What's fair? (pre-buy inspection/annual/travel)

EdFred

Taxi to Parking
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The first time I bought, I flew to the plane, I paid for a not-that-extensive pre-buy. AD/Logbook check, check for metal, compresssions, and that was about it. The second time I bought, I flew to see it, it just came out of an extensive annual. I saw the laundry list of items. When I sold the first plane, it had just finished annual and the buyer was fine with that, and actually bought it sight unseen because he had a buddy of his eyeball it and say, yep, looks good. I delivered the plane on my dime, he bought my one way ticket back.

I have a buyer lined up (thanks to PoA word of mouth and if it goes through a bottle of scotch to be given as commission) and the annual is due at the end of the month. Since my shop is booked solid, the plan is to have me fly it to their location (6 hr flight one way) for the initial once over, give them a checkout, and leave the plane at the shop where they are going to be taking it it in the future should they decide to move forward after the initial once over.

So - input from both sides is appreciated as to what's fair for both parties for:

Travel costs to bring the plane to them and getting me home if
- the sale goes through
- the sale does not go through

Inspection costs: What is to be paid by each party if
- the sale goes through
- the sale does not go through

I have ideas on what should be covered by the buyer and the seller, but wanted input from others who have gone through it.
 
I have ideas on what should be covered by the buyer and the seller, but wanted input from others who have gone through it.

As a buyer, I'd pay the inspection fee. As for travel expenses, if the plane is "as represented" in the log books and advertising (IE, I'd buy the plane), I'd be happy to pay reasonable travel expenses.

If the plane was misrepresented, pound sand on the travel expenses.

We looked at three birds, first two had non-disclosed damage. (Not in logs, planes advertised as NDH) Neither guy would budge on his NDH priced bird, so we told those guys to pound sand on expenses. One guy emailed us backing saying he'd take us to court. We told him to bring it on, we never heard from him again.
 
If I really wanted to sell the plane, I would gladly cover all the delivery and travel expenses.

That is just the "cost of doing business".

Yeah, you might get burned, but, if the plane is as advertised, likely lessen the chances of the buyer rejecting. To lessen that risk, I would have sent 200 pictures of the plane and the logbooks to accurately represent the condition and history.

I delivered a boat 300 miles last fall to let a guy run it, have his mechanic check it, al under the hopes he would live up to our verbal agreement and buy it. He loved it, boat was as described in the 40 pictures I sent, he recovered a few seats..... And then forgot to pay. I called asking him, nicely, and he quickly sent the check.

I just traveled 4 hours to look at a plane, had no intention of asking the Seller to cover my expenses for doing business of buying a plane.
 
Rather than a six hour flight and possibly leaving the plane with the prospective buyer, wouldn't it be better for them to come to GRR and have an independent shop lined up for the pre-buy? The buyer's shop may well pick it to pieces. An independent third party has no dog in the fight and would surely give an unbiased opinion.
 
If the sale goes through,I'd pay the delivery cost. If the sale doesn't go through. I would expect to be given ,travel costs ,dinner,and one night hotel from the buyer. Would be discussed with the buyer before delivery.
 
The first time I bought, I flew to the plane, I paid for a not-that-extensive pre-buy. AD/Logbook check, check for metal, compresssions, and that was about it. The second time I bought, I flew to see it, it just came out of an extensive annual. I saw the laundry list of items. When I sold the first plane, it had just finished annual and the buyer was fine with that, and actually bought it sight unseen because he had a buddy of his eyeball it and say, yep, looks good. I delivered the plane on my dime, he bought my one way ticket back.

I have a buyer lined up (thanks to PoA word of mouth and if it goes through a bottle of scotch to be given as commission) and the annual is due at the end of the month. Since my shop is booked solid, the plan is to have me fly it to their location (6 hr flight one way) for the initial once over, give them a checkout, and leave the plane at the shop where they are going to be taking it it in the future should they decide to move forward after the initial once over.

So - input from both sides is appreciated as to what's fair for both parties for:

Travel costs to bring the plane to them and getting me home if
- the sale goes through
- the sale does not go through

Inspection costs: What is to be paid by each party if
- the sale goes through
- the sale does not go through

I have ideas on what should be covered by the buyer and the seller, but wanted input from others who have gone through it.

Is the plan that they buy it after the initial once over, so that you're checking them out in their brand new airplane? If not, I'd be uncomfortable with the deal.

Can the buyer fly his mechanic up to your airport to perform the inspection? I'm in the camp with others that a rejection by the buyer leaves you 6 hours from home with your plane in pieces at an unknown to you shop.
 
