I am 29 years old, started a used car dealership 6 years ago. We promote no pressure sales and I'm here to tell you not ALL used car salesmen are scumbags.

The request came from here --> http://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/1vbozt/car_salesmen_of_reddit_what_kind_of_shady_shit/ceqrrno

My Proof: http://i.imgur.com/hmES34V.jpg

Comments: 486 • Responses: 123  • Date: 


Just a helpful tip for our fellow redditors here and /u/tiptopauto you can always use /r/askcarsales after this AMA is over and /u/tiptopauto I'd love to have you as a mod with us.

tiptopauto18 karma

I'd be more than happy to.

HeyImBlake22 karma

I bought a used car from a scumbag salesman two years ago. It was useless a year later. What's something I should ALWAYS look for in used cars? - 19 years old and I'm going on my 4th car :|

tiptopauto30 karma

I'm not saying this is what you did...but generally a car thats 3gs or less is unpredictable.

Maybe for your first car you get something that might not be the prettiest but maybe reliable. Like an older pontiac vibe, they are great cars and won't break the bank...not the prettiest but will get you from point a - b.

There is no one thing to look at. sorry nothing sexy about that answer.

YouAreNumber620 karma

..And the Pontiac Vibe is Toyota where it counts, basically the Matrix I understand.

Same thing with the Chevy Prizm/Toyota Corolla.

tiptopauto17 karma

Exactly....getting the Toyota without paying a premium for a badge

PrairieKid8 karma

I am going to look at a used Vibe this weekend! Thanks for the confidence!

tiptopauto7 karma

highly recommend them!

NukeDarfur7 karma

I love my Vibe; I just wish it was called something else. When I was still shopping for it, I was pretty amazed that a Matrix would go for $1000 - $2000 more than Vibes of similar age and condition. It's the same damn car.

tiptopauto11 karma

EXACT same guts. You're just paying for the emblem.

zachbeany3219 karma

What's the most expensive car you've had on the lot / sold?

tiptopauto55 karma

The most expensive car we have is a 2008 R8 that we just got in. It will be selling for $89,999

nate8006 karma

What's your cost on something like that?

tiptopauto37 karma

I paid 80. Spent 3000$ of recondition already.

But this is my daily driver so I didn't buy it to sell it...if that makes sense, I would love to drive it for a year and sell it for what I paid. Drive and R8 for free :)

MjrMjr3 karma

If you had to buy parts for a car like that, what would you do? Do you have any advantage over a regular guy? I happen to know someone who is an Audi service advisor and he showed me in their pricing system that R8 floor mats are $750.

tiptopauto2 karma

I do get dealer rate on parts (15% off retail)

StamfordBoysFC-41 karma

Isn't that scummy in itself though? There's a local dealership in town and sometimes he gets Vipers, or Elise's and he lets his young sun drive it around town and dog the shit out of it for a couple of months, then they sell them...douchemove IMO.

Itsaboutothappen18 karma

Why would that be a douche move? It's a perk of being a business owner.

If he owned a trucking company, would it be a douche move to use one of his dad's truck's when moving day comes instead of renting a truck?

StamfordBoysFC-16 karma

That doesn't even correlate with the scenario I explained. I clearly stated his son drove these cars and ragged on these cars then sold them. So you're telling me it's okay to beat a car up and then sell it for the exact same price you bought it at? If you were the buyer I think you would choose not to.

tiptopauto11 karma

Yeah that could be a douche move on their behalf.... I'm not ragging on any cars, I enjoy driving them and like I said I took it to Audi and spent 3gs on it to make sure its in good condition.

thePuppyStomper6 karma

I would say it a douche move if you aren't getting sloppy bjs in that r8

tiptopauto8 karma

I'll let my wife know :)

livejamie14 karma

How do you feel about dealerships lobbying against Tesla and making it impossible for them to sell directly to consumers

tiptopauto14 karma

Really doesn't bother me. (that they sell to consumers)

aLousyFatKid12 karma

In your opinion, is it smarter to buy new or used vehicles? Why?

tiptopauto26 karma


If I win the lottery one day and want to buy a car, I would buy a newer car with the least amount of mileage. Someone else takes the hit of the new car and you can save 15-20% if its 6 months old and has a couple thousand kms on it.

arunsballoon2 karma

But if it's newish and someone is selling it, wouldn't that indicate something might be wrong?

tiptopauto11 karma

No not at all, people change their minds or something comes up. I took a 2013 civic with 6000kms on trade for a minivan because the woman got pregnant unexpectedly with twins.

NotchbackKITT12 karma

What are the tell-tale signs that negotiations have reached their end, and that it's time for me to make a decision either way?

tiptopauto11 karma

Are we talking new or used vehicle?

FranklinChainsaw2 karma

what would the differences be?

tiptopauto21 karma

Used cars have less room to play, if the salesmen is letting you walk then you have truly reach the end point.

