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Old 07-17-2012, 11:48 AM
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What is a fair offer for a new-2-me YJ?

I'm looking to buy a YJ in the next few weeks and have a hard cap of $3000 to spend. I know my stuff when we're talking about general automotive, but the Jeep community is a unique animal. Given that I live in Arizona, I'm not sure if the offer I make on a YJ would be considered "lowball" or if it would be a fair offer. Let's say, for example, the link below...I look at the age, the fact that is has a rebuilt engine, no A/C, no sort of a full top (soft or hard), and has an oil leak. My though is that $3000 wouldn't be an unfair lowball offer on this one. Am I wrong?

1989 Jeep Wrangler

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Old 07-17-2012, 11:56 AM   #2
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I'm in a similar boat as you. and if I were you, I would say bide my time.
$3800 is a large ask for a an 89 that is not in immaculate condition. I have a budget of $3200 and it has taken two weeks but I'm finally buying a '90 today for $3200, and I had the buyer come down from $4000
it really depends on if you feel like the jeep is right for you, and if the seller wants the car or not. The guy I'm buying from is selling it for his dad just for a little extra money, but told me some of the offers he had were such lowballs, he would rather cut out the entire back, put a huge *** cooler in the back, and take it offroading with his dad and beat the crap out of it offroading.
explain your situation. tell them that $3000 is all you have to your name right now in terms of buying a car, and see how it goes.
but, I personally would be looking for something a little better for $3000

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Old 07-17-2012, 12:08 PM   #3
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in Pa. he could get around 4-5000 for that yj the way it sits. i paid 3500 for an 87 almost 7 yrs ago, and it was a rust bucket.
since i have replace both floor pans, 3 crossmembers, and 4 parts of the frame. as well as doing a dana 35 to ford 8.8 rear swap, and upgrading the trans to an AX15.

IMO he will get 3800 for that yj. offer him 3k..the worst he can say is no.
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Old 07-17-2012, 12:36 PM   #4
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We have about the same pricing around here... about 4k for that jeep. But Im with Jeeplife; if that is what you are looking for, offer the 3k. But it definitely needs a lot of work.

Ive got about 3k in mine, including initial purchase, the trans upgrades/hard top, and it looks similar to that one. Except mine is primer on the front and I have flares all around.
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Old 07-17-2012, 12:50 PM   #5
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Bottom line is...it's worth whatever someone is willing to pay!
There are certain areas where the demand is higher and people are willing to pay to get one. I picked mine up a little over two years ago for $2K. It was in great shape and a steal. The guy needed the cash!

I was patient and took my time. Personally I wanted a 6 cylinder that was fuel injected, preferably 5 speed. Took about 3 months of looking but it paid off.
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Old 07-17-2012, 02:01 PM   #6
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It does have AC and $3800 isn't that bad of a price for a rust free YJ. Make a offer, the worst that can happen is he says no!
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Old 07-17-2012, 02:12 PM   #7
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I would wait. I did for a few months and one went for sale two miles from my house for 1200 bucks with a rebuilt engine at 40k. Picked it up for 1000. Guy needed rent money. I second that about PA, here he'd get 3800.
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Old 07-18-2012, 11:35 AM   #8
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Rust is an issue where I live, so that jeep would probably pull $3800. If you like it, offer him $3000, you might get lucky. Also, google "negotiation tactics". Negotiating a private seller is way easier than a dealer.
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Old 07-18-2012, 12:36 PM   #9
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like the other poster said tell him 3 k is all you have, be respectful, don't try to pick the jeep apart nobody wants to hear what they are selling is a piece of junk. he did say asking so he should be expecting offers.
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Old 07-18-2012, 12:39 PM   #10
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If it was mine I would ask 5500 here, hell I have 12K in mine and it doesnt run yet LOL
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Old 07-18-2012, 07:14 PM   #11
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If it was mine I would ask 5500 here, hell I have 12K in mine and it doesnt run yet LOL
Ive only got 3k...
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Old 07-18-2012, 09:09 PM   #12
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I'm just saying man. The guy was asking 4k obo for mine. Payed 3200 for it yesterday, he was happy to take it because it had only b
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Old 07-18-2012, 09:09 PM   #13
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*** only been up for 2 days and was happy it was going to someone who would take care of it.
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:40 AM
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Thanks for the input everyone. I'm finally going to hopefully look at this one as well as a few others this weekend. This blue one looks good but there are others online for the same asking price and a few years newer so we shall see.

