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Hustle

Hustle

“I’ve always been a car nut,” confesses Paul Ribbons, “but I was never bothered about number plates until one day in 2003. My business partner at the time was about to purchase P16 RME – his surname was Pigrome. He