New cars are different, end of the month is the best time if they need to hit their quota (not the salesmen but dealership) they will sell it below cost in order to hit their goals (some manufactures will give the dealership a kickback based on number sold. So if X company reaches their goal of 50, the manufacture will kickback $1500 per unit (x50) so if you happen to buy the 50th car on the last day of their accounting month they will lose 3gs on that car in order to hit the big target of 50x1500= 75gs

jhaluska11 karma

This American Life did a recent episode on car dealerships and went over this point. However, I would assume this strategy only works if they're below their goals.

tiptopauto9 karma

Thats the BEST way to get a great deal..but not all manufacturers do that and I personally think it lowers your brand value, because all you care about is putting cars over the curb.

froschkonig11 karma

Any point in buying a "certified" pre owned vehicle as opposed to a normal used car?

drive2fast9 karma

I am an independent mechanic and spent 8 years doing pre purchase inspections for used cars, paid by the customer making the purchase.

I found only one car in 8 years that did not have any hidden defects. ONE CAR.

Pay YOUR mechanic $100-$150 for a solid inspection and his opinion on that car. If he doesn't put it on a hoist and rip all 4 wheels off, or fails to give you a 150 or so point checklist with his signature on it, walk away.

He'll also know if those models are kinda crappy or worth buying. Use said inspection report to haggle the price or have said issues resolved. I have never ever had a customer who regretted doing that. Especially the one with the mythical perfect used car.

tiptopauto9 karma

Some customers ask to take it to their mechanics.

We have no issues with that. If there is a problem we would like to know before hand too.

tiptopauto6 karma

Yes, We have to compete with the all the time. However for the most part it's not worth the added cost and they are not doing much more than a used car dealership will do...Only benefit is some manufactures will extend the factory warranty. BMW certified pre-owned will cost you 2-3gs more than buying from a used car lot, personally not worth it....However if you can get the price close to what a used car dealership is selling it for...go certified pre owned

MjrMjr3 karma

Are you saying that you'd feel ok owning a BMW out of warranty?

tiptopauto2 karma

Doesn't scare me!

froschkonig1 karma

I am looking for a new midsize sedan (torn between altima, sonata, or camry at the moment) any suggestions on the three? I am thinking ill go new though since ill drive it at least the next 7ish years.

tiptopauto3 karma

All three are great cars, I can't knock any of them.

Your best bet is go and test drive all three... you might hate the way one drives or be bothered by blind spots.

Novazilla10 karma

would you ever or have you ever considered selling cars for bitcoins? I am dying to buy a car with bitcoin...

tiptopauto29 karma

I'd be to scared lol I run a very honest business and would never want to be red flagged.

GeekInBelgium7 karma

I'm pretty sure in the US this would be seen as selling a car for cash. That raises some serious flags for legitimate businesses.

mozerdozer9 karma

I went to hhgregg once (basically Best Buy) and the rep said that one time I guy bought over $10,000 worth of TVs and just dropped a stack of cash on the table to pay (they let him too).

6aff4 karma


tiptopauto9 karma

I get charged to deposit cash....sounds crazy eh? With my bank plan I can deposit up to 20gs a month no charge after that it's something like 1.30$ /1000$ cash deposited.

ArchieDoodles4 karma

My dad always offers paying in cash for a discount when bargaining. Never asked why.

tiptopauto8 karma

Works in some cases, but if you finance the car the bank gives us a kickback...my average is 300$ nothing crazy but in this case I would prefer financing than cash.

SadWriter9 karma

No question, just would like to say thank you for never scamming or screwing someone over. My uncle went through being horridly scammed on a "barely used" Monte Carlo that ended up having endless amounts of problems within a month. I appreciate honest salemen in today's society.

tiptopauto10 karma

Honestly sometimes it's out of our hands...It's a used car but we try our best to rectify any issues.

jessejamess9 karma


tiptopauto22 karma

I went to school to become a chartered accountant (CPA in the states) I borrowed 50gs from my dad and paid him back within 2 years plus paid for my own tuition and mortgage.

EgaoNoGenki-V14 karma

$50k from dad? It takes money to make money! I guess that doesn't make you exactly a rags-to-riches tale, does it?

What does/did your dad do?

tiptopauto5 karma

My dad was retired at the time due to his cancer by trade he is a mechanic, thus I have been around cars alot.

I am super lucky that my parents were supportive of me and wanted me to succeed. My father came to Canada with nothing and he has done well for himself.

amishbreakfast9 karma

How did Cash-4-Clunkers effect your business?

tiptopauto65 karma

Not that much, we don't sell many 2999 or less cars because they are too unpredictable and we don't want to sell anyone lemons. Not worth the headache and bad karma.

theninjallama22 karma

here's some karma to compensate

tiptopauto23 karma

Thank you kindly.

