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Discussion Starter #1
I'm selling a Suzuki M90. What is the proper way to handle a test ride? Should I pin the guys arms behind his back and threaten to burn his house down and rape his dog if he drops it? Cash in hand before I give him the keys or what?
 

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first don't let anyone ride the bike unless it is insured, registered and inspected, because it will be your ass if he hits someone, for handing him the keys when you knew the bike was not legal to ride.

2nd make the buyer show you his drivers license with a motorcycle endorsement. If he only has a permit then its up to you if you want to follow him and let him take it for a ride (required where I live).

3rd, if you have full insurance on the bike and he steals it or crashes it, you have insurance, but it is not unreasonable to require a buyer to show up with the full price in cash, and tell them (if you wreck it you bought it). To be fair, he cannot get insurance on your bike for one day to take it for a test ride, and forcing someone to put up the full price of a bike in cash, that he cannot get insurance for, is pretty cold blooded and heartless.

If you are not sure if another rider is covered by your insurance, call your agent to be sure.

Its a risk - if the bike does not have full comprehensive coverage its a big risk.

When I got my license and wanted to buy a new HD Iron from a dealer, they would not let me take one for a test ride, even with my MSF course endorsement. I thought they were just being dicks, and that is why I have a Yamaha Vstar.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
It's insured, tabs and registration are current.
 

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Tough situation. For me it would partially depend on who shows up to test ride it and their story and vibe. It may cause me to be flexible or take a hard line. With all the mentioned insurance requirements in play, I still may not be comfortable with a particular person going on a test ride. Just the scammed up world we live in today. Conversely, if I were coming to buy someone's bike and they required cash in hand, I may not be comfortable handing over thousands of dollars to a particular individual. The last bike I sold I didn't allow a couple dudes to test ride the bike without cash in hand...both walked. For me it's a very grey area and I wish you Good Luck!
 

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make them leave their shoes. and lock a toilet seat around their ankle to which you hold the key. and get the names and pictures and addresses of their closest family members and their places of employment and/or school. if a buyer doesn't agree to this, they then aren't really a serious buyer.
 

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As a buyer I wouldn't expect anyone to let me test ride their bike unless I fork over the money... however I expect them to sign a collateral agreement that shows that I forked over a particular amount of cash as collateral in order to take the bike for a test ride.
 

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I'm selling a Suzuki M90. What is the proper way to handle a test ride? Should I pin the guys arms behind his back and threaten to burn his house down and rape his dog if he drops it? Cash in hand before I give him the keys or what?
Unless a 'tire kicker' puts the total asking price (in cash) in my hand...HE or SHE doesn't ride my bike...but can be a passenger behind me...and I will do whatever maneuver they wish, if it is legal. I have never not sold a bike this way...and...in fact, I got so many positive comments from serious buyers...in that they know that I didn't let some tire-kicking d*ck, get on the bike that they are also looking at, and that I take care of my ride. I have never not sold a bike within weeks of pricing it out, by this means. You have a right to protect your ride and R.O.I investment. If the 'tire kicker' objects to you not letting him or her 'test ride' your bike...oh well...no loss to you...and that COULD end up being a loss...to...you. You avoided it. :)

My way to sell, anyway...and have done so for 45 years...no problem!
 

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As a buyer I wouldn't expect anyone to let me test ride their bike unless I fork over the money... however I expect them to sign a collateral agreement that shows that I forked over a particular amount of cash as collateral in order to take the bike for a test ride.
Correct...and have done so...I sign a note that they have given me the cash as collateral...and I make them sign a note that they are responsible (by cash) for all and any damages done to the bike in their care and control. Works both ways...but it works. A serious buyer, will respect totally your attempts to protect your investment. That actually gives them confidence in what they might be buying!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
All good advice. I think I'll add some of this language to the ads I have out.
 

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Correct...and have done so...I sign a note that they have given me the cash as collateral...and I make them sign a note that they are responsible (by cash) for all and any damages done to the bike in their care and control. Works both ways...but it works. A serious buyer, will respect totally your attempts to protect your investment. That actually gives them confidence in what they might be buying!
Have only sold one bike in the past and the buyer did not want to test drive the bike. It was a Yamaha Virago 700 and he paid full asking price and drove it away. I have 2 bikes for sale now and if will be using the method mentioned above if buyer wants a test ride.
 

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A guy posted a sad story on Craigslist a few months back. He had a motorcross motorcycle for sale. Buyer asked if the seller could bring it to his house so he could see it. He shows up with the motorcycle on the back of his pickup truck, the buyer is sitting on his front porch. They unload the bike, starts up and all looks good....

Buyer asks if he can ride it around the block to check the transmission and brakes, quiet residential neighborhood in the city... Sure ok...

