For the last year or so, I've been daydreaming about selling used motorcycles. Originally, I thought I'd sell other people's bikes on eBay, for a commission. As I researched the opportunity, however, I discovered that while a "Sell it on eBay" store works great for antiques, collectibles, and other low-buck tchotchkes, it's not really viable for motorcycle sales.
- To sell more than 4 bikes a year in Arizona, one has to have a dealer's license and a $100,000 bond (so if I need that, why not just own the bikes as well?).
- By selling on commission, I'd have two clients to appease per sale, instead of just one if I outright owned the bike. If the seller isn't happy with how much the bike sold for, it'll be that much more unpleasant taking my (hefty) commission from them.
- With a dealer license, I can get into wholesale auctions and buy bikes on the cheap.
- When the seller still owns the bike, arranging shipping/pick-up/storage of the bike would be a huge pain.
- Arranging the title transfer would be a lot sketchier, since I'd just be a go-between between the seller and the buyer.
So it makes more sense to just buy the bikes outright and resell them. I still like the eBay sales model, however, because (once I have a bike to sell) I can just take the photos, write the ad and wait for the money to come rolling in. Meanwhile, I can keep my job until the business is really rolling.
My plan is to first get the VX800 running (because I need to get that sucker going again), and then start looking for bikes to buy and resell. I figure I'll sell one or two to get the hang of how the process works, and if it seems like a feasible business model, I'll go ahead and get established as a business.
Why am I telling you about this? Mostly to force myself to go through with it.