Becoming a used car dealer in Santo Domingo

the gorgon

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Sep 16, 2010
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And Carfaxes, whether in the US....or any future DR equivalent....are just one of many tools that buyers should use when purchasing a used vehicle.

Respectfully,
Playacaribe2
i agree, wholeheartedly. as a matter of fact, someone should offer an independent service for Carfax. i am the ultimate cynic. when you go to a dealer, he gives you a printed copy of a Carfax. who is to say it has not been doctored. i do not think it is too often that the buyer accesses the site himself.
 

kapitan75

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Jun 3, 2005
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330+ per hour is not bad, if theres a set price for repairs, even better. popping and replacing ball joints versus the whole control arm is cheaper, cutting rotors, mixing parts from other cars, if its a solid repair, it will work.

A person can even kick back and have a small crew or honest mechanic willing to take on regular work out of his shop, and just bankroll, manage the operation and "Eat". Old Monteroes, 4 dr pick ups, honda accords, and siennas still sell well and are very popular. You can pick up any auto with a great reliability record and the people know it will be running good for a few years. A fresh helping of lubricants, at times , is all the viagra a used car might need to get a new start.

the much older cars, pre 79' are still on the road in above average shape. I ve been in a few in the DR that easily have over 300,000 miles on the same motor and clutch. Those owners would take care of their cars, and those DR mechanics in the country side take their work serious.

theres gotta be a group of people in the DR that have enough income to get something a little more than a scooter, but not enough for a new or 4 year old car. just looking at the asking price of some of these beaters online, im sure there would be some intrest from the public.
 

Meemselle

Just A Few Words
Oct 27, 2014
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If I were you, I would ask for this thread to be locked immediately. Copyright the title. Write the book. It is gold. I don't EVEN need to read any of the replies. I know literary gold when I see it. Rock on.
 

zoomzx11

Well-known member
Jan 21, 2006
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interesting discourse. Can anyone tell me iwhat the savings would be to import under the returning Dominican rules a car owned for one year in the US. ? Wife wants a new car .
 

playacaribe2

Well-known member
Jan 9, 2004
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I think the OP is long gone.

There's hardly a day I don't see an article in one of the local rags about dealers complaining how they're not making money, the market is dead, etc, etc.

But, all you gotta do is drive around Santo Domingo and see how many car lots there are on every street. They are virtually everywhere. That tells you something right there.

I have a friend who moves 5-6 cars a year. He flies up to Florida, buys one car or occasionally 2 (doesn't trust anybody else) and ships it down.

He then flies back, and does all of the P/W himself. He says he makes anywhere from 3-5K per car.

So, can it be done? Yes. Would I recommend trying it. No.

And the response to the question about who would do it here for him speaks volumes.

If accurate, those are exceptional margins. My clients would settle for half the lower end of that range.....and some of them have been at it a long, long time. One is the largest Hispanic used car dealer in the state in which he lives....and has outstanding political connections here.

The DR is awash in oversupply, with many dealers ambivalent as to whether they make a sale today, tomorrow, or next month.....much like all those apartments in all those Torres. Lots of laundry.

Respectfully,
Playacaribe2
 

the gorgon

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Sep 16, 2010
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If accurate, those are exceptional margins. My clients would settle for half the lower end of that range.....and some of them have been at it a long, long time. One is the largest Hispanic used car dealer in the state in which he lives....and has outstanding political connections here.

The DR is awash in oversupply, with many dealers ambivalent as to whether they make a sale today, tomorrow, or next month.....much like all those apartments in all those Torres. Lots of laundry.

Respectfully,
Playacaribe2
i have always thought that the used car operation in the DR is merely a laundry. now that you said it, i think i am right, since you have a firm grasp of this type of info. i mean, you go to some backwoods towns in the middle of nowhere, and there are six used car lots. no way!! someone is washing drug money.

there is a guy in Santiago with a huge used car lot. go there and you will find Hummers , Jaguars, and Prados, with flat tires, just gathering dirt. if you took a look at that place, you would immediately conclude that the used car operation has got to be a front.
 

markryan

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Jul 16, 2014
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I am a dealer in North America. I get rock bottom prices. Looked into it seriously. The numbers can make sense no problem even after the taxes. It was finding someone I could trust on the DR end that I could not make happen. Then thought do it all on my own, get residency all that stuff, still you are going to need to find someone you trust and has the connections you need. Lots of greasing palms when it come to importing things especially big ticket item like a car.
 

playacaribe2

Well-known member
Jan 9, 2004
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i have always thought that the used car operation in the DR is merely a laundry. now that you said it, i think i am right, since you have a firm grasp of this type of info. i mean, you go to some backwoods towns in the middle of nowhere, and there are six used car lots. no way!! someone is washing drug money.

there is a guy in Santiago with a huge used car lot. go there and you will find Hummers , Jaguars, and Prados, with flat tires, just gathering dirt. if you took a look at that place, you would immediately conclude that the used car operation has got to be a front.
39 actual dealers in Moca......and a whole lot more people with 3-10 cars out in front of their casas.

