Tag Archives: ebay

A Fool and His Money

I’m kind of lazy. Well, I’m really lazy sometimes. Ever since I graduated from high school I’ve had a hard time managing my time, so I don’t have a job while I’m in school. I hardly get my schoolwork done as it is, I can’t imagine trying to organize it alongside even part-time working hours. Needless to say, I have no source of income. My parents are more than kind enough that they cover my gas money and general living expenses, so my savings shouldn’t go anywhere, right? I also have a spending problem. I’m a little bit of a shopping addict, mostly as a response to stress or depression. What stress? Who knows. I’m in an almost perpetual state of wanting a vacation, sometimes even while I’m on vacation.

So why is any of this relevant? Because I should be saving money for this trip. I should’ve been saving money for at least a year now, but when I had a decent amount saved up and got some paid film work it seemed like I had money to spare. Wrong. So in late September, my savings almost completely depleted, I turned to the one place I could get help.

eBay.

Since then I’ve sold five CDs, nine DVDs, two Playstation 3 games, three Gamecube games, a computer program, and a Silver Surfer compilation book. This raked in $288.71, but after deducting shipping and fees from both eBay and PayPal, I got a net profit of a little more than $100.

It’s not much but every little bit helps, right? Especially since I’ve still been spending money needlessly. Having an eBay account is a double-edged sword, since while I’m making money by venting my unwanted and unneeded possessions, I’ve also been inducted into a new spending venue.

So I’ve got almost $250, and the trip is less than five months away. Am I boned? How much money will I need for three months anyway?

I’m boned, aren’t I.

BAM!

Bus!
I finally won a bus! It’s a 1990 International with 210k miles, DOT certified until March. And it looks beautiful. I’ll be heading out to pick it up (1200 miles away) either this weekend or the next. I’ll definitely keep this updated on any developments.

Frustration

Its understandable that sellers think highly of their buses, because of the original price they likely paid for them. But as soon as these buses get on in years, they lose value considerably. The average prices on these things is around $2000. Lately, the average reserve is higher.

I’ve seen dozens of buses on eBay end without sale. So many, any of which I would have gladly bought. Sellers are setting reserve prices higher than they will ever get. This is the main problem I’ve had buying buses so far. 7 auctions have ended in which I was the high bidder, but the reserve price wasn’t met. Its starting to bug me. I just wish sellers could start setting realistic reserve prices so auctions would end with a winner.

Foiled again

So…
There were 4 bus auctions ending today. I bid on one before I went to sleep, and though I was the high bidder, the price hadn’t yet passed the seller’s reserve. When I woke up shortly before the auction ended, I had been outbid by a couple hundred dollars, but the reserve still hadn’t been met. So that was a lost cause.

Next bus: I was outbid, and when the auction ended, the reserve was also not met. The third bus was higher than I wanted to bid, and it ended at about the same price as the second bus, with the reserve not met.

The fourth bus is the only one without a reserve price, but the current high bid is over $3k. So that’s out as well. Desperate, I went to the next bus on my watch list (this is the bus located in CT), which ends in a few days. I bid my max ($2150) and was immediately outbid by the previous high bidder.

So…crap. Turns out January is not a very good time for buying used school buses. Mid-December was incredible, but I wasn’t yet ready to buy, so I held off. Let that be a lesson to you, if you should ever have to buy a school bus, do it mid-December.

Looks like I’ll be waiting a while, and may not get a bus this break (I will get one this semester). Hopefully that’ll work out in the end.

Prospects

Well, I’m looking at a few buses on eBay, many of which end in a couple days. Also, somehow most of them are also located in Texas. I have no issue with going to Texas to pick up a bus, especially when they look as good as these do. Thanks to Texas weather, these buses have a lot less rust than buses in the Northeast. Here is an example of the buses I’m looking at (there are two more that are practically identical from the same dealer). There is a reserve price, and the high Buy It Now price makes me think that these might go above my budget, which is less than usual thanks to the cost of getting down there.

There is hope, I’m also looking at a bus for sale in CT, which I would love to get. Its a beautiful bus, but it is also a ’95, meaning it’ll probably also go out of my price range.

The quest continues, and even if I can’t get a bus before I go back next semester, I’m willing to wait until the perfect bus comes along. That isn’t a big issue, since I wasn’t going to be able to work on it much while at school. My only concern is that prices may go up once spring/summer come around…