Where to find your next bike

Scott Redmond
By Scott Redmond
ScottRedmond4 Used bike expert, bike anorak, lifetime wheeler dealer and sometime bike breaker. Regularly rides off for a 'mooch'.
Modifications that are hot or not when it comes to buying or selling
It’s never been easier to buy your next used bike; the knack is knowing where to look. For years eager buyers would wait until Wednesday and rush down to the newsagent to grab a copy of MCN, for decades their classified section was the go to place to buy and sell motorcycles. The reality was, any genuine bargains were purchased on the Tuesday before by dealers who had friends who could supply an early paper. Then around the year 2000 eBay entered our lives. It revolutionised the way we bought and sold bikes overnight. Instead of paying for a handful of words and your phone number to appear in a paper ad, you could now write as much as you wanted and more importantly add photographs. After all, a picture paints a thousand words.
 

The eBay bubble is still pretty much solid but not every listing plays by their rules. Hidden between the trades adverts are the private listings which are were any potential bargains lurk. Most people tend to use their classified format. You upload your description and images and set your price. People have to deal with you directly which gives you much more control as the seller.
 
The auction format carries less guarantees. Unless you set a reserve price, you run the risk of your bike going for less than you want for it. Most auctions on eBay run over a week. Add another week for your buyer to sort his logistics out, borrow a van and take a trip to the bank and it’s quite a lengthy process. Then they could arrive and start haggling. You won’t be too shocked to discover that this does happen, or even worse they could just ignore your messages and never show up!

Buying motorbikes on Facebook

Thankfully there’s a much quicker way to flog your bike and even better it’s free! Facebook, it’s the go to place these days for everything from what your friends are having for dinner to videos of cats on skateboards. It’s also the home of many a buy and sell page. There’s no shortage of pages on Facebook where you can buy and sell motorcycles. One page that I follow is the The Bike Bay. All you have to do is follow the page and you have instant access to not only buying a bike but selling yours too. Keenly priced bikes will often sell within a few hours. Unlike an eBay auction where prices go up, back on Facebook the art of haggling is alive and prices can be negotiated downwards. There’s no shortage of other pages using this format. They range from pages where you can trade classics right through to customs and even unfinished projects.

 
Buying motorbikes off Facebook

The bike trade also use social media to promote their shops and they advertise their bikes direct to their profiles. It’s worth adding any shops that are local to you. Some even sell their trade ins on via their page.

The classified isn’t totally dead. Even in this age, there are people who don’t own or use a computer. Local newspapers and notice boards down the sweet shop still throw up the odd used bike gem.

 
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