Get the most from selling your bike
Murray’s golden rules for getting the best deal when selling online
Don’t take the number of watchers as indicative of the number of people likely to bid. Most people will just want to see what it sells for, especially if it’s something unusual or they own one themselves. I do this myself all the time.
First rule – put up as many pictures as possible, large size, and make sure they’re good. I’ve seen too many auctions fail to make decent money because of bad pictures.
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Same goes for the description. You want to include as much info as possible. A little personal opinion never hurts, either – it shows you’re an experienced owner who knows the bike well. If there are faults with the bike, mention them. A buyer is quite justified in backing out if the thing is smoking like a laboratory beagle and you didn’t say so. People think a bid is a binding contract when in fact eBay makes specific exceptions for vehicles and property, so if you don’t like the bike when you inspect it, you’re within your rights simply to walk away.
A Buy It Now is an option, but it must be at least 40% above the starting price and once there’s a bid at the starting price, the BIN option evaporates. If you want to be utterly certain of a sale, start the thing at 99p and no reserve. You may sweat when it’s still on £17.99 with a day to go, but trust me, it will find its true value at the end. If you want to set a reserve price, feel free, but set it at the absolute minimum you’ll take for the bike.
Talking of ends, the best time to have an auction time out is Sunday evening, when everyone’s at home and logged in. Working hours are not good, and Bank Holidays are the worst of the lot.
Finally, ignore all the shysters who will try to get you to end the auction early for their ‘cash offer’. without exception, they’re trying to get the bike for less than it’s worth. Let the auction run its course
Also catching Neil’s eye this week
1977 Triumph TR7 Tiger £4060
Seller says T140E engine, all switches on left bar, runs well.
Neil says I’d prefer an original single-carb Tiger and I’m surprised it sold for what it did.
2014 Yamaha R1 £4055
Seller says Light frontal damage, 50th anniversary model, under 500 miles.
Neil says I’d be very wary of something like this. As a track or race bike, it could be OK.
2011 KTM 990 Adv £4100
Seller says 30,000 miles, FSH, slight pannier damage. Selling for a friend.
Neil says The fact that it’s not the actual owner selling it may explain the bargain price.