About 10 minutes later the seller realizes he is not coming back. He walks up on the porch and looks in the window - its an empty house.

Sometimes the purpose of your life is to serve as a warning to others of what not to do. Since it was a motorcross bike it was not insured.

I guess that is the worse case of what can go wrong. Not only did someone steal his motorcycle, he had talked the guy into delivering it so he could steal it.


I have only sold two motorcycles. One when I was moving from florida to NY state and had no way to transport the bike - I sold it to a casual friend very cheap - no big deal.

I sold my enduro bike to a teen age kid who showed up with his father. I let him take it for ride down my street and back (dead end street) - again no big deal and it was only $1000.

I have sold many used cars, and I have never asked anyone to put up cash in advance before taking any of them for a test ride.

Keep in mind that stealing anything of more than $1000 in value is grand theft, and like I said before if the bike is insured you should be covered if another rider has an accident on your bike.

At the same time, one of the most risky times on a motorcycle is when you are riding a different bike for the first time - so letting anyone ride your motorcycle is a very risky thing to do. You can always get more money for your motorcycle by selling it yourself, rather than trading it in on a new bike, but when it comes to motorcycles the risk is higher that something can go wrong selling it yourself.

I guess this is one place, for some people, where trading your bike in might be the better thing to do, short of setting yourself up as a used Motorcycle business and getting full insurance to cover these kinds of things.
 

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What about meeting the potential rider at a (large) parking lot so they can ride around it & run thru the gears?

The couple of bikes I have sold were titled, but NOT registered. So the buyers could not take them for a test ride on the street. One ran & he went up & down my lane. The other did not run. But, he paid full asking price, as long as I delivered. It was close by my job. So for a 20 minutes of loading the bike, I got full price. I was happy. I hate haggling over price. Simply because I price items what I am willing to pay and I am cheap!
 

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I would tell people cash in hand for the full price agreed upon. They can test ride it then after signing a bill of sale. The bill of sale can be torn up if they do not like the bike. The bill of sale covers you in case they crash into someone. That is how I would handle it.
 

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NGM's position sets the buyer up to be scammed - he shows up with thousands in cash, hands it to the seller, goes for a test ride on a motorcycle that sounds like its full of spare pinball machine parts...

comes back and the seller is gone - he just bought himself a POS motorcycle and has no way to get his money back.

This is one of those things where the more you work thru the possible outcomes, there is no solution that protects both the buyer and the seller.

This sounds like the basis for a business - where a buyer and seller can meet, sign any appropriate documents, both parties are covered by insurance, and the business makes a couple hundred dollars if the transaction is completed.

There is one other way to deal with this - the seller rides the bike, the buyer can follow on his own bike or in his car, see that the motorcycle runs ok, and no one has to trust the other person and risk being out thousands of dollars.
 

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NGM's position sets the buyer up to be scammed - he shows up with thousands in cash, hands it to the seller, goes for a test ride on a motorcycle that sounds like its full of spare pinball machine parts...

comes back and the seller is gone - he just bought himself a POS motorcycle and has no way to get his money back.

This is one of those things where the more you work thru the possible outcomes, there is no solution that protects both the buyer and the seller.

This sounds like the basis for a business - where a buyer and seller can meet, sign any appropriate documents, both parties are covered by insurance, and the business makes a couple hundred dollars if the transaction is completed.
Ok I am an honest seller (not saying you are not) so I do not think like that. That is an easy fix if he or she brings a friend, gets the tag number of the other persons car... gets id on the BOS.
 

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What about meeting the potential rider at a (large) parking lot so they can ride around it & run thru the gears?
Problem with this, if the parking lot is open to the public, it is governed by the same laws as public roadways, and you must be titled and insured. Some police stick to this, but most will just inform and remind you about this, if they see you.
 

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Just realized we are trying to address a problem that is 100 years old.

Buyers and sellers of used motor vehicles have been getting scammed and screwed since the first Model T was traded in....

It created an entire sub-species of humans: Used Cars Salesmen. :^O

That is what we are really talking about, becoming amateur used MC salesmen.
 

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Problem with this, if the parking lot is open to the public, it is governed by the same laws as public roadways, and you must be titled and insured. Some police stick to this, but most will just inform and remind you about this, if they see you.
Not totally correct. The po-po cannot ticket you on private property (at least in Virginia) where access is open to the public, except for these infractions impaired driving, reckless driving, negligent driving, vehicular homicide, vehicular assault and hit-and-run traffic collisions.
Now, if you are on your own private property driving drunk, (not open to public). They CANNOT do anything. Yes, it is dumb to drive hammered, but the liberty the US gives its citizens allows us to do stupid things on our property.
 
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