Valens9 karma


tiptopauto26 karma

All have good models and problematic models. ....but my dad who is a mechanic would say LEXUS!

TyGreeny11 karma

I work for Lexus so obviously I like your dad.

tiptopauto14 karma

He's had an older LS for a while, over 400,000kms loves that thing more than me.

The_Bass_Junkie5 karma

What's your view on a Lexus Isf 2011? Good all rounder?

tiptopauto6 karma

Great cars, nice sedan with a cool look.

Nothing bad to say.

emucheese8 karma

Do you ever consider investing in some wacky inflatable flailing arm tube man to promote business?

tiptopauto7 karma

All my friends want me to, but I will stick to inflatable gorillas for now :) Kidding I don't have either.

But for a Promotion we did crush a couple cars with a hummer. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Erwb2PBUYm4

emucheese3 karma

Haha, awesome. But now you have to crush the hummer with a bigger car... Might I suggest one of these: http://youtu.be/cDoRmT0iRic

tiptopauto4 karma

I saw that video couple months ago

I would love to drive The Marauder for a day, anything more than that would probably get annoying fast.

Whats_Up44447 karma

How does one acquire so many used cars?

tiptopauto10 karma

I'm lucky that I've made lots of connections with new car dealerships, so I get to buy off makes (i.e Gm will wholesale me a Ford on their lot). Local Auctions too (about 5000 cars for sale a week), but I don't frequent them as much any more.

Itsalrightwithme1 karma

Is this to suggest that if I were to look for a new car, I should sell my old one to a user car dealership instead of trading it in?

Vice-versa, what are your thoughts on buying a used car from a used car dealership versus pre-owned certified at a (new car) dealership?

If it matters, and since you mentioned the R8, I have a 2007 A3 and I am eye-ing a pre-owned / used newer model Q5. So I'm looking at entry-level luxury cars (assuming that's not an oxymoron).

Thanks for doing this IamA!

tiptopauto4 karma

In Ontario you get the tax savings. So if you trade in a car for 10,000 plus 13% tax you net 11,300. So basically you can to look at the market and see can you get more than 11,300 for your car to make it worth it.

Certified pre-owned (CPO) is 30% legit 70% rubbish. Before all the new car guys get mad at me, let me explain.

When I bought my R8 I took it to the audi dealer paid 295$ and got a certified pre owned check list done, the car needed a couple things that they fixed. Therefore now I have a r8 that is CPO, now when I sell that car I can try and say its CPO but customers will tell me ONLY Audi can sell it as CPO and they will for a premium at that. Where the CPO does help some manufactures offer an extended warranty (2 years) for their CPO...basically compare the price of a regular certified one with extended warranty vs a CPO...if the prices are the same then go CPO if you can save a couple thousand then don't pay for CPO.

Boner4SCP1067 karma

Have you ever found anything odd or weird in a car or about a car after you bought it from someone?

tiptopauto49 karma

Couple things come to mind,

Bought a cop car once and found a couple dime bags of week under the seat. I'm assuming the person who was arrested had some on them and hid it under their seat.

We found this super old log book it was from world war 1 and had a soldier's name and all these amazing stories of people he met and people who had died etc. We gave it to the police hoping they would find out who this man was (had his name DOB etc)...couple weeks later this old man comes in all teary eyed and told us it was his dad's book and he was so grateful we gave it to the police.

oldschoolfl7 karma

All salespeople would say it's "no pressure". How are your online reviews?

tiptopauto12 karma

This is based on Google reviews

Sam Besharati 4 months ago purchased a 2010 mazda 3 from tip top in april. I spent almost 4 months researching mazda 3's at different dealerships in the durham region and even a few in toronto. tip top was by far the easiest to deal with. they treated me like a friend and ...More Mark Morissette Mark Morissette 5 months ago My wife and I purchased a used Chrysler 300 from Tip Top auto several months back – the service we received was excellent, the sales people were very upfront and straightforward with the transaction from the moment we stepped on the property ...More Adam Hare Adam Hare 9 months ago Tip Top has the best prices by far! And even more importantly, the service is like no other. Zero pressure, no hassle, they truly give you first class care. My whole family have now bought vehicles from Tip Top and will continue to do so! A Google User A Google User 2 years ago Looked at over 30 cars of the same make and model elsewhere, and then decided to buy my car from here. Owned it for the better part of this year and couldn't be more satisfied with it. Will be looking here first when it's time to buy again. Would ...More

rtlsdr_is_fun9 karma

Link to verify. OP probably didn't post it because it is their Google+ page and didn't want to self advertise.

tiptopauto8 karma

Thank you, thats a lot better to read lol

oldschoolfl2 karma

Nice...you passed the test! There aren't many small dealers without bad reviews

tiptopauto3 karma

Everyone gets bad reviews, its part of the business, but we just try our best to fix any problems before that.

surakian7 karma

I've been raised by mechanics and estimators and car sales men all of my life. I have always wanted to know, what is the rate of used cars you've had on sale that have to be repaired before they are sellable? Is there a limit to the damage of a car (like minor dents and scratches in the paint) where you cannot buy it or sell it?

tiptopauto7 karma


Some dealers will buy the car even if EVERY panel needs paint and can still make a profit, for me I look at the headache vs payoff. I have no shortage of cars so I don't need to go that far. Rule of thumb is if you buy it cheap enough it can be worth it....I just don't waste my time with it.

