PDA

View Full Version : Moral Delimna...



johnaec
11-05-2004, 07:58 AM
Well, guys - I'm kinda torn here and could use some advice.

I answered an online ad from someone selling a set of large JBL's for $100 because they wanted something smaller. I emailed for more info, and was blown away when 4315 was the reply!! I emailed back that I'd take them, but didn't hear any more until late last night, ('figured she'd found what she could get...), when the lady called me. When I said I could come right down, (30 minutes away), she said they're mine!

So I drive down to find a *mint* pair of 4315's. She and her husband just purchased some big new furniture and wanted something smaller for speakers, but the lady was still kinda' torn about selling them. She asked if I thought she should have asked more, (she'd already had a bunch of emails), and I told her they were at least 20 years old, but she could probably have asked more. Her husband then mentioned he had them updated about 7 years ago, (yes, the foam is excellent). She also said her sons in southern CA would be upset, but that's how it goes.

So here's my dilemna. I don't want her to feel really bad if it really makes her sons very upset with her, and I also don't want her to feel too bad for selling them so low after she's innundated with emails. They're obviously very well off, and I can't afford more than $100 right now for anything anyway, (I just happened to have a $100 Christmas gift bill in my dresser from last year).

They're still in my car, ('need help unloading them) - should I tell her she could have easily got several times what I paid, and offer to return them for a "service" charge, so that she won't be bummed by her sons and can get what they're really worth? Or should I just be happy - if they were going to go for $100 anyway, why shouldn't it be me?

Seriously, guys - this is really bothering me - what would you do? :confused:

John

Don C
11-05-2004, 08:05 AM
I can tell that the guilt of getting too good of a deal is eating you up. Your best solution is to sell them to me at your cost, thereby transferring all of the guilt to me. I have had to deal with that guilt a few times before, and I am getting to be pretty good at dealing with it.

DavidF
11-05-2004, 08:18 AM
John, I appreciate your dilemma but the way it works is that you usually bid down in price, not up. You met the seller’s price, after all. Don’s offer to alleviate your pain, though in jest, mostly, points our where you might cross the line- if you immediately turn them around for $1,000. That is still “good business” but where in my mind the fog of morality sets in.

David F

Don McRitchie
11-05-2004, 08:19 AM
Don C

Seldom have I been struck by the degree of pure humanity and spirit of altuism as evidenced in your post :D

To Johnaec - this is one that you're going to have to resolve for yourself. Legally and ethically you have done nothing wrong. Personally, I would have given more, but you are under no obligation to do so.

boputnam
11-05-2004, 08:24 AM
John, dood...

How do you know she even owned the house? Didn't you read the report of a house-sitter that replaced all the funiture and recarpeted the home while the owner was away - and then refused to move out!!?? Dood, those 4315's are clearly not hers. This lady has done this before.


Her husband then mentioned he had them updated about 7 years ago He must know he spent more than $100 just refurbishing them.

If these were L100's I would understand your plight. :rotfl:

You "hit the bid" (she set the price) - if you had made the offer, I might have question, but not since she asked the $100. Now, go get them outa the car...

4313B
11-05-2004, 08:57 AM
She's a bad, bad mom for not consulting with her sons beforehand. That's simply not your problem unless you want to make it your problem.

The burden of a sale price was on her. She named her figure and you generously met her figure without any haggling. If you feel that bad about it send her another hundred bucks when you have it to send. Hell, I'll send you $25 right now to put towards your "4315 Guilt" fund. PM me with your address.

Of course you're going to have to take measurements of the boxes and stuff so we can document all that in the tech section. You might as well post some photos too. That can be part of your healing process.

boputnam
11-05-2004, 09:01 AM
Originally posted by Giskard
Of course you're going to have to take measurements of the boxes and stuff so we can document all that in the tech section. You might as well post some photos too. That can be part of your healing process. :thmbsup: :rotfl:

Robh3606
11-05-2004, 09:19 AM
You paid a price that she set and they are in the back of your car??? She accepted your payment as payment in full but did not asking her son's or research what their fair market value was?? Sounds like she made a couple of mistakes. Wonder if a BOSE Lifestyle are the replacements:D . You didn't do anything wrong. If you got them off E-Bay for $100 BIN would you feel the same way??? I have grabed stuff for well under what it is worth with BIN. Get them out of your car before somebody else does! What's your address any way????

Rob:)

Zilch
11-05-2004, 10:18 AM
Hook them up.

Decide there's something wrong with them that, alas, you'll just have to live with for now....

johnaec
11-05-2004, 10:22 AM
Thanks for all the insights, guys. :) I feel quite a bit better now, (as long as she doesn't call back with some kind of sob story...). I'll get some pics posted once I get them inside, hopefully this evening.

John

jbl
11-05-2004, 10:23 AM
The fact that you had to wait for a reply would indicate that they discussed the situation. That was the agreed on price. If they wanted more, they should have asked or consulted with their son. They needed to move the speakers out, and they did. A good deal for both sides. Consider it a great deal for yourself and enjoy your speakers.

Ron

scott fitlin
11-05-2004, 10:28 AM
Originally posted by johnaec
Thanks for all the insights, guys. :) I feel quite a bit better now, (as long as she doesn't call back with some kind of sob story...). I'll get some pics posted once I get them inside, hopefully this evening.

John I hear you, but also, she sold them, you bought them, and you paid the asking price! Their yours to enjoy, and enjoy the fact that you got them for a very reasonable price!

:D

Earl K
11-05-2004, 12:44 PM
John

Ask the people who raised you for some advice on this one . In the end, you'll end up being a lot more comfortable with whatever it is you finally do .

