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(Topic ID: 270667)

When selling how do you guys typically handle things?


By too-many-pins

4 months ago



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  • 33 posts
  • 27 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 4 months ago by freeplay3
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    #1 4 months ago

    I have been buying and selling machines for about 12 years and the "process" tends to drive me totally crazy. I like trying to be "fair" with everyone so normally if I have several people wanting one machine I get back to those people in the order emails come into me. I figure that is the "fairest way".

    My issue is this and this isn't the first time it has happened to me. Yesterday I listed a Torpedo Alley and within 3 hours I had seven guys emailing saying they wanted it. Two of the guys are what I consider "pinball friends" and two others have been past customers. To be "fair" I used my normal approach giving people a shot at the machine in the order emails came in. Now I have been waiting almost a day to hear back from the guy first in line for the machine?

    How long do you wait before moving on to the next guy - do you do first guy in the driveway with cash gets it - or how do you other sellers handle things?

    I marked the machine "sale pending" and am still getting offers on it, a couple of the people waiting (guys in the first seven) have contacted me more than once to see where things stand, etc. Selling is starting to drive me even more crazy than normal!

    My goal is to get my garage emptied out so I can paint it over the Summer and I just want these machines and other stuff out of my way at this point. I could just move the stuff to the basement but if I do that I'll end up just moving it back to the garage in the Fall to sell it. So I would prefer getting the stuff sold and gone sooner if possible.

    So bottom line is I am just curious what "good sellers do". Thankfully I am about done with the whole process but I am still curious how some guys make it look so easy and yet I always seem to have a hard time getting stuff gone quickly.

    #2 4 months ago

    I have had sellers pass over me because I didn't get back to them within an hour.
    Or couldn't pick up that day/night.
    Ya know what they say,"first with cash gets the machine" Harsh reality but I understand.
    -Mike

    #3 4 months ago

    I just hope sellers dont open the message at the top of the list.. because thats the newset one.. not the first one to come in.. you actually have to dig down to find that first guy. Just try to be fair.. its all you can do! sounds like you are

    #4 4 months ago

    Send him another email saying you need an answer by a certain time. If he still doesn’t respond, move on.

    #5 4 months ago

    I'm just here waiting for the BAD SELLER ALERT! TOO-MANY-PINS thread.

    #6 4 months ago
    Quoted from schudel5:

    I'm just here waiting for the BAD SELLER ALERT! TOO-MANY-PINS thread.

    Honestly at this point I really don't care. People can look at me feedback and see I try my best to bend over backwards for everyone I do business with. I have been buying and selling for over 50 years and have never been involved with anything like pinball people. Two weeks ago I listed my camper and 3 cargo trailers for sale and within 8 hours had all four sold. All painless & easy transactions. Yet every time I try to work with pinball people things seem to drag out forever.

    It really shouldn't be all that complicated - either you have the money and want something or you don't. But why email a seller saying "I want it" then when seller replies not reply back. You had time to email me originally take two minutes and reply when I get back to you.

    I am trying to schedule other stuff around selling pinball machines and parts. I don't want to sit here waiting for days for someone to get back to me.

    #7 4 months ago

    In your ad say something like ‘machine will be picked up by xxx day or time.

    In your initial contact, confirm when the buyer will be inspecting and picking up the game. Make it clear the first person to come get it gets preference.

    Don’t structure your activities around waiting for tire kickers. Half will never bother showing up to scheduled appointments.

    #8 4 months ago
    Quoted from YeOldPinPlayer:

    In your ad say something like ‘machine will be picked up by xxx day or time.
    In your initial contact, confirm when the buyer will be inspecting and picking up the game. Make it clear the first person to come get it gets preference.
    Don’t structure your activities around waiting for tire kickers. Half will never bother showing up to scheduled appointments.

    I just like to "finalize" stuff as quickly as possible so I can move on to what is next. It just blows my mind that people don't at least have the courtesy to let me know if they want a machine or not once I reply to their email. What is the "proper time to wait" before just moving on to the next guy. One of my "pinball friends" wants the machine and will show up to get it. Do I just email the other guy and say "to late" - do I wait another day - how do other sellers handle it?

    Again - just trying to be fair - but at what point am I being "unfair" to myself?

    #9 4 months ago
    Quoted from too-many-pins:

    I just like to "finalize" stuff as quickly as possible so I can move on to what is next. It just blows my mind that people don't at least have the courtesy to let me know if they want a machine or not once I reply to their email. What is the "proper time to wait" before just moving on to the next guy. One of my "pinball friends" wants the machine and will show up to get it. Do I just email the other guy and say "to late" - do I wait another day - how do other sellers handle it?
    Again - just trying to be fair - but at what point am I being "unfair" to myself?