ArmoredLunchbox7 karma

What could i get from your shop for $ 3000?

tiptopauto9 karma

I probably would tell you nicely that I don't want to sell you car for $3000

I'm worried about the long term reliability and don't want you to hate me if something happens.

Nine_Cats9 karma

You should get a small collection of good RC cars and jokingly bring them out when someone asks for a really cheap car.

tiptopauto5 karma

I like the way you think.

cashe3076 karma

Have you ever lost a substantial amount of money on a car ?

tiptopauto30 karma

Of course! Its part of the game.... worst one ever was a ford diesel. bought everything was normal, sold it, 2 weeks later customer complains about white smoke....long story short 6gs later.

We offered to give customers money back, he wanted the truck. Total deal ended up losing 4500$

But that customer has sent 3 customers into us, because the issue he had was not part of certification or anything, we could of said sorry not our problem it was ok when we sold. Rather we fixed it he was happy and in the grand scheme of things it was worth it.

goalieman3927 karma

The white smoke thing on a ford diesel happened to me too. It was basically part of the recirculation system (for emissions) melted and allowed water to enter the engine, hydrolocking the pistons. Had to have a ton of shit replaced. Ford Diesels after about 2003-4 have been garbage imo.

tiptopauto11 karma

I hate to say it but you're right. I won't buy a 2003 -2010 Ford Diesel. Supposedly the newer ones are better but I'm not sure.

HarveyManfrenjensend9 karma

7.3L powerstroke is bullet proof. The 6.0 is complete trash.

tiptopauto4 karma

For the most part yes.

Am3ricanN3ro3 karma

If you buy a 6.0, replace the head studs and gaskets, (honestly some people just replace the whole head), and delete the EGR. Those were the problems.

tiptopauto3 karma

I'm no mechanic but thank you for the heads up.

French876 karma

How do you feel about buying/selling modified cars?

Mine is modified beyond the point of return since it has a non-OEM paint job (no it's not a wild fucking paint job. It's just BMW Alpine White paint job on an Infiniti G35)

It has an aftermarket front bumper and side skirts. (I hate the term 'bodykit' because it's so associated with the fucking transformer esque shit seen on 1992 Civics after the "fast and the furious" came out. Mine is not so "in-your-face")

It's also lowered (properly. Full true coilover setup) and has some awesome top tier wheels (iForged Aero. Discontinued and retail at around $4800).

I've had the car for like 7 years now and am kind of just getting tired of living the low life. Having to worry about speed bumps, entrances/driveways, and causing traffic jams as I go sideways through that shit is simply not something I really care to do anymore.

I could return the car to stock height, but then it will look off as fuck because my wheels will stick out (they have -3 camber right now) and it will just not... look right. A stock height car iwth wheels and body work is lols.

what the fuck do I do to sell this thing?

tiptopauto17 karma

Sell it the way it is.

If I see a modified car it doesn't scare me and there is a market for them...obviously a smaller market but based on your mods seems that it is done tastefully and shouldn't have a problem finding a buyer.

BelievesInGod5 karma

Can i see a picture please :3?

French8713 karma

Here you go!

Kind of blurry, but it's the best pic available right now:P

BelievesInGod8 karma

I approve.

tiptopauto6 karma

As do I.

Iplaymeinreallife6 karma

How many prior owners did the dealership have before you bought it? Was it in good condition?

tiptopauto4 karma

I started it from scratch

Hot_for_Hagrid5 karma

I worked for a used car lot similar to yours, with only flat pay and very very small commission. we had a regional thing going, with about 15 lots over 3 states. We didnt sell for cash but owned a finance company as well.

My question is How often do people try old sales tactics on you, or think they can just act tough to get a deal? and what is the 'toughest' customer you have had dealings with?

tiptopauto20 karma

It's hard because people mean well and think what people have told them will work in negotiating prices.

But if we are selling a car for 5,999 you can't offer 3000 CASH out the door, there is no more margins like that, just doesn't exist! We explain why that's not possible and for the most part they get it...you still get the young kid with his grand-pa saying 3000 or we leave. To which we reply sorry we can't earn your business.