The first time I bought, I flew to the plane, I paid for a not-that-extensive pre-buy. AD/Logbook check, check for metal, compresssions, and that was about it. The second time I bought, I flew to see it, it just came out of an extensive annual. I saw the laundry list of items. When I sold the first plane, it had just finished annual and the buyer was fine with that, and actually bought it sight unseen because he had a buddy of his eyeball it and say, yep, looks good. I delivered the plane on my dime, he bought my one way ticket back.

I have a buyer lined up (thanks to PoA word of mouth and if it goes through a bottle of scotch to be given as commission) and the annual is due at the end of the month. Since my shop is booked solid, the plan is to have me fly it to their location (6 hr flight one way) for the initial once over, give them a checkout, and leave the plane at the shop where they are going to be taking it it in the future should they decide to move forward after the initial once over.

So - input from both sides is appreciated as to what's fair for both parties for:

Travel costs to bring the plane to them and getting me home if
- the sale goes through
- the sale does not go through

Inspection costs: What is to be paid by each party if
- the sale goes through
- the sale does not go through

I have ideas on what should be covered by the buyer and the seller, but wanted input from others who have gone through it.

Congrats on getting a sale lined up. Most everything you have mentioned is negotiable. Personally, I would want some earnest money or some other clear idea that the buyer was not just pulling my chain before I would fly 6 hours. I would probably be asking for a deposit for the gas costs of flying there and back, half of which I would credit toward the sale.

I assume that the check out is after they have committed to buy? I wouldn't be getting myself in the position of giving them free dual instruction and my expense, just to walk away.

I would also not be wild about having my plane in pieces 6 hours away and have the deal go south. That is especially true if that shop is not an recognized Comanche shop as who knows what they are going to come up with. Now if it is a shop that you are comfortable having do the annual anyway, then I guess these things can be negotiable. Normally, I would expect the buyer to pay for the inspection, including putting it back together if they don't buy it. Do they want to do the annual as a pre-purchase inspection? I am not terribly in favor of those as they are both under and over inclusive to the things important in making a purchasing decision. But if the deal is good enough . . . maybe.

If there is going to be a shared responsibility for the annual, then I can see the seller being responsible for the annual flat rate fee and for the minimally necessary airworthiness items. You might agree to a neutral arbitrator if there is a disagreement as to what is necessary for airworthiness. That can be easy in this day and age. Find an agreeable, Comanche savvy IA and pay their rate to review the item(s) is dispute, look at the pictures, and decide whether it has to be done for airworthiness. On a Comanche, I could help you with that. You would need to get buy-in from the IA doing the inspection on that, so much depends on your view of that IA. There is the risk that he/she will look at you as a "stuck" customer and require you to fix an outrageous number of items because you have few options. That is why I would tend to just discount the price for taking it with a nearly expired annual and then let the buyer sort it out.

FWIW, when I bought my Twin Comanche, my IA wasn't current and the seller was advertising with a fresh annual. I just negotiated a lower price and took it as-is because I didn't want to get in a situation where we were fighting about who would be responsible for what, and I knew that there were things that I wanted done that went beyond a normal annual.
 
Ed, good luck with the sale.

My only input is to let you know that if the sale is near me (like within an hour or two), then I'll fly you home! Common purpose? I need an IFR cert.

My plane goes in for annual on 3/28 though....

I doubt that the buyer is near here though considering you said it's a 6 hour flight....
 
So - input from both sides is appreciated as to what's fair for both parties for:

Travel costs to bring the plane to them and getting me home if
- the sale goes through
- the sale does not go through
Unless you agreed that the price is "delivered" rather than "as is, where is" (the usual case in aircraft sales), I'd say delivery costs are entirely the buyer's responsibility, including the return expense for the ferry pilot involved. This is especially so in the case where you have (I gather) agreed to provide an otherwise free checkout in the aircraft -- a value of at least a couple of hundred dollars, I should think.

Inspection costs: What is to be paid by each party if
- the sale goes through
- the sale does not go through
Same deal. Every aircraft sales contract I've ever seen makes the buyer responsible for the inspection cost regardless of whether the sale goes through or not.
 
My only input is to let you know that if the sale is near me (like within an hour or two), then I'll fly you home! Common purpose? I need an IFR cert.
You don't need "common purpose" to give someone a free ride unless you're otherwise doing business with them.
 
I'm in Philly and the Bonanza I wanted was in Utah. I hired a mechanic from Texas to go look at it for me. He gave it the thumbs up so I bought it. The seller flew the plane back east at his expense. I paid for his airline flight back to Utah. That seemed reasonably fair to me. If the plane was misrepresented, I would have been out of pocket for my mechanic's expenses and wages. To guard against that, my mechanic spoke to the seller's mechanic at length before I agreed to have him look at the plane. That's no guarantee of course but it helps.
 
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