It's funny....some people with 1970's jeeps are asking more than some folks with early 1990's jeeps. Talk about a wide price range!
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Old 08-03-2012, 10:42 PM   #15
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"you don't pick the jeep, the jeep picks you" its corny but true. you should feel like you want it, so if the price is right and you feel it. get it
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:03 PM
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There is one main thing that's frustrating me about this process. It seems like the prices are ALL over the place. There doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to why sellers are asking what they are. Book value is worthless apparently. How do I know what a fair offer even is on any of the ones I see online?
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:10 PM   #17
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make sure you check the floor boards and the frame rails for rust. if those two things show rust i would offer him 2800 for the blue one..... just my oppinion
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:14 PM   #18
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There is one main thing that's frustrating me about this process. It seems like the prices are ALL over the place. There doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to why sellers are asking what they are. Book value is worthless apparently. How do I know what a fair offer even is on any of the ones I see online?
You need to know their weaknesses, and their strengths, as well as what if any each mod is worth to you.

My example... I bought an '87 Wrangler, for $2000, no top, $1000 new tires and nice rims, 4" lift and steel doors.

Ran great, but had no reverse; the previous owner blew it out.

In my head, replace transmission = about $500, Top=about $500, and it is nearly a $4000 Jeep Locally.

Dumbass that I am, I didnt listen to the rest of these knowledgeable Jeepers and rebuilt the old BA10 Peugoet trans, and got an old aftermarket hard top for $200. So Im now $3500 into this thing then my daughter blows out reverse again within a month; so bad that the case is destroyed too. I found an AX15 out of a Cherokee with TC for $250 and installed it, and very happy with the results... so now $3800 plus misc oils and parts.

Then, the rear starts making noise, so I find a set of 4.10's out of a 4cyl, front and rear for $200, and with brakes, oil, and a new ujoint, just over $300. So $4100ish so far for a jeep that I can easily sell for $3500, but hard pressed to get $4000.

Needless to say, if you can verify the mods, and place a value to them that you are willing to pay, then the price will reflect that. But you also have to know what their weeknesses are in what you want that Jeep to do. A daily driver will have different requirements than a weekend warrior, and even at that, like mine, even as a DD you may need to know what to expect. I had too tall of tires (33") for the gear ratio of 3.07.

This is all work I did myself; it costs dramatically more to have someone else do it.
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:15 PM   #19
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that first jeep you posted is 2200-2500 around where i live......(central bama)...mine is a 93 Renegade all original, everything works and i only paid 3000 for it......and that's with hard top and full steel doors, I6 auto w/a.c......
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:22 PM   #20
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that first jeep you posted is 2200-2500 around where i live......(central bama)...mine is a 93 Renegade all original, everything works and i only paid 3000 for it......and that's with hard top and full steel doors, I6 auto w/a.c......
There is the thing right there; it all depends on your local market. Here CJ's and Wranglers are amazingly popular, $4000 for a nice jeep all day long. Less for something that needs work, and sometimes a lot of work. Most of the time the typical "junk" is listed here for $2000 or more.

I just looked at another listed as a "parts" car, for a '79 CJ they want $1200; I bet its gone as I type this.
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:32 PM   #21
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There is the thing right there; it all depends on your local market. Here CJ's and Wranglers are amazingly popular, $4000 for a nice jeep all day long. Less for something that needs work, and sometimes a lot of work. Most of the time the typical "junk" is listed here for $2000 or more.