Toughest customer was a 2006 Ram 2500 diesel we sold her. She drove it home, called us back saying she took it to her mechanic and it needs ball joints at a cost of 1200$ I asked her to bring the truck back so we can take a look at it and if it does need the work we will do it. She said she did not feel safe driving it back, and we offered to pick it up then she lost her mind and said we are crooks and assholes for selling a truck that would have never passed certification. I called her personally and told her if she felt she was taken advantage of I would come with a check in full and pay her back and take the truck home (she's had it for over a month now) Told me to F*ck off and she is going to sue us.

I called OMVIC (the governing body for used cars) told them the situation, they were happy that I called in to rectify the issue before it escalated, they told me I did everything right and there wasn't more that I could do.

A week passes by I get a nasty letter in the mail from her saying she took it to a Dodge dealer and showed the ball joints were moving. I spoke to my mechanic who owns the exact same truck and said the "play" in the ball joints is normal and in spec with what dodge has on a brand new truck. I called her back and said that everything is NORMAL but again I would buy the truck back, she hung up on me...calls OMVIC tell them everything that it's in spec and he offered to buy the car back and she's not happy. They told her WHAT more could he do? He's gone above and beyond what we expect , she told them to F off too and haven't heard from her since.

Sal_the_man6 karma

Wow that's pretty ridiculous of her. I respect your efforts

tiptopauto21 karma

I go to sleep at night knowing I've never screwed over a customer.

Sal_the_man4 karma

Word :)

Btw do you consider yourself a car enthusiast? I read you have an R8 to putt around in, I myself drive a 91 Toyota MR2

tiptopauto7 karma

I used to be a HUGE car enthusiast, then you realize that its a piece of metal with tires. That being said I do have some cars on my bucket list that I would love to own/drive...the usual lambo, ferrari etc.

Atheistafterlife5 karma

Why not just tell us exactly how much you payed for the car, how much you'd be making off of me... etc...

Maybe you ont be able to rip people off as easy but you would definitely get lots of customers that way

tiptopauto7 karma

In some cases when people don't believe how much I make on a car I have pulled out the bill of sale to show them.

Most come in and realize that I'm one of the bottom 5-10 cheapest so they beleive me that we don't have that much margins.

howgaycanyouget5 karma

A lot of people seem to think dealers should barely make any money on a car. They forget that the profit not only has to pay all overhead at the dealership but also all of the person's bills and living expenses. I think it's better to just settle on a fair price that the buyer can afford; between the internet, blackbook/nada, word of mouth, craigslist, other dealerships prices and personal experience it's pretty easy to decide whether or not you're getting ripped off on a car.

tiptopauto2 karma


Our business model is price cheap, move quick so the consumer doesn't really waste time negotiating...they've done their homework and know they are getting a good price.

Hogan5245 karma

Does your dealership service the vehicles it sells? If not, where do you get it done prior to sale?

tiptopauto7 karma

We do not, that is something we are looking to add when the right opportunity comes up. because we are steady we work with 3 mechanics in our area and who ever can fit us in on that particular day gets the business.

Mostafa2245 karma

I'm starting to personally buy and sell cars. Can you give me any advice in what to look for in a potential car to sell?

tiptopauto4 karma

I don't know where you're from, but if you are in Ontario you would be considered a Curbsider that could result in jail time and becareful for tax reasons.

Lastly I will buy ANY car on the money which means if you can buy it right, you can sell it.

But the generic answer would be honda/toyota

Tribbis5 karma

  1. What is the average commission a salesman gets on a sale? Such as %

  2. If something happens to someone's car past warranty (where it is not legally your problem), what do you do to help that person if anything?

tiptopauto9 karma

1) Our dealership has no comission, all flat with bonuses monthly/yearly so that there is NO pressure from my staff.

2) Just posted this
Of course! Its part of the game.... worst one ever was a ford diesel. bought everything was normal, sold it, 2 weeks later customer complains about white smoke....long story short 6gs later. We offered to give customers money back, he wanted the truck. Total deal ended up losing 4500$ But that customer has sent 3 customers into us, because the issue he had was not part of certification or anything, we could of said sorry not our problem it was ok when we sold. Rather we fixed it he was happy and in the grand scheme of things it was worth it.

cmack4824 karma

That sounds awesome. #2 is something so few dealerships understand (I used to work doing training for dealerships). They would much rather make $5000 off of one customer than make $1000 each off of 50 customers. So aggravating, everyone loses.

tiptopauto6 karma

Exactly man... Its easier to make 1$ off of a million people than $1,000,000 of one person.

I want to be here for the long haul.

sleepyguy225 karma

Does a car dealership have any operating expenses outside of the norm that other business wouldn't have? ("normal" overhead I can think of include wages, rent, insurance, utilities)

tiptopauto7 karma

Advertising is my biggest expense. We sponsor local soccer and hockey teams. We have a pool for issues that arise after sale out of our control

SomeKindOfMutant4 karma

What do you drive?

tiptopauto16 karma

Just picked up an Audi r8 for the spring but this is my first time buying a car for my self as a daily driver...right now I drove home a 2009 Civic.

