You may have heard of buyer’s regret, but there is also seller’s regret and many riders suffer from this more than buyer’s regret.
Riders can also experience seller’s regret.
Now, we’re not talking about the regret people feel when they get out of motorcycling altogether. This is usually brought on by marriage, the arrival of kids, financial woes or simply getting too old to ride any more.
We are talking about the regret you can feel when you have sold a bike to buy another.
No doubt you will go through a honeymoon period with your new bike, loving all the extra power, tech, comfort, etc that it offers.
However, you can also experience buyer’s remorse if you think you made the wrong decision and should never have sold your old bike.
That’s why cooling off or trial periods after purchase are such a good idea.
Even if you love your new bike there could be some time down the road where you develop a tinge of regret about selling.
It could be a physical feature that is missing from your new bike or it could just be the intrinsic value it held because of the places and adventures it took you on.
It can also be regret about the amount of time you spent customising it and getting it suited to your style. After all, you never recoup that time and expense when you sell.
Some riders sell because they want to move to a different type of riding. A typical example is going from sportsbikes to adventure bikes, then they miss the track days!
Or vice versa: ageing riders who can’t cope with rugged roads anymore go back to road riding, then miss the adventure.
My collection of regrets
On several occasions motorcycle and car collectors have told me they became a collector simply because they never sold anything.
If you think about it, you may have quite a collection now if you had never sold a bike.
But economics, garage space and an abrasive spouse usually means selling a bike is inevitable and can lead to regret.
I probably suffer seller’s regret more than a lot of other riders because I am tempted by so many new bikes I get to road-test.
For example, in the past 20 years, I have owned 19 bikes! Most of the time I only have one in the garage at any one time.
Mrs MBW has actually encouraged me to own multiple bikes. However, I resent the rego and stamp duty going to the government and sell … then regret it!
Consequently, I have left behind a trail of gems that could have been the makings of a great motorcycle collection.
Perhaps my two biggest seller regrets are a BMW HP2 Enduro and a Ducati GT1000. The latter was rare and appreciated in value while the latter had been customised to a high standard and you always lose money on accessories.
How to avoid seller’s regret
Here is a list of things you can do to avoid that feeling of regret when you inevitably sell your motorcycle for an upgrade:
- Don’t sell it. Find a reason to put it aside. Maybe de-register and un-insure it until such time as you want to ride it again;
- Sell it to a friend or relative who will let you periodically ride it again, even if it’s just to remind yourself how much better your new bike is;
- Take lots of photos of your bike before you sell it. They are good for nostalgia, but also to remind you of the bike’s shortcomings. For example, if it leaks, get photos of the oil on the garage floor;
- Never join a maker or model club as you will then have the extra regret of leaving behind club mates when you move to another make or model. However, if it’s an upgrade to the latest model, you may still be able to stay in the club.
- Stay in touch with the person you sell the bike to in case seller’s regret is so great you need to buy the bike back. (I still have the phone numbers of the riders who bought the HP2 and GT1000!)