MSCC APRIL 12 FEATURE FIVE FOR FRIDAY: THE FIVE “W” (AND ONE “H”) QUESTIONS YOU NEED TO ASK ABOUT AN OLD CAR

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The basic tenets behind a news story are “Who, What, Where, When, Why and How?”

 

These questions can also be applied to the vintage vehicle hobby because they will arise after any car guy takes the plunge and begins a search for old ride.

 

The first question is “Who”: a term that can be applied to the person who wants to sell the vehicle to the buyer. “Who” is an important consideration because the buyer needs to establish whether the seller is a world class bondo magician, hall of fame car curber or an honest vendor.

 

 

The buyer should research whether the seller’s story truly reflects this critical “Who” part of the equation and is not simply a creative sociopath with a piece of junk for sale.

 

 

The second question is also pretty basic: “What” vehicle has caught the prospective buyer’s interest? The “What” question is a critical question because the more he or she knows about the vehicle, the more informed their decision about the possible purchase of same.

 

They need to know the year, make, model, and most importantly, “What” is the current condition of the vehicle. These conditions are major components of the purchase decision by savvy buyers.

 

 

The third question is pretty simple: “Where” is the vehicle? The location of the vehicle has to be factored into the purchase because of the logistics that may arise when distance is a factor. The car guy algebra in this scenario is. the longer the distance, the more complicated the potential purchase.

 

 

The distance factor means higher transportation costs to even view the vehicle in question-let alone haul it home. Therefore “Where” is a big question for car guys.

 

 

The fourth question is “When” for car guys. Is now the right time in their lives to purchase a vintage vehicle. Has the “When” question been answered for them and is now the right time for them to buy the old car or truck of their dreams. They will likely factor in a kid and mortgage-free personal status before car guys and girls tackle the “When” part of the equation in their life stories because old vehicles are lower priorities than kids and shelter for typical old car buyers.

 

 

The fifth question in the 5 Ws may be the most important one: “Why?”  The reasons behind a vintage vehicle investment are likely complicated by the buyer’s emotional state. The emotions range from sentimentality to greed, depending upon the purchaser.

 

 

The purchaser should step back a little before they buy an old car and ask themselves why they want to own a vehicle that will require an enormous investment of time, money and potential heartache shortly after they purchase it.

 

 

Why” car guys want to buy it may get obliterated by reality if the answer is weakened by emotion and missing Star Trek star Spock’s impeccable logic.  A “Why” question needs a well-grounded answer when it comes to the purchase of an old vehicle. Most car guys’ brides will step right past the other questions and zero in on this important question when the subject arises in a marital conversation.

 

 

The final question in this scenario is “How”. We at MyStarCollectorCar advise every car guy to give plenty of consideration to their answers because the most important people for the “How” question will be their bankers and their brides.

 

 

Both will be a tough crowd to please. 

 

BY: Jim Sutherland

 

Jim Sutherland is a veteran automotive writer whose work has been published by many major print and online publications. The list includes Calgary Herald, The Truth About Cars, Red Deer Advocate, RPM Magazine, Edmonton Journal, Montreal Gazette, Windsor Star, Vancouver Province, and Post Media Wheels Section. 

 

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