Familiar with home consignment stores, where you can buy second-hand clothes, housewares, books and so much more? Ever think of buying a collectible car in this manner? Twenty years ago, some used car dealers took cars on consignment, even delegating a portion of their lot for these vehicles.
Since then most of the world has moved to trading online, many car owners have tried selling their vehicle themselves, but a slew of issues and/or obligations prevent them from doing so successfully.
Marketing takes the form of posting an ad on Auto Trader, Facebook or Craigslist, then arranging to meet the prospective buyer, negotiating the price, etc., and some just aren’t comfortable with the whole process.
While these methods are certainly successful for some, car consignment is a growing trend that now includes collectible vehicles: rare, hard-to-find, gotta-have-it, expensive cars. They’re being shipped worldwide to collectors and car enthusiasts willing to spend a little cash.
Since 2005, classic car consignment showrooms have opened up in Atlanta, Dallas/Ft. Worth, Nashville and Tampa.
“I’ve been in the classic car industry since 1999,” said Donna Robbins, president and CEO of Streetside Classics “Prior to Streetside Classics, I owned another classic car dealership, and prior to that I was in the corporate world with companies such as Frito Lay.”
In 2016, Streetside Classics’ locations sold 0ver 1,800 vehicles, earning $51 million. And the company typically showcases 1,200-plus vehicles total.
“Classic car consignment has been around quite a while, but it was mostly dominated by auction companies until the advent of the Internet in the late 1990s and early 2000s. For sure, the Internet and online marketing changed the game and have allowed business models like mine to take off. Without the Internet, our business model would either not exist or be on a much smaller scale,” Robbins says.
In Streetside Classics’ case, a seller provides details/history about the vehicle he or she wants to sell. Streetside will perform an evaluation of the vehicle based on today’s market conditions, then arrange to bring it in to its showroom. There, staff inspects the car to make sure all information provided is accurate.
At the end of the day, if both parties come to terms, a consignment agreement is signed. Photos, videos and a detailed description are created for marketing purposes with detailing packages available. Besides its own website, Streetside utilizes more than 40 collector car websites and publications to showcase the vehicle.
With a typical 15 percent inventory turnover monthly at Streetside’s Concord location, many of these vehicles are purchased by collectors, whether they buy and sell regularly or are looking for a permanent addition to their personal collection. The Concord showroom houses an average of 250 vehicles.
The safety and convenience of car consignment can work in the buyer’s favor as well. Vehicle financing may be offered, as well as an aftermarket warranty and shipping. Add to that, the thrill of owning the car of their dreams.
The above article was sourced from Cabarrus Magazine and it can be read in its entirety here.