After doing much research, I came to the conclusion that no warranty company could and/or would provide adequate and satisfactory cover for the older vehicles in which I deal in, and those that did, had so many "get out" clauses that they were not worth having, and would be misleading to the customer.
As such, I thought it better to be upfront about the situation from the very outset, and state my vehicles are sold without formal warranties. This is actually in line with most other dealers who specialise in classic cars, however many just omit to tell you this.
That said, in line with UK consumer law, I sell all my vehicles in full compliance with the Sale of Goods Act 1979, and the Unfair Contracts Act of 1977 (and any amendments thereof), and as such I prefer to sort any major issues that may arise on an individual basis, choosing to work with the customer directly. This has worked very well for me in the past, and as such I have many happy (and repeat) customers, both here in the UK, in Ireland and in continental Europe.
Reserving Vehicles & Deposits *NEW*
Please note that with much regret, from 20/05/2019 I will no longer be using the "Reserved" or "Deposit Taken" notifications. A vehicle will now only appear as "Sold" when it has been paid for in full, and has been collected by the buyer. I really didn't want to implement this somewhat draconian "cold commercial" policy, having previously relied on trust, but after several successive cancellations within a two week period, where no deposits had been taken, yet with costs had been incurred on my part, having some of those vehicles MOT'd and serviced in readiness for their new owners, I felt I needed to revise my policy.
In order for me to hold a vehicle, I will now have to insist on a deposit, however that vehicle will not marked as such, as experience has taught me that marking a vehicle as "Reserved "or "Sold" which then has to be re-advertised, due to a buyer changing their mind, also discourages future prospective buyers; the often misguided assumption made being if the original buyer has backed out of the sale, then there must be something wrong with the vehicle. Only other inquirers contacting me directly will be informed that a deposit has been taken on a particular vehicle. Also where expenditure has been made to prepare that vehicle for the buyer, that deposit may become non-refundable. Obviously I will exercise some discretion here, and there will be some flexibility too, especially as many of my customers travel large distances to view my cars, and may need to book trains/flights/accommodation in advance. In this case, as always, I would never sell a vehicle from under a buyer who had made such travel plans.
I don't offer finance packages, believing that it detracts away from the car itself. It seems in some cases, retailing cars has actually become just another way to sell finance packages, and has become more lucrative for some than selling the car itself - it's a bizarre situation and is more like "the tail wagging the dog" Also some of the packages on offer are based on extortionate rates of interest, which given the current economic climate are wholly unethical.
Expectations & Reality
Just a quick note here about expectations, and reality. I know I've mentioned this already on another page in my site, but just to re-iterate that even with the best will in the world, and although I try to get these cars as good as I can, a car of ten, fifteen, twenty, thirty years plus, however good it is, is never going to be perfect, it's simply impossible, and what you're actually doing is buying a vehicle at a "certain point in time", which will have naturally suffered some deterioration and wear. Obviously, some vehicles fare much better than others, and these are the vehicles that I try my uppermost to source. However, and I can't stress this enough, that those expecting total perfection from a car that's been in existence for quite some years, should ask themselves whether they are making the right choice.
My advice is if you are embarking on a purchase of a Classic car for the very first time, do your research first, as it may not be for you. I'm not in anyway trying to discourage anyone, but merely to point out the realities, and to stress that running a classic vehicle is a very different experience than living with your average sanitised modern car. Personally, I think its much more much more enjoyable and rewarding, however equally, I accept, it may not be for everyone. As the old saying goes, one man's meat, is another man's poison.
In some cases, I can offer a delivery service, where I'll either take a vehicle to a customer myself, or arrange to have it delivered by a trusted third party. However, please note, once a delivery is embarked upon, these charges, for obvious reasons, are not refundable. In the ten years I've been doing this, 99.9% of customers who have bought vehicles from me based on description/photographs, have been very happy, with the majority being very pleasantly surprised. I believe, and I'm told time and time again, that my standards are very high, however my advice to any potential buyer would be, if you are in any way unsure, or have any doubts, however small, about the vehicle you are interested in, then I strongly suggest you come to my premises to view it in the flesh first. In an ideal world, I would much prefer all customers do this, before agreeing a sale, but equally, I also concede that sometimes this isn't always possible, and will always do my best to help.
At the end of the day, It's definitely not my intention to mislead anyone, and I'm this business more for the love of these fantastic old cars, rather than money itself. However, like most other people I too have a mortgage to pay and a family to support, and only want to earn an honest living. As such, I simply want to set out the way I work from the outset. I want customers to be happy with their purchases, and to keep coming back.
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