RIVERSIDE AUTOS

To start out as a doorstep trader ?

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Hello everyone,

My name is Joe, I’m 31 and have done various jobs throughout my working life like tiling, barman, car valeting and working in a lab. I’m getting made redundant in September so have a bit of cash. I’m really interested in starting out in this game and would appreciate any advice at all. I think I’m going to try to find a position in sales at a local garage to get some experience etc but am half tempted to learn what I need to online and just start on my own ? I like this forum and see that there’s lots to get through and I will also buy the digital book and have a read of that this evening.

Thanks,

Joe

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It depends on your personal circumstances. I started at 23, 2 years after University and with 2 years experience as an accountant. I had never worked in the trade but had nobody else to worry about at that time, other than myself. That was 13 years ago. The gamble I took then was ok, but with a mortgage, a wife and children, I wouldn't take it now.  Experience in a showroom may help, but its not going to give you the experience of the stress of going solo.

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I hear you as I have the wife, kids and mortgage. But I have a strong desire to buy and sell lately and am willing to do whatever it takes. I’m the son of a business man and most members of my family own businesses I feel it’s in the blood sort of speak. I also have a sickly work ethic. Every business is stressful and risky. I also have some savings and am getting an enhanced redundancy packet. The main reason I want to do this is because I love dealing with people and have been reading a lot of sales books lately and I just feel it’s a good move and a good fit for me personally. Of course that may change as I learn more about this trade 

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Good luck Joe,

I started out 2 years ago with no previous car trading experience.

I spent 8 weeks just visiting the auction and hours researching the business and to be fair I still didn’t have an understanding of what it was really like.

What works for one trader doesn’t necessarily work for you, network with as many people as you can and learn to live the job. I work more hours now than I have ever done. 

I was in a fortunate position that I didn’t need to earn a fortune to live. If I am honest, if I did I probably wouldn’t still be doing it now.  This is not to say I don’t think the rewards are achievable because they certainly are, but you have to find your niche.

2 years later and I am making money - ( Just ) and have a little more knowledge, but for instance I brought a crap car this week from auction that has a major fault that will wipe half of my profit for this month. It is inevitable that this will happen to you at some point.

Any experience you can gain in a dealer I’d good but running your own business is totally different. Definitely buy the download and read it, you will pick up useful info I am sure.

anyway, best of luck,

Be prepared for a lot of hard work and become as mentally tough as you can,  dealing with retail customers is hard, they all think you are dodgy and trying to have them over, but in my limited experience they are the dodgy one ha ha.

Regards Dean.

 

 

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2 minutes ago, tradex said:

You msy wish to change the name of your company though....Mayday Motors:D

LIKE

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Hi and welcome. I’ve recently started out as a doorstepper 3 months ago, I’m fortunate in so much as I still have my full time job and it affords me the freedom to do this as well. I guess my advice would be to spend some time working out how much cash you need to have a life each month, how many cars you would need to sell to make that cash, how many cars you would need to stock to sell that many (and if your funds will allow that), as well as getting an idea for how much profit you’ll clear on each car of course. I say this because my experience so far is that it takes longer to sell than I expected, it also takes longer to prep thank I expected, and therefore stock turnaround is less. Not an issue for me, it will just take longer to grow the business to a point where I can leave my full time employment, but it might cause issues to anyone who relies on this as their sole income. Good luck though, I hope it works for you!

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hardest parts is not buying legins

this comes from experience

so buy your stock carefully

a small profit is better than no profit

good luck

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2 hours ago, tradex said:

You msy wish to change the name of your company though....Mayday Motors:D

 I’ll change the name ha 

Thanks for the comments everyone. This forum is brilliant for a wannabe car trader like me 

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7 hours ago, Mayday Motors said:

Hello everyone,

My name is Joe, I’m 31 and have done various jobs throughout my working life like tiling, barman, car valeting and working in a lab. I’m getting made redundant in September so have a bit of cash. I’m really interested in starting out in this game and would appreciate any advice at all. I think I’m going to try to find a position in sales at a local garage to get some experience etc but am half tempted to learn what I need to online and just start on my own ? I like this forum and see that there’s lots to get through and I will also buy the digital book and have a read of that this evening.