<>Earl K

Alex Lancaster
11-05-2004, 01:12 PM
As long as You did not buy them from a street lady, complete with stolen shopping cart, because then You´d have the moral dilemma of buying stolen merchandise from somebody that would use the money for alky or drugs.

Simple :D :D

johnaec
11-05-2004, 02:10 PM
OK - this is now my thinking.

If I sold something for pennies on the dollar that my brother really valued, only to find out it put me really in a bad way with my family, I would call the purchaser to see if I could buy it back, even if I had to pay a reasonable amount more for it. The purchaser would have every right of refusal - I was the one that screwed up by selling it. If he wanted to sell it back, then fine - problem resolved.

But if I sold something for under value simply because I didn't do any research, I personally wouldn't try to get it back - 'lesson learned. And I certainly wouldn't expect the lucky purchaser to just offer to return it.

So if the lady does call me back because her sons are really upset and it's affected their relationship, I may listen to what she has to say. But if I don't hear from her, or she calls and says she should have sold them for more, I'm inclined to say, " A deal's a deal - you should have done your research...".

'This seem OK? I just want to enjoy these things...

John

lfh
11-05-2004, 02:52 PM
Originally posted by johnaec
So if the lady does call me back because her sons are really upset and it's affected their relationship, I may listen to what she has to say. But if I don't hear from her, or she calls and says she should have sold them for more, I'm inclined to say, " A deal's a deal - you should have done your research...".

I think you've arrived at a very reasonable strategy! Now :band:

Infredible
11-05-2004, 03:45 PM
John,
hook them up, seat down, crank up the volume and I'm sure few minutes after you will be healed. :yes:

Fred.

boputnam
11-05-2004, 04:00 PM
Originally posted by johnaec
OK - this is now my thinking. Dood...

You are overthinking this. You didn't bag her, you met her price. Done. This happens all-the-time. That's why we scour yard sales and why you check out Craig List anyway!! You did her a huge favour - the BIG BAD speakers are gone, her living room looks wonderful and she has some microBOSE on the way. She didn't have to deal with eBay, nor crate them up for shipment. Hell, if I keep going she will owe YOU money... :rotfl:

Sellers remorse does not apply - there was no agreement nor contract to that affect. She's probably supporting her kids off in college anyway, so they can't gripe either.

I'm with Giskard, we'll chip-in $25 each for a bottle of red wine. Now get to the listening - DUTY BECKONS!!

johnaec
11-05-2004, 04:05 PM
Originally posted by boputnam
Hell, if I keep going she will owe YOU money... :rotfl:Thanks Bo - that got me laughing! Now, I just gotta' get these things outta' my car. Pics later...

John

speakerdave
11-07-2004, 02:38 PM
John,

Enjoy the speakers.

I discussed this kind of question with a friend of mine many years ago when I was buying classic speakers and tube electronics every week end at garage sales and flea markets. He said at one point, "A lot of people are interested in other things besides what this stuff is currently worth." Most of the conclusions we came to have already been mentioned, but I believe there is one more, very important one. The knowledge you have of the speakers' value was acquired at the cost of considerabe expenditure of time and money. While you were doing that the people you bought the speakers from were doing something else, of their own choosing, maybe making a lot of money at it. You met in a market you both entered freely. You paid the price they asked.

I believe, also, from the description of the situation and process, that before they sold them to you they realized their mistake and decided to go ahead and back up what they said they would do.

It was unfair to you and inappropriate for her to try to convert you from a purchaser to a consultant.

Enjoy the speakers.

David

johnaec
11-07-2004, 06:45 PM
Thanks, Dave. It looks like they, (the speakers), have moved in for good. :cool: John

speakerdave
11-07-2004, 06:51 PM
That's the ticket!

Steve Schell
11-08-2004, 09:23 AM
Speakerdave, that is the best explanation I've seen of this type of situation... thanks. It has always seemed logical to me that it is not the obligation of a buyer to educate the seller of the value of their goods, but I might still have felt queasy on occasion.

We audio types tend to focus tightly on this old equipment, what it is worth, etc. In the case of a widow, she may just want it to be gone, and will be completely satisfied when this happens. Who knows- she may have hated the darn things for decades.

speakerdave
11-08-2004, 09:45 PM
Speakerdave, that is the best explanation I've seen of this type of situation... thanks. It has always seemed logical to me that it is not the obligation of a buyer to educate the seller of the value of their goods, but I might still have felt queasy on occasion.

We audio types tend to focus tightly on this old equipment, what it is worth, etc. In the case of a widow, she may just want it to be gone, and will be completely satisfied when this happens. Who knows- she may have hated the darn things for decades.
I appreciate the kind words, but I really think my analysis is specific to John's experience and others very similar to it in its essential details. It is not a formula I would feel comfortable applying to all scenarios. I admit that I can be a complete sap and when the humanity of the situation seems to suggest it, give up my strategic advantage and act differently from what I have described. It is always better to follow the impulse of the heart to generosity even if there are acceptable ways to rationalize around it. However, I like to remain aware that there are people out there who are astute enough to exploit this quality in others. I don't like being wrung out by them.

David

Mr. Widget
11-08-2004, 10:38 PM
David,

I agree with the spirit of this post completely. Thank you!

I am also happy for John's "luck". If I were in his shoes though, I think I would surprise the seller with an additional $100 when I could swing it.

Widget

johnaec
11-09-2004, 05:37 AM
I think I would surprise the seller with an additional $100 when I could swing it.Yeah, I've thought about that. Things are real on the edge right now, (new home, property taxes due, etc..), so it may have to wait a month or two, but I feel good about that...

And thanks again, everyone - your opinions have been highly valued.

John