I'll drive anything off the lot.

TheMitchofEffingham3 karma

Talk about an upgrade!

tiptopauto4 karma

the 2009 Civic was just something I took off the lot, today I drove home a 2006 Golf Diesel.

turbie4 karma

What's the best make and model as far as used cars go? I currently have a 97 Nissan Altima that has treated me well. What other cars can last almost 20 years?

tiptopauto6 karma

Most cars will last that long if you do regular maintenance on them.

I've seen cobalts with 500,000Kms NO joke and civics with 200,000kms that have blown engines due to improper maintenance.

I'd recommend getting a car YOU like not what someone else thinks is best for you.

jimanri4 karma

how do you estimate the value of a car? and what if the car is a "classic?

tiptopauto10 karma

My valuation is simple... look at autotrader and try to be the bottom 10 cheapest. I work on volume not trying to "hit a homerun" on every car.

Classic cars are different complete different ball game, I will call some of the guys that deal with those types of cars and compare to autotrader. Overall I've only ever 3 classic cars traded in. 1973 Mustang, 1969 Mustang (they were pretty easy to get a valuation because a lot out there) and a 1952 MGB kit car. (much harder just took a gamble)


Most dealers use NADA to value their vehicles. The other reliable sources are Black Book and Manheim Auction Values. If you want to have a bank finance a vehicle you have to have a book-out sheet which is like an invoice for a used vehicle. This comes from NADA, generally KBB is absolute shit when estimating the value of a vehicle and is not used in the business at all.

tiptopauto2 karma

Black book is not reliable for valuations either. Sometimes they are 2000$ too much or 1000 too light. Only problem is banks use that to value the loan amount. So you have to be close.

SimpleBen4 karma

What's your best "used car salesman" joke?

tiptopauto4 karma

I'm going to be super boring and honestly say I don't have any.

Wait I just thought one Only person that call sell Snow to an Eskimo is a used car salesman.

ArmoredLunchbox4 karma

Do you have a 1990 honda crx? Its my favorite car and I cant find it under 3k

tiptopauto5 karma

We don't but check Kijiji and craigslist.

yettopettoreddit3 karma

How long do you keep a car before you finally decide its time to send it to the junkyard.

Also are there " car sales " or offers where you sell a car at almost break even rate ?

tiptopauto2 karma

Junkyard for me is if the car is too beat up or needs mechanical repair beyond fixing.

If the car has some life, but I don't trust it for my own costumer I sell it to wholesalers who deal with that type of car.

Break even happens alot, If I get a package of cars some I might make 500 on and some 2500...I look at the whole package not per unit. Also if a car has been sitting for close to a year...I'll blow it out. Some have 90 days or 180 days every dealer is different.

Knineteen3 karma

Convince me...what's the benefit of buying from a dealer vs. private party? Private party can tell you a history of the vehicle and at a cheaper price. What makes dealers so special?

BTW, I have nothing against dealers...I bought my last car from one.

tiptopauto5 karma

Both have their Pro's and Con's

Dealer: (In Ontario) Has strict laws on what has to be disclosed, any accidents over 3gs, any 2 body panels replaced or repainted, any rental history, and frame damage etc... where private doesn't have to say anything!

Also curbsiders are private individuals who buy high km cars, or major accidents and roll back kms or fix them and sell them.

Private party can tell you anything unless they have receipts for any work done you'll never know.

FOR the most part no different...let the best price win and in our area dealers generally have better price

drewdrj3 karma

Is there a strategy one can use to help them get a better deal on a vehicle without being a jerk? I'm not really all that great at negotiating prices in this regard.

tiptopauto11 karma

Some used car dealers had NO haggle pricing, we are pretty close to that too. We put our best price forward and go with volume.

If you come in and offer us 1000 below asking we just say we can't do that and explain why. If the total after taxes is like $10142.23 and you say I had a budget of 10gs all in. We will most probably do it.

The most important thing is treat your salesperson nicely and don't think they are out to get you. It will help you in the long run.

placardpoo2 karma

what's your best selling car? how are gas prices in Ontario?

tiptopauto2 karma

Because I am in GM town, we sell a lot of GM trucks and cobalts I can never keep enough Pontiac Vibes on the lot.

Gas is $1.20/liter

bleen0_02 karma

How much capital was the initial investment for the dealership? Could you elaborate on its beginnings? Interested about entrepreneurship.

tiptopauto7 karma

50gs Got a loan from my dad.

