100 Percent Not Getting It For 100 Dollars

, , , , | Right | November 20, 2020

I’m a young woman who has recently purchased a used car that is magnitudes better than my old one, an inherited junker that sat undriven on a driveway for a solid five years before it came to me. I put the old car up for sale through a third-party site.

One day, I get a phone call from an unknown number.

Me: “Hello?”

Caller #1: “You want to sell your car?”

Me: “Um, yes? I have a car to sell.”

Caller #1: “I’m [Caller #1]. Does it run?”

Me: “Yes, it runs. Like I put on the site, it’s got some issues—”

Caller #1: “What do you want for it?”

Me: “Something in the $200 range.”

Caller #1: “Can I see pictures?”

Me: “Yes, I can send you some.”

Caller #1: “Good. Send me pictures and we’ll see what we can do.”

The call ends. I send pictures. A few minutes pass, and I get a call from another unknown number.

Caller #2: “Hi, I’m [Caller #2]. You talked to [Caller #1]. When can I see the car?”

Me: “Um… what are your hours?”

Caller #2: “Can I see it today? It’s raining, so I need you to come to me.”

Me: “And where is that?”

Caller #2: I am at [Location thirty or forty minutes away].”

Me: “Sorry, no. That’s a long round-trip for a weeknight. Other people I’ve talked to have offered to tow it, so I think I’ll go with one of them.”

Caller #2: “Fine, I’ll come to you. What’s your address?”

Me: “I’d rather meet at [Nearby Coffee Shop].”

Caller #2: *Getting irritated* “You won’t meet me here, and you won’t meet me at your place? What’s the deal?”

Me: “I don’t know you, sir.”

Caller #2: “Oh. All right, I’ll meet you there.”

Me: “And is this an appraisal, or to buy it?”

Caller #2: “Oh, to buy it, for sure. I’ve got cash in hand.”

Me: “Okay.”

In a very strange turn of events, my roommate’s boyfriend shows up, hears I’m selling the car, and offers me $350 for it, instead, so he can take it to his shop and fix it up. I feel pretty guilty about accepting when the other man is already on his way, so I tell him I at least have to talk to the man and give him a shot at matching it before I take his offer. 

I meet up with the buyer in the parking lot, and he starts eyeing the car.

Caller #2: “Hmmm… It’s in pretty bad condition.”

He shuffles around, shaking his head at almost everything he sees.

Caller #2: “You know, the seats have to be in perfect condition to have any resale value. And this engine isn’t really in demand. It’s gonna be tough to get my money back for this. I can maybe do $100.”

Me: *Lighting up* “Oh, I’m sorry to hear that. If it’s gonna be that hard for you, I should probably sell it to someone else.”

Caller #2: *Clearly taken aback* “What? No, no. We said $200; I can do $200.”

Me: “Well, I’d hate for it to be so hard for you. And I’ve gotten an offer for $350. You probably can’t match that, right?”

Caller #2: “This is insane! I drove all this way!”

Me: “I know, sorry. But I think this other offer is a better fit.”

He calls his boss, the first man I spoke to, and puts him on speakerphone.

Caller #1: “Do you have any idea how many resources we wasted driving down there for you to break our deal?”

Me: “I know it’s a long way; that’s why I said I didn’t want to do it. You offered. And I wasn’t aware we had a deal.”

Caller #1: “Yeah, we did, for $200!”

Me: “That wasn’t really communicated to me. I am sorry for your lost time, but I did come to meet him and he tried to offer me $100.”

Caller #1: *Pissed off* “I am an excellent communicator! Excellent! This is what I do, all day, every day. Do you know how many deals I work on in a day? And for you to tell me—”

Me: “Sir, I don’t know what you hope to accomplish by ranting at me. I’m not going to sell you my car.”

The buyer looked mildly embarrassed and took his phone back with his boss still raging on speakerphone. I headed home to get a cool, drama-free $350.

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