Thanks,

Joe

A job in local garage is a good idea for a while, you will learn much and quickly, if you skip this step then set a limit on initial funding, too much funding starting out can lead to disaster, don't be tempted to spend / buy more if things aren't going well - instead revue why and act on it fast, only introduce more funding when your business model is working ie giving you a profit, you'll not be getting a redundancy out of this job so go careful with the money from your current one.

good luck.

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I jumped straight in, though my business partner knew more about cars than me. It's a learning curve, and sometimes lessons are costly. I personally would jump right in as opposed to working elsewhere. Or if you do, limit your time there. Sometimes the best learning comes from doing it yourself.

Things do go wrong, sometimes massively so, and you might not take a wage in a while at times. It sounds like you have a good work ethic, and as long as you know what you're in for, then you'll do fine.

Bear in mind your neighbours might be a pain.

Shop carefully, prep well, factor your margins properly, and good luck.

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I worked in main dealer land for approx 15 years before working for myself which has been nearly another 15 years and the only thing I found is that they are 2 different worlds but I will say working at a reasonable sized garage will get you used to dealing with Joe public but the similarity for me ended there, there is a lot to working for yourself that is only learnt when your doing it.

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Don't do it, unless you go all out with a unit and 10 cars put your money and energy elsewhere. You'll be lucky to scrape a meager wage working from home and you'll have to work 20 hours a day and deal with all of the mind numbing shit that comes with the Job such as our wonderful members of society visiting your actual house which is your safe place with no intention of actually buying the car they've been messaging about on Facebook at 11pm for 3 days!

Sorry to be "that" guy but It's a real eye opener this job is, I thought ah it'll be piss easy, 1k profit on each car I'll be dancing to the bank LOL, as if! It's a fookin nightmare trying to make 2k in your pocket each and every single month, cars are hard to source and without a network of contacts you're fooked, prep is hard unless you have a trusted crew which takes a while to build, my advise is unless you have good real world knowledge of the industry (not a Google specialist) and how it works dont put yourself through the hassle. Everyone including me thought/thinks it's an easy way to riches, Its not and it'll drive you barmy trying to get there. :D

#ilovemyjob #getmeouttahere

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agree with all the above...................... it is hard graft 15 hour days to start being on standby for the one call and one chance that day to make some money, It does sound easy and it does give the impression £1000 per car is easy but reality is seldom as easy as it looks, You are on your own  self employment is a lonely place you have no one ( given your minimal experience) to ask advice from to seek guiadance from or to  really know if what your doing is  path to sucsess or failure, I had the benefite of over 20 years in PLC dealership world and  like most on hrere i lived and breathed the business at someone elses risk and had a sallary from them, So when i started out  you could say i had been through 20 plus years of training leading to that moment.

 

Get it right  its still tough but can be rewarding, Get it wrong and all the hours and stress are still there  but  its litterally costing you money then to be self employed and  i guess thats no fun at all, we on this forum can give you guidance and advice but we wont be there selling your cars, Talking to your customers and giving you money for your bills all that is down to you, Having worked with a load of newbies  with no experience it honestly does take a minimum of 2 years for you to even start be able to call your self a sales person, The amount of buyers that a new sales person burns is shocking as a sales manager in dealership and you will not even know what you are doing wrong will you, In dealership you will be mentored and have chances to see he others in action to pick up the tools of the trade to equip you will all the "one liners" 

 

I dont think i could recomend this job to anyone who has a family and  a mortgage, Starting out with Nil experience in this cut throat business is a huge risk, You need to be a Great White to survive in this world, Survive the first 2 years and i do mean "survive" and you may just go on to bigger and better things, But if all you are thinking is its easy money will my  friend this in reallity is not the case at all