I used to work as a car salesman, learned the GOOD and BAD and decided I would use that to build my own company. Also used school smart and street smarts (selling in the past) to grow the business.

retoupin2 karma

But you sell used cars. Why would we believe anything you say?

tiptopauto2 karma

I'm trying to break the mould....but do your own research :)

river491 karma

Is a 2012 Mazda 3i sport w/ 30k miles (former rental car) for $16700 out the door a good price? If not what else would you recommend for around that price?

tiptopauto2 karma

Where are you located? How much taxes? I might be able to help

river491 karma

Florida. Can't remember taxes exactly but base price is $15,490. They try very hard to avoid negotiating and there is no dealer fee/comission.

tiptopauto2 karma

I can't say for sure because I am not in FL, but check auto trader in your area it will give you a good indication on pricing.

bleen0_01 karma

I was wondering, what do you think of this? How accurate is it?


tiptopauto2 karma

I didn't listen to the podcast but Dodge is the biggest manufacturer that is paying bonus on volume and I think it's destroying their brand.

questionable-source1 karma

Ok so i have a question. So my brother bought a truck from a used car lot about two weeks ago. He got the truck inspected by our mechanic and told him that the main seal was leaking. He told the salesman that it was leaking and he should fix it. He wrote it in the contract and well the truck sat up there for a week. When he was called back that next week we got the truck and took it to the mechanic and asked him to check it out. He said that there was nothing done to the truck and it was still leaking trans fluid. Is there anything we can do to somehow get around this since as i said he voided the contract which it clearly states that anything that is written in must be done. oh and he brought it up when he called the sales man the other day and he said he did fix it its just that something else is messed up.

tiptopauto2 karma

If it's on the bill of sale, its pretty self explanatory.

You could definitely escalade this to the right governing body.

I_Are_Brown_Bear1 karma

I know I'm late to the party, but do you know anything about importing from Canada to the States? I really want ~'03 Echo Hatchback (yeah, I'm weird) from CA but I live in the US. Do you know anything about getting a car from CA to the US and any duties or taxes or modifications necessary?

tiptopauto2 karma

I'm sorry I could tell you about USA to Canada, but I do not know about Canada to USA.

impreprex1 karma

What do you think of the 1999 Acura TL 3.2? Thanks!

tiptopauto3 karma

I have seen some with tranny issues but other than that great cars. My friends dad has one with 532,000kms but on his 3rd tranny

pariah871 karma

What would it take to get me into a brand new 2001 Nissan Sentra today!?

tiptopauto2 karma

New 2001?

penispoop121 karma

Did my car actually have piranhas eating through my exhaust pipe or were the mechanics lying?

tiptopauto4 karma

Was you car ever submersed in murky swamp water?

cmack4821 karma

Do you have your salespeople and UCMs use a system like First Look or whatever the other one is called?

tiptopauto1 karma

No system,

Just a note pad if a customer leaves us with their number to find a specific car other than that we don't need your number because we don't hound them or call them every day and say come and buy from us.

terrapin12341 karma

I always get frustrated at used dealerships because the salespeople seem so non-empowered when it comes to the price, negotiations, and overall knowledge of the vehicles. It's almost a waste of time let alone awkward dealing with them (smalltalk etc). And it's usually the finance people who try to upsell the warranty, undercoating, 3M protection etc.

I mean, if I know what I'm looking for (exact make/model), I presumably know about the car and it's features. It would make more sense for me to come in and request a test drive. And then if I'm interested make an offer directly to the sales manager. Because let's face it, they are the ones who have the final say...and typically get involved in some way or another in all negotiations.

I realize this is not the way it works, but curious on your thoughts.

tiptopauto4 karma

Very true, Consumers are SMART, they have done their homework, know what a car costs (new) and really a computer could sell them a car at the lowest price. I wouldn't be surprised if we see this soon.

However don't discount the salesman, if he needs your sale for quota reasons he will truly fight for the best deal, if he's not hungry for a deal he can also blow you off.

oam_1 karma

I am looking for a used car. My budget is 8000$. Do you think I would be able to get 2008 - 2010 models with less than 100k miles from a dealership. If not what is the best one I could get on my budget.

tiptopauto2 karma

I totally think you can get a domestic brand for sure or even an Import if the right deal comes up (Civic, Accent, Sonata, Corolla)

BlackRobFord1 karma

Any recommendations for someone who later in life might get into owning his own dealership? Or owning your own business in general?

tiptopauto1 karma

Don't be scared if you truly believe in yourself. My first location was a small, shitty area of town that my wife didn't even think it would work...and we did well there for a 10 car lot.

My 2nd location was further east (from Toronto) and had 3 failed used car dealership in the last 3 years there, customer would come in and say "here we go again, you won't make here son"....I've been there for 4 years now and I am outgrowing it. We are looking for an even bigger lot.

It all comes down to believing in myself and my skills that I can change the industry enough to lead me to prosperity.

