of sale was completed. That is the end of the this business relationship. You are suggesting that that seller perform outside the business relationship and just give money out of his pocket. That is tantamount to the OP requesting that you provide financial assistance to the buyer; you both stand in the same shoes at this point.
     


  4. jbw

    jbw Active Member

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    The OP said he is not looking for legal advice but ethical advice. He wants to act like a "gentleman".

    Caveat emptor might be a suitable legal defense, but it is a sucky ethical defense.

    I live in MA, which I think provides protection beyond caveat emptor to the buyer, but even here I would view state and federal law as constituting the lowest common denominator of an ethical code. It is a codification of a minimum standard; it isn't meant as a guide to life.

    If the transmission fluid was changed and there is still a clunk, it almost certainly means a big repair is going to be necessary. The OP minimized this to the buyer and provided a receipt for a transmission fluid change and the verbal assurances of his mechanic as reassurance. The buyer was naive and trusted the OP. The OP feels kind of bad about it, that's why he is posting. The OP has a conscience. He can choose to listen to it or not.

    Tell the buyer you want her to feel good about the car. Tell her it's only money: offer a refund if she wants to return the car. Sell the car to a dealer or, if you want to continue privately, make sure the next person fully understands the potential transmission issue. That is the finest ethical statement you can make in this situation. I can't understand why one would choose to frame this as how little do I need to do. Do the best you can.
     


  5. intent

    intent Senior member

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    There's being a gentleman and then there's being a pushover. You're suggesting the former.
     


  6. jbw

    jbw Active Member

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    There's being a gentleman and then there's being a pushover. You're suggesting the former.

    I'm suggesting that the best thing the OP can do in this situation is to be a pushover. It may cost him a couple of $K but it will not make his penor smaller.
     


  7. Wolfador

    Wolfador Senior member

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    my reply to her last text of taking you to court would have been "the deal is done, contact me again and I will file harassment charges"
     


  8. borderline

    borderline Senior member

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    Well, clearly there are a range of opinions on the topic ranging from "do nothing" to "buy the car back". She has taken it to a mechanic who claims that the tranny needs rebuilding and that it will cost $1700 and she is asking me for $850. Honestly, I had no idea that it was that bad. It's extremely unlikely that she is trying to scam me, but at the same time, transmission places have a very bad reputation for scamming customers, particularly those that come in saying "some other guy is going to pay half".

    My asking price was $11500 and I sold it for $11000. I could have probably just held my ground on price and she might have bought it anyway. My proposal to her is to say that I don't have to give you anything, but out of the goodness of my heart and because I feel bad I'm going to give you $350 which, in addition to the $500 discount, makes $850. Take it or leave it. If you leave it, you can try to take me to court after which I would likely have to pay nothing.

    Like some said, I'm not interested in doing the bare legal minimum because I do feel bad for her, but at the same time I'm not interested in totally bailing out someone who really didn't do anything to independently check the car (whether I said anything or not about any potential problems).

    That said, I think she is kind of delusional. She said she used to work in an auto shop! [​IMG] Here's another quote from her email:

    "I have seen these kinds of court cases, I ran an automotive shop for five years. I can attest to the verdict being in favor most of the time to the buyer, because of the fact that this specific information was never disclosed by the seller during/throughout the sale."
    [​IMG]
     


  9. tj100

    tj100 Senior member

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    Given her attitude, I'd invite her to go the small claims route. The burden is on her (in most states) to prove that you knew about the issue and didn't disclose it. If you showed her the service records including the transmission flush, I would think that would qualify as disclosure. This is why dealers get to charge a higher price for their cars. She went the private party route and got burned - it happens. If I were you, I wouldn't feel the least bit bad about it.
     