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This is real life advice, you honestly can't just "learn online" to do this, just read my threads and you'll see why, it's impossible. You can learn some things online such as how to setup the business and what's required like insurance etc but what you can't learn and what is possibly THE most important skill is buying correctly. It's not as simple as "just buy a car from auction at the right price". You need to spend hours searching for target cars, then you have to check them out including MOT history, pricing, HPI, condition, work required etc and after you've done that on say 10 cars you'll be lucky to buy one at auction with enough margin on it to make a profit worth the effort. This is why, in my opinion, if you're working at home selling a handful of cars it's just not worth the effort unless you absolutely love it, I believe you need a minimum of 8 to keep you ticking over minimising the risk of selling nothing in a month. 

These questions might help you make a good decision:

Are you prepared to spend most of your day sourcing cars either Sat at your desk or at an auction full of sharks?

Will you have most of your day free without the distraction of kids at home? 

Are you prepared to use your own family home for viewings? I've done it for 6 months and regret it, you only need one nut job and that's it, safety is compromised

Can you juggle your kids around to do home viewings professionally? 

Are you prepared to clean your property for each viewing? 

How will you do test drives if your wife is at work and you have the kid/s? 

Are you prepared for the inevitable nosey dickhead neighbours giving you grief? 

Are you going to use your own money or will you get funding? 

How many cars do you plan on stocking? 

What cars do you plan on stocking? 

Do you have mechanical knowledge of cars? 

What will you do with offering warranty? 

What prep will you do yourself? 

Do you have local contacts for Mot's, bodywork, repairs, tyres, parts etc? 

Do you know of a location to take professional quality images? 

Do you have a contingency plan incase you sell nothing in a month? 

Have your researched advertising platforms? 

Will you have a website? 

Will you open multiple trade accounts to buy cars? 

Do you have any competition locally? 

Are you willing to work 7 days per week sacrificing family time for viewings? 

Will you become FCA registered and offer finance? 

Will you offer card payments for deposits? 

Lots of questions I know only trying to help you make a sound decision 

Edited by MrV

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On 30/06/2019 at 3:06 PM, DBDlloyds said:

Good luck Joe,

I started out 2 years ago with no previous car trading experience.

I spent 8 weeks just visiting the auction and hours researching the business and to be fair I still didn’t have an understanding of what it was really like.

What works for one trader doesn’t necessarily work for you, network with as many people as you can and learn to live the job. I work more hours now than I have ever done. 

I was in a fortunate position that I didn’t need to earn a fortune to live. If I am honest, if I did I probably wouldn’t still be doing it now.  This is not to say I don’t think the rewards are achievable because they certainly are, but you have to find your niche.

2 years later and I am making money - ( Just ) and have a little more knowledge, but for instance I brought a crap car this week from auction that has a major fault that will wipe half of my profit for this month. It is inevitable that this will happen to you at some point.

Any experience you can gain in a dealer I’d good but running your own business is totally different. Definitely buy the download and read it, you will pick up useful info I am sure.

anyway, best of luck,

Be prepared for a lot of hard work and become as mentally tough as you can,  dealing with retail customers is hard, they all think you are dodgy and trying to have them over, but in my limited experience they are the dodgy one ha ha.

Regards Dean.

 

 

Well said Dean, sell the turd quickly and move on mate. 

On 30/06/2019 at 11:34 PM, have a word with the wife said:

all buyers are liars

there's a bum for every seat

and don't let the barstewards get you down

remember those three and you won't go too far wrong :)

 

:lol: so true

10 hours ago, MrV said:

Don't do it, unless you go all out with a unit and 10 cars put your money and energy elsewhere. You'll be lucky to scrape a meager wage working from home and you'll have to work 20 hours a day and deal with all of the mind numbing shit that comes with the Job such as our wonderful members of society visiting your actual house which is your safe place with no intention of actually buying the car they've been messaging about on Facebook at 11pm for 3 days!