    Give him one last opportunity to respond by XX day/time. Beyond that, you don't have any obligation to wait for him. Move on to the next guy. How long you wait is completely dependent on how quickly you want to make the deal. In the end, it's up to you.

    With that said, I try to give people the benefit of the doubt. But, if you really want something gone, then won't be faulted for making the deal, when the first guy passed up that opportunity.

    #10 4 months ago

    Of course as soon as I give up on the first guy and tell the next guy he can have it the first guy gets back to me. Now I am going to be an "ass" in one of their eyes. Why can't things be simple?

    #11 4 months ago

    if a friend or awsome pinsider (like me) put their hand up, i would offer the game to them first
    onoy you know who messaged first

    #12 4 months ago

    Contact first person say hey there’s a long line. I’ll need to pass you up if you don’t get back to me in X days. Then move to the next person. If it’s a friend call them too.

    #13 4 months ago

    I say "Bring cash. Hundred dollar bills please"

    #14 4 months ago

    After 20 years just tired of the bullshit.

    If someone says "I'll take it!"

    I say "Great, please paypal me $100 nonrefundable deposit" and then I never hear from them again. Probably happens at least 50 percent of the time.

    Repeat until someone actually send the dough, or if someone you REALLY know or trust says they are coming to get it.

    No need to be "fair" if you got 10 emails saying they want it, sell it to the person you know/trust the best who you know will actually come get it. There's no rule you have to accept them in chronological order or whatever.

    #15 4 months ago

    I sort of have the same question (and have also found "pinball people" to be the biggest pain of any group to deal with in terms of selling stuff), so the advice here is definitely appreciated by more of us than just the OP.

    Quoted from CrazyLevi:

    After 20 years just tired of the bullshit.
    If someone says "I'll take it!"
    I say "Great, please paypal me $100 nonrefundable deposit" and then I never hear from them again. Probably happens at least 50 percent of the time.
    Repeat until someone actually send the dough, or if someone you REALLY know or trust says they are coming to get it.
    No need to be "fair" if you got 10 emails saying they want it, sell it to the person you know/trust the best who you know will actually come get it. There's no rule you have to accept them in chronological order or whatever.

    I think this sounds like the most rational approach to make things as fuss-free as possible (and potentially yield a bit of "free" money, to boot); I never would have thought of demanding "earnest money" in this way for a pinball transaction, but it seems like a great idea now that I see it!

    #16 4 months ago

    I go the stupid route. Buy at asking and sell low enough its gone with the first responder to my ad. No time for multiple people coming by to play and haggle. Also if I want the pin I have no problem giving them asking if its as advertised. Makes life simple, that's worth a few hundred either way for me any day.

    #17 4 months ago

    If the first guy messaged right away, and then nothing the rest of the night, you then had way more patience than I do. Your trying to sell a game, and be honorable, which is hard to do. I know some will say that the first person might not be online all the time and that you should give them time, I call bullshit on that. If you message someone that you will take their game, then you should be responsible enough to check your messages.

    After a couple hours, I would have went to the next one. Being someone that sells games daily, I deal with stuff like this often. So many people will say that they will take it, then you dont hear back from them for a few days, or even at all. And if you hold the game not having a closed deal, sometimes the backup buyer loses interest. So you have to either get the person to deal right away, or move on

    #18 4 months ago

    I stopped buying games that are iffy or I know I would tire of fast or someday want to sell. The industry today as a whole has made that much easier. Only recently bought back a few I used to own but missed.

    Makes life much easier.

    #19 4 months ago
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    #20 4 months ago

    Be glad you aren't selling guitars.

    But, yeah - First guy n line gets 24 hours to commit / finalize arrangements. If he doesn't, next guy gets his shot. Repeat until somebody shows up with cash and leaves with the machine.

    #21 4 months ago

    Keep the post coming - not only does input help me hopefully it will help other people down the road. Typically when I list stuff for sale I sell cheap and stuff sells quickly (normally within hours of me posting) so the "selling end" is no issue. My issue is when I am waiting to hear back from someone that doesn't reply quickly.

    I never really worry about the -- "no shows" -- because I normally have several potential buyers for stuff I list for sale. My biggest issue is "waiting for a reply" once I get back to someone who tells me they want what I am selling. I try to give them 24 hours but after that I really want to "move on" without hard feelings. I guess I just need to give those people a rock solid time line to get back to me?

    One more machine and a couple more playfields and my days of selling pinball stuff are about over anyway. Sometime in the future I'll be selling off a few machines from our collection but my "project stash" and parts business are sold so now I am just about done selling pinball stuff anyway. I don't even have enough around to justify setting up at York this Fall if that show happens. I'll miss the buying and selling but I need to move on now that Wayne has lost interest.

    #22 4 months ago

    #23 4 months ago

    First person that puts a cash deposit down gets the pin and I talk with everyone at once. Pin doesn't leave the house payment is complete via a non-reversible transaction like cleared check, cash, PayPal friends and family, wire, etc.