  10. Carlisle Blues

    Carlisle Blues Senior member

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    That said, I think she is kind of delusional. She said she used to work in an auto shop! [​IMG] Here's another quote from her email: "I have seen these kinds of court cases, I ran an automotive shop for five years. I can attest to the verdict being in favor most of the time to the buyer, because of the fact that this specific information was never disclosed by the seller during/throughout the sale." [​IMG]
    Like I said, "this woman could be a huckster out to grab you by the nuts until you pay her to go away." She is no kid nor is she a babe in the woods when it comes to cars She holds herself out to be sophisticated in the workings of motor vehicles and the automotive business. I would not be surprised if her boyfriend/father (same person) is the mechanic on this rebuilt transmission... Like the hurricane said to the palm tree, "hold on to your nuts, this is going to be one hell of a blow job."..... Stand your ground with this creep.....
     


  11. LatinStyleLover

    LatinStyleLover Senior member

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    While I have already expressed my opinion and would have no difficulty allowing this to go the route of court, if you are intending to give her anything at all (anything less than what she wants and she is going to court, that is a given) then I would say to her thusly: "While I do not agree that I am in any way obligated to pay a dime, before I will even consider assisting you with this as a courtesy, I want a second opinion. If she says no then you have yet one more reason to do absolutely nothing, not that you need another reason.
     


  12. intent

    intent Senior member

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    While I have already expressed my opinion and would have no difficulty allowing this to go the route of court, if you are intending to give her anything at all (anything less than what she wants and she is going to court, that is a given) then I would say to her thusly: "While I do not agree that I am in any way obligated to pay a dime, before I will even consider assisting you with this as a courtesy, I want a second opinion. If she says no then you have yet one more reason to do absolutely nothing, not that you need another reason.
    No. Why feed her fire? If there's an issue, her argument gains standing in her mind. If there's no issue, you've wasted your time/money. You lose either way.
     


  13. JayJay

    JayJay Senior member

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    How is the above being a gentleman? The buyer appears not to have conducted her due diligence. Each party performed in a manner where the other was satisfied and the contact of sale was completed. That is the end of the this business relationship.

    You are suggesting that that seller perform outside the business relationship and just give money out of his pocket. That is tantamount to the OP requesting that you provide financial assistance to the buyer; you both stand in the same shoes at this point.

    +1. The op is a private seller, not a dealer. He sold it in good faith. The deal is done. He has no further obligation to her.
     


  14. otc

    otc Senior member

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    That said, I think she is kind of delusional. She said she used to work in an auto shop! [​IMG] Here's another quote from her email:

    "I have seen these kinds of court cases, I ran an automotive shop for five years. I can attest to the verdict being in favor most of the time to the buyer, because of the fact that this specific information was never disclosed by the seller during/throughout the sale."
    [​IMG]


    Back the fuck away.

    If she ran an automotive shop for 5 years, she has no excuse for getting burned on a used car transaction. She should have taken it to a mechanic (of which she would know many if she ran a shop for 5 years) and she should have given it a full test drive.

    If she didn't actually run an automotive shop for 5 years, then she is a liar and you should say bye bye.

    She's not going to take you to court...you'll go to small claims and the judge will either be like "so you ran an auto-shop for 5 years and didn't want a mechanic to look at the car when he said there was a clunk?" or "so he has proof that you tried to lie to get money out of him...and you want me to believe that you have been ripped off?"
     


  15. imageWIS

    imageWIS Senior member

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    Back the fuck away.

    If she ran an automotive shop for 5 years, she has no excuse for getting burned on a used car transaction. She should have taken it to a mechanic (of which she would know many if she ran a shop for 5 years) and she should have given it a full test drive.

    If she didn't actually run an automotive shop for 5 years, then she is a liar and you should say bye bye.

    She's not going to take you to court...you'll go to small claims and the judge will either be like "so you ran an auto-shop for 5 years and didn't want a mechanic to look at the car when he said there was a clunk?" or "so he has proof that you tried to lie to get money out of him...and you want me to believe that you have been ripped off?"


    This.

    Keep all the emails, and if she sues you, she won't get anything out of you.
     


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