Sorry to be "that" guy but It's a real eye opener this job is, I thought ah it'll be piss easy, 1k profit on each car I'll be dancing to the bank LOL, as if! It's a fookin nightmare trying to make 2k in your pocket each and every single month, cars are hard to source and without a network of contacts you're fooked, prep is hard unless you have a trusted crew which takes a while to build, my advise is unless you have good real world knowledge of the industry (not a Google specialist) and how it works dont put yourself through the hassle. Everyone including me thought/thinks it's an easy way to riches, Its not and it'll drive you barmy trying to get there. :D

#ilovemyjob #getmeouttahere

Yeah, but it’s so addictive, it gets into your blood. I couldn’t and wouldn’t want to be anything else. 

On 30/06/2019 at 2:32 PM, Mayday Motors said:

Hello everyone,

My name is Joe, I’m 31 and have done various jobs throughout my working life like tiling, barman, car valeting and working in a lab. I’m getting made redundant in September so have a bit of cash. I’m really interested in starting out in this game and would appreciate any advice at all. I think I’m going to try to find a position in sales at a local garage to get some experience etc but am half tempted to learn what I need to online and just start on my own ? I like this forum and see that there’s lots to get through and I will also buy the digital book and have a read of that this evening.

Thanks,

Joe

Joe, welcome. All I’ll say is follow your heart otherwise you will always regret not making it happen. If it’s in your blood, and you have the determination you will succeed. Remember it’s a rollercoaster. 

Best of luck. 

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Its not easy. Its not fun .its really stressful trying to make ends meat

All punters are liars no matter what they say. However i really do enjoy it.

I have been going at it part time for around 6 months properly now after previously selling the odd car here and there normally after i was bored of it.

People on here and really helpful and have a wealth of knowledge but make sure you ask nicely and the correct way (I learnt the hard way)

We started with a few thousand pound and two cars. To date we haven't taken any salary from the company and all the money goes back in. We currently have 10 cars in stock but only 3 for sale as there simply isn't enough hours in the day to prep all these cars repair what needs fixing paint what needs painting and mot them. We will invetiably make the jump soon enough to full time but make sure you have a business plan and also a contingency plan in place..

We found it useful to find somewhat of a specialty ours being minis. As such we have a good relationship with our local bmw mini technician and are not afraid to get our hands dirty ourselves with the cars.

A good mechanical knowledge will always help and keep costs down significantly.

If you never do it you will always ask what if but if you do it might not work.

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There  are quite a few other things you need to think about as well.  I was amazed how much additional admin there was to think about. What about a web site?  Do you need one and can you make it yourself or will you have to pay someone?  Dealer insurance and trade plates?  Accounts with auction houses?  Setting up trade accounts with AT, eBay etc. Email addresses, domain names and telephone numbers. All of these thinks suck your time and can be sorted. There is a wealth of information on here about how to do it all but don’t underestimate how long it all takes!  Best of luck though if you decide to plough ahead! 

Edited by Scrawf
English

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Also dont forget whilst opening an account with the auction houses thats easy you will then have to buy some cars at silly buyers rate before they move you up, granted these days they do move you a lot quicker than they used to mainly to ensure they keep your business but the first 5-10 cars will be painfully expensive, and thats at each auction house.

Also factor in delivery / collection costs default storage costs if your unable to collect within 3 days bca are brutal with this to newbies. 

Like most things in the motor trade it changes week on week our nearest bca / manhiem is bristol / birmingham but we spend more money at blackbush as they have more of the stock we sell so we have to pay delivery, so dont think just because there is an auction house an hour away its where your going to buy it doesnt work out like that.

some cracking advise from above print it off read it inside out over and over again. 

 

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8 minutes ago, justina3 said:

 

some cracking advise from above print it off read it inside out over and over again. 

 

this

i was still looking at the runners and riders when the wife had gone to bed at quarter to midnight last night

this job is 18 hours physical or mental

seen a lot go mental doing it (seriously)

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12 hours ago, MrV said:

and deal with all of the mind numbing shit that comes with the Job such as our wonderful members of society visiting your actual house which is your safe place with

this

On 6/30/2019 at 2:57 PM, Mayday Motors said:

The main reason I want to do this is because I love dealing with people and have been reading a lot of sales books lately and I just feel it’s a good move and a good fit for me personally.

