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I've been pondering flipping an exotic. Particularly the 2007 Aston Martin V8 Vantage.

I have seen a few US examples selling for $35,000 USD. This is roughly $45,000 CDN. If I pay cash there will likely also be wiggle room on the price, but let's stay conservative in this example for the sake of staying realistic.

The cheap 2007 V8 Vantages in Canada are generally going for well over $60,000 CDN.

The import fees for the car would be as follows: Green Tax, At least 13, but less than 14 litres per 100 km: $1,000 The car has an average fuel consumption of 13.84 L/100km

Air Conditioner Tax - $100

5% GST of Vehicle Purchase Price - $2250

RIV Import Fee - $195

Total Import Fees/Taxes: ~$3545

Bringing the total Price to bring the car to Canada at about $48,545CDN.

If I sell the car at a large discount compared to the other cars, say $52,000 that is still almost $4000 profit to be made, again a conservative estimate.

Where are the flaws in this scenario?

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    First flaw: how many potential buyers are there, and of those how many would pay you do this rather than doing it themselves? This sounds like a great way to get your money tied up in something you can't sell and that has ongoing maintenance costs.
    – keshlam
    Jun 3 '16 at 9:17
  • When you say "flipping" what do you mean? You will be doing work on these cars before selling (like flipping a home)? Or you will buy them in the US, import them, then turn around immediately and sell?
    – mikeazo
    Jun 3 '16 at 11:35
  • Where was the car made? There may be excise tax/duty on non-NAFTA manufactured vehicles. What province? There may be a provincial portion of HST added to the 5% GST. Jun 3 '16 at 11:48
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    I'm voting to leave this question open. It is about personal finance. Jun 3 '16 at 15:01
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    @BenMiller - fair enough. But 5 votes to close will still close it. And you'll need to vote to reopen. In which case my powers will come in handy. I got your back. Jun 3 '16 at 20:16
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You can greatly reduce the risk if you can line up a buyer prior to purchasing the car. That kind of thing is common in business, one example is drop shipping. Also there are sales companies that specialize in these kinds of things bringing manufacturers of goods together with customers. The sales companies never take delivery of the product, just a commission on the sales.

From this the manufacturers are served as they have gained a customer for their goods. The buying company is served as they can make a "better" end product. The two parties may have not been brought together had it not been for the sales company so on some level both are happy to pay for the service.

Can you find market inequalities and profit from them? Sure. I missed a great opportunity recently. I purchased a name brand shirt from a discount store for $20. Those shirts typically sell on ebay for $80. I should have cleaned out that store's inventory, and I bet someone else did as by the time I went back they were gone.

That kind of thing was almost risk-less because if the shirts did not sell, I could simply return them for the full purchase price. That and I can afford to buy a few hundred dollars worth of shirts.

Can you afford to float 45K CDN? What if it takes a year to sell the car? What if the economy goes sour and you are left "holding the bag"? Why are not car dealers doing exactly what you propose?

Here in the US this type of thing is called "horse trading" and is very common. I've both lost and made money on these kind of deals. I would never put a significant amount of my net worth at risk.

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