Also Networking is HUGE in any industry, my first day of university my teacher said to the class....It's not what you know it's who you know in 4 years from now.

doublegloved1 karma

How many customers per day would you say come onto your lot to look? How many sales do you make per day?

It's always confused me how in one small city there can be many dealerships all relatively close to one another and they all somehow stay in business.

tiptopauto1 karma

We probably have on average 5~7 people come in every day. We selling about 45ish a month.

I think the marker is very saturated but after the last couple years I have seen a fair number of places closing down. Inventory is harder to get so people who haven't networked can't find cars therefore can't survive.

Rkninja21 karma

How did you start and invest in your business? Did you go to college?

tiptopauto2 karma

I went to University and got my degree in B.Comm majoring in accounting.

Started with a 50g loan from my dad.

Mermaid_Splashes1 karma

My boyfriend also sells cars...mostly new cars but used ones too. December and so far January have been ridiculously slow not only for him but everyone at the dealership he works for - only one car out this month when he was averaging ten per month prior to this. I'm pretty worried about him. Is it normal to have such dry spells? And if so, how do you handle them?

tiptopauto4 karma

Very normal, Dec/Jan are typically the slowest months.

Where does he sell cars?

Mermaid_Splashes2 karma

At Ford, in Montana. I would blame the weather but we're having an unusually warm month.

tiptopauto3 karma


Also all incentive programs start in Feb which gives a kick start to car sales.

PrairieKid1 karma

No question, but I'll give you three grand for the Hummer.

tiptopauto3 karma

Sold that hummer 3 years ago.

I can't buy one that cheap anymore.

H1'S are cheapest when the states are in a recession.

PrairieKid1 karma

You mean Hummers sell for 3k? I mean, I get why, but that is cheap!

tiptopauto2 karma

No not that cheap. Sorry

emergent_properties1 karma

How much concern do you have with Tesla trying to sell cars directly to the consumer?

tiptopauto3 karma

Doesn't bother me at all, I'm happy they are doing well and turning a profit.

youtwo1 karma

how many cars do you sell a month? is your inventory financed or owned outright? how many cars on your lot? why tie up so much money in the R8?

tiptopauto2 karma

We do about 40~45 a month. Owned outright. We have about 60 retail pieces. Cause I've always wanted to own an R8. Lifes not all about money gotta enjoy some of your hard earned money sometimes.

gizzardgullet1 karma

What makes hold their value the best in the used markets?

tiptopauto6 karma

Honda/Toyota always seem to hold the best value.

thurgood_peppersntch2 karma

I can definitely say that is true. I recently bought an 08 Tacoma and just trying to find a used Tacoma was next to impossible. The ones that I did find, most were still 19k with 80,000 or an 06. They are well built vehicles that last a while. Luckily I was able to find mine for 17,000 with 52,000 miles on it. Had a few minor, at least to me, dings that weren't that noticeable so I jumped on it. I am really enjoying the truck

tiptopauto4 karma

Yeah Toyota trucks are crazy! I can't believe some of the prices they sell for.

TrailRatedRN2 karma

I think wranglers also hold their values well. I bought my Unlimited in '06 for $28g. Unfortunately, it was totaled last month. It was valued at just shy of $19g.

Edit: of course, their gas mileage is for shit. Lol

tiptopauto2 karma

You are right Jeep wranglers hold their value pretty well and are in demand in the used market too.

lindsayallene0 karma

My husband and I are in the market for a new vehicle. We are wanting to sell/trade in his car. It was his first car and it's not the prettiest thing out there but it's been very dependable. Considering we probably won't get much for it (it's a 95 Toyota Corolla never been in an accident, only major issue was with brakes, had to get boots and everything replaced about 5 years ago) what route should we take to try and get the most money from it? Trade it, sell it ourselves, or maybe scrap it. Any advice would be helpful. Thanks.

tiptopauto1 karma

Sell yourself!

Especially cheaper cars, because there is not a lot out there that is decent, so you should be able to get a pretty penny for it.

Huntard--1 karma

Can you hire me?

tiptopauto3 karma

We are not looking for help right now, sorry :(

dankdooker-3 karma

Do you eat eggs?

tiptopauto3 karma

I had scrambled eggs for lunch...how did you know?

Othan-5 karma

What are the perks of your job, besides wearing tacky clothes and being able to get away with it?

tiptopauto5 karma

Because we are laid back, my staff have to wear dress pants and a golf shirt with our logo on it. Nothing too tacky.

I love meeting people and earning their repeat business, plus I get to drive some fun cars.

hanyuqn1 karma

I work at an Audi dealership and it is mandatory for all male staff to wear a suit and tie - do you think this is necessary, or mayble only expected for prestige brands?

tiptopauto1 karma

I think expected for prestige brands...Nothing wrong with that though.

jarrettbraun-8 karma

So does that mean you're calling yourself a scumbag?

tiptopauto3 karma