Welcome and good luck.

3 Parts to this job. 1.Buying, 2. knowing how to prep, 3. dealing with the public and more importantly, understanding what goes on in their heads. No matter how much or little you know about cars, its useless without number 3. The nicest people in world can turn into complicated, neurotic arseholes as soon as they put on their 'car buying hat' and become 'a customer'. Learning how to control and understand customers is a huge part of the job.

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I have been doing it 3 years started with just an interest in cars, no contacts (apart from place I take my personal car for mot)

Its a bit doom and gloom on here.

Whats hard, I buy a car, I drive to paint (if needed), I drive it to service/mot, I drive it to valeters, put photos online.

Viewing by appointment at my home address (most cars kept on some storage land).

Sell 10 retail a month trade 3 or 4 on. Around 10 advertised at any one time.

Hardest bit at first was sourcing cars but I find it easy now. (I have more than I have room for, hence trading some on).

Don't have many problems but only buy cars that are good examples and from reliable brands.

Get trade plates, get traders policy and put more effort into the buying than everything else put together.

 

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Again much talk on here of auctions / prep being what makes this job go round and round and hard, that's true if you let it be, forget auctions if you are starting out, and don't confuse auction prices with what a car is worth, looking at the market will give you the true values, to start with try and buy local, there are plenty of private ads and dealerships looking to dispose of cars locally, be prepared to be told to fook off a lot but you will get out what you put in, whilst doing this you will not be spunking your money at auction competing with experienced buyers or buying problems, and allowing for auction fees and transport costs of circa 300 then that's 300 more that you can offer locally, don't buy cars with to much prep unless you are aware of the actual costs involved first, learn to prep yourself, this isn't a suite and tie career.

as a newcomer sadly you cant buy experience, but what you will have is plenty of time on your hands, use it wisely, spend your capital wisely, be prepared to not earn money to begin with, don't get sucked into a routine that does not work, stop or change your methods fast if it's not working, whether you enjoy it or not don't forget it is all about making money.

39 minutes ago, BIGNIT said:

I have been doing it 3 years started with just an interest in cars, no contacts (apart from place I take my personal car for mot)

Its a bit doom and gloom on here.

Whats hard, I buy a car, I drive to paint (if needed), I drive it to service/mot, I drive it to valeters, put photos online.

Viewing by appointment at my home address (most cars kept on some storage land).

Sell 10 retail a month trade 3 or 4 on. Around 10 advertised at any one time.

Hardest bit at first was sourcing cars but I find it easy now. (I have more than I have room for, hence trading some on).

Don't have many problems but only buy cars that are good examples and from reliable brands.

Get trade plates, get traders policy and put more effort into the buying than everything else put together.

 

very nice to hear this, i'm going to stick my neck out and guess you don't buy all your stock from auction?? hence here's proof that if you manage your time properly and have a bigger outlook on how to source stock then this job is enjoyable and pays well.

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Hi Joe

 

I dont know how much your redundancy is, but it will have a bearing on how this is going to work out for you. As a new starter, you will be buying from scratch. lets say that you want to sell 5 cars a month. To do this, you will need to be advertising about 10 cars. 

If thats your starting point, assume that you are paying an average of 2 k each car ( any less and its hard to make a reasonable margin consistently), you should be able to retail for 2995.

Prep. allow 200 per car.

Valet, 40

Insurance - from 2k upwards. 

Trade plates £165.

So thats about 25k to start with. if you sell 5, you will get about £2500 profit, assuming that you are honest with the VAT man. Bear in mind advertising costs etc.

And you will need to have a cash reserve for the recon you dont expect, warranty pot, other bills etc. 

I came into this 7 years ago with 15 years main dealer experience of sales and sales manager experience. I still dont earn as much as I did in the main dealer. But I do have a better work/life balance.

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