Moca likely has more cars per capita than Santo Domingo or Santiago.


Respectfully
Playacaribe2
 

playacaribe2

Well-known member
Jan 9, 2004
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I am a dealer in North America. I get rock bottom prices. Looked into it seriously. The numbers can make sense no problem even after the taxes. It was finding someone I could trust on the DR end that I could not make happen. Then thought do it all on my own, get residency all that stuff, still you are going to need to find someone you trust and has the connections you need. Lots of greasing palms when it come to importing things especially big ticket item like a car.
I hope your numbers include shrinkage, damage or theft at the port, payments to the PN, backup generators, real security, the loss you had to take on the car the Generals wife just had to have, the cost of obtaining financing for your customers, etc.

You can forget using numbers calculations based on a North American model of selling cars. This is a different world. It is doable, but it is not easy, nor always profitable.


Respectfully,
Playacaribe2
 

markryan

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Jul 16, 2014
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I hope your numbers include shrinkage, damage or theft at the port, payments to the PN, backup generators, real security, the loss you had to take on the car the Generals wife just had to have, the cost of obtaining financing for your customers, etc.

You can forget using numbers calculations based on a North American model of selling cars. This is a different world. It is doable, but it is not easy, nor always profitable.


Respectfully,
Playacaribe2
Yep I understood all that. That's where the guy with connections was needed. Needless to say I am still here in North America selling cars. Lol. Could be worse I could have tried it without any research and been burned big time.
 

melphis

Living my Dream
Apr 18, 2013
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One thing that hasn't been mentioned yet is the car being imported has to have a clear clean title. Write offs, and rebuilds are not allowed and will be refused entry. Unless that has been changed too.
I was going to import a car from Western Canada but we don't have title documents like the US or Quebec so I was told no way it would be allowed.
 

playacaribe2

Well-known member
Jan 9, 2004
9,050
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One thing that hasn't been mentioned yet is the car being imported has to have a clear clean title. Write offs, and rebuilds are not allowed and will be refused entry. Unless that has been changed too.
I was going to import a car from Western Canada but we don't have title documents like the US or Quebec so I was told no way it would be allowed.
While it has been mentioned before, it has not been brought up in this thread....until now.

Title must be free and clear of liens. You cannot bring in a Salvage titled vehicle, but you can import a rebuilt vehicle with a branded title after it has been registered for a period of time. I am not quite sure if that period is one year or two.

Respectfully,
Playacaribe2
 

Garyexpat

Well-known member
Sep 7, 2012
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One thing that hasn't been mentioned yet is the car being imported has to have a clear clean title. Write offs, and rebuilds are not allowed and will be refused entry. Unless that has been changed too.
I was going to import a car from Western Canada but we don't have title documents like the US or Quebec so I was told no way it would be allowed.
It hasn't changed. Frame damage cars can not be brought in either (it can have some frame damage but not stated on the title). The parts guys that buy wrecks in the states just pay a shop in Miami or wherever to chop the car and bring over the parts which isn't a problem.
 

playacaribe2

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Jan 9, 2004
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It hasn't changed. Frame damage cars can not be brought in either (it can have some frame damage but not stated on the title). The parts guys that buy wrecks in the states just pay a shop in Miami or wherever to chop the car and bring over the parts which isn't a problem.
Repaired frame damage(collision) water damage (salt or fresh), fire damaged, and theft vehicles can be brought in.....after repairs have been made and they have been properly inspected and registered outside the DR for the requisite time period. They enter as branded titles with the malady noted on the title: Repaired Collision, Repaired water, Repaired fire or Recovered Theft.

Just watched two enter last week at the port.

Respectfully
Playacaribe2
 

Meemselle

Just A Few Words
Oct 27, 2014
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I'm telling you again, dude. Collect whatever material you must. But this is gold. This is your "Don"t Stop the Carnival."
 

mboydii

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Mar 1, 2011
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So if everyone is saying the car business is so bad, then why are there so many car dealers there?


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mboydii

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Mar 1, 2011
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Also what would someone suggest as a needed business in Santo Domingo?


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playacaribe2

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Jan 9, 2004
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So if everyone is saying the car business is so bad, then why are there so many car dealers there?


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Because there is currently no shortage of money that needs to be washed.


Respectfully,
Playacaribe2
 

BNR34

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Mar 20, 2020
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I am a dealer in North America. I get rock bottom prices. Looked into it seriously. The numbers can make sense no problem even after the taxes. It was finding someone I could trust on the DR end that I could not make happen. Then thought do it all on my own, get residency all that stuff, still you are going to need to find someone you trust and has the connections you need. Lots of greasing palms when it come to importing things especially big ticket item like a car.
Markryan, I 'm replying to a 6 year old post in hopes that you are still interested. I'm here in Dr living in Santiago, used to export cars from Japan to other countries (not US). If you are interested and looking for someone, it would be a pleasure to work with you. I go back and forth to Miami atleast twice a month and purchase cars from Mannheim and Orlando auto auction. I will keep an eye on this post for any updates. looking forward to hear from you.