    Some people need to see it, some don't. Last 4 pins I sold were all text/email/phone only. One was a pick up, the other 3 I packaged to the buyer's specs and they arranged shipping. Buyers never needed to see them in person.

    When someone I don't know tells me they want it, I have to have cash to hold it. Once I have a deposit, the deal is done. I don't care if someone offers more money, although I might make a list of back up buyers in case something happens.

    #24 4 months ago

    Good call on the deposit - first to leave it, gets it

    #25 4 months ago

    I also believe in the “fair” treatment too but I wouldn’t wait as long as you. If they want it really bad and I don’t know them then I need a non refundable PayPal deposit to hold. I offer/expect the same thing if I’m buying.

    This needs to happen in hours not days in my opinion; especially if multiple people are interested. If multiple people are interested right away you’re likely under market value so the first responder should want to act fast. You’re not in the customer service game; you’re trying to ethically sell your game and move on.

    Once deposit is given then I’m patient with the buyer to make arrangements because I know it’s sold.

    #26 4 months ago

    I usually only try to deal with one person at a time but I pick them based on the content of their correspondence with me, not necessarily when they contact me. If they flake or lowball me or generally seem like a pain in the ass I move to the next person. I sometimes feel bad but if they are local I am more likely to go with that person as in person deals are much better IMO.

    #27 4 months ago

    On your reply consider requesting a phone number for contact so you can both be on the same page of managed expectations. Some people don’t live on Pinside watching PM’s. A phone number would answer many issues or doubt.

    #28 4 months ago

    I would have done moved on to the next interested person already. If someone wants it bad enough they will be there that day or the next with cash in hand unless they give a deposit and arrange a pick up day within reason. Good luck.

    #29 4 months ago
    Quoted from RTR:

    First person that puts a cash deposit down gets the pin and I talk with everyone at once. Pin doesn't leave the house payment is complete via a non-reversible transaction like cleared check, cash, PayPal friends and family, wire, etc.
    Some people need to see it, some don't. Last 4 pins I sold were all text/email/phone only. One was a pick up, the other 3 I packaged to the buyer's specs and they arranged shipping. Buyers never needed to see them in person.
    When someone I don't know tells me they want it, I have to have cash to hold it. Once I have a deposit, the deal is done. I don't care if someone offers more money, although I might make a list of back up buyers in case something happens.

    Just a heads up for you, and anyone really, that PayPal friends and family is reversible. The buyer can pay you via F&F with their credit card (they would just cover the fee) then do a chargeback through their cc company. Seen it happen a bunch when I bought and sold vintage video games. Just be cautious.

    ETA: this was several years ago, so not sure if this still goes on, but something to look into before shipping a few thousand dollar game out.

    #30 4 months ago

    Pinball collectors are a pretty picky bunch. I haven't sold many machines but have sold several playfields and plastics sets and boards. It seems that lately almost every time I sell something I always get the buyer complaining about something and asking for a discount after the fact despite pictures being sent and describing as best I can the condition of parts that are 20 to 40 years old that are not perfect and probably never were perfect. I have just decided to keep the parts for my own use later because selling them is such a hassle.

    #31 4 months ago

    I've sold 15 Bally early SS games and 5 Gottlieb EM's plus a couple Willliams in the last 3 years, another 35 in the prior 17 years. All went smoothly, knock wood. Some went to local friends, many via Pinside and a few via CL and only one on eBay. The majority were fully working semi or fully restored games. I always give 1st person to contact 1st dibs. But we need to speak on the phone so I get a feel for the buyer. If they sound like a tire kicker or unable to do minor repairs after picking it up and dragging 100's miles home, that's an issue. I've given phone support on a couple sales when they got their game home to resolve minor issues.

    I only gotten a deposit a couple times, I'm old school and expect your commitment to buy is real and serious. I expect "cash on the glass" as mentioned here 1K times. Had a Centaur buyer concerned about carrying over 4K in cash, was a deal breaker till he decided to travel 275 miles with cash. You play it and pay cash, simple.

    On the flip side, I've reached a price with a seller, gave my commitment to buy it, offered a deposit and it was refused. I will generally pick up a game in 2-5 days. Lost several because the seller took another offer just to move it a day sooner. It is what it is.

    #32 4 months ago

    Haul what you are selling to AGS bimonthly sale . Leave the hassle to others.

    Shane

    #33 4 months ago

    This isn't the best answer for pinside market, but here is what I do. You said 4 of the people were friends or past customers. I always call or text people I know before I list a game. I also tell all the people I buy and sell with to contact me when they are looking to buy or sell a game. I sell more games before I list them this way. You tell them you are going to list it, you put the word out, and trust me if they are serious they will stay in contact with you. Plus, because they have dealt with you before, there is trust in place already.

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