I just looked at another listed as a "parts" car, for a '79 CJ they want $1200; I bet its gone as I type this.
True dat!.....jeeps are one of the most popular 4wd vehicles around here..in a town of 12,000 there's at least 4 dozen wranglers....but the prices aren't that high....a friend just bought a 97 in perfect condition with less that 60000 miles for 4800.00....I6, hard top, steel doors, with bikini top and soft top thrown in....
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:42 PM   #22
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If that is a life long AZ jeep there should be no rust issues, and it is airconditioned. 3800 is a very good price for a rebuilt motor and new carb. That jeep would go for 5k here in San Diego.
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:48 PM   #23
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If that is a life long AZ jeep there should be no rust issues, and it is airconditioned. 3800 is a very good price for a rebuilt motor and new carb. That jeep would go for 5k here in San Diego.
A leaky rear main at 4X,000 miles makes me wonder personally...I take someones word about that kind of thing with a grain of salt unless they can provide the paperwork. Then even at that I would have to wonder.
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Old 08-03-2012, 11:51 PM   #24
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good point trust but verify
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Old 08-04-2012, 12:03 AM
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That one is sold already so I'm on to other options. Sounds like I need to travel to 'Bama to get a good deal on a Jeep!!!!!
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Old 08-04-2012, 12:11 AM   #26
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Be patient, the right one will come; keep your feelers out there.
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Old 08-04-2012, 12:32 AM   #27
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The whole non-fuel injected thing pre 91 really is a bitch as far as I'm concerned with price.

As has already been mentioned it just depends on what someone is willing to pay for the thing. A west coast-born Jeep will (from what it looks like anyway) fetch more all day because you can avoid the rust bs.

There are morons out here in NorCal selling their 1985 salvaged wrangler with 180k miles for $10,000 on Craigslist. Some sit for weeks untouched and some sell.

Look, and look, and look again. You'll find what you want.
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Old 08-04-2012, 09:18 AM   #28
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i think to sum it all up here for you, is dont jump into anything just because you want a jeep. the market for wranglers or any jeep varies within your local area. I live in the boonies of sw ohio and any 4x4 here goes for more and the jeeps will go for alot more. try searching for things not only in your local area but in the areas surrounding. you may have to drive to get it but your not buying joe money's jeep down the street that he built ya know? give it time. find out what all you are looking for in the jeep then go and find it. I'm a pure believer in buying stock jeeps and building it yourself so that you arent driving someone elses jeep your buying a jeep you got your hands dirty building yourself and it gives you pride when people tell you they like it knowing you did it by yourself. just my oppinion. good luck with finding something you like.
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Old 08-04-2012, 09:54 AM   #29
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i think to sum it all up here for you, is dont jump into anything just because you want a jeep. the market for wranglers or any jeep varies within your local area. I live in the boonies of sw ohio and any 4x4 here goes for more and the jeeps will go for alot more. try searching for things not only in your local area but in the areas surrounding. you may have to drive to get it but your not buying joe money's jeep down the street that he built ya know? give it time. find out what all you are looking for in the jeep then go and find it. I'm a pure believer in buying stock jeeps and building it yourself so that you arent driving someone elses jeep your buying a jeep you got your hands dirty building yourself and it gives you pride when people tell you they like it knowing you did it by yourself. just my oppinion. good luck with finding something you like.
Exactly, you need to know what you want, and what you are willing to deal with.

For example, I dont like body lifts, that would be a minus for me, but a small spring lift is great. I also dont like longer shackles as a lift; things like that just scream "cheap" and "not done right". I will pay more for the one that is done right versus the one that I have to spend money fixing first.
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Old 08-04-2012, 07:28 PM
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That all makes sense. I'd rather do work on my own also, mainly because I don't trust other people to have done it correctly. I looked at 5 different YJs today, two of which were 6 cylinders. I have never driven a Wrangler before, and based on my reading here I had went in with the thought that a 4cyl would be worthless. I was rather surprised, even on one that was rolling 33's. It wasn't as bad as I thought. And since I don't plan on doing any highway driving, I don't think I need the 6cyl after all.

My wife and I are stumped on deciding between these 3 though. I didn't talk dollars and cents with anyone yet.

1978 jeep CJ 5
We ranked this one the lowest, mainly because of age and their asking price. Seems a bit pricey for a 30+ year old CJ.

JEEP WRANGLER SALE/ TRADE
This one is VERY nice, in great shape, and the guy is willing to deal. I'm thinking he intentionally boosted his asking price. Only downside is that it's salvage titled.

91 jeep wrangler $4,400 OBO
I liked this one also, and it was in pretty good shape. Only downside is that he says the clutch master cylinder needs replacing soon. Shifted fine for me when I drove it.


I think we're narrowed down to the 4cyl ones. Just have to determine whether we want newer/better condition but salvage title or older/good condition and clean title but needing basically a some repairs. The red owner said that it's best to change the whole trans, although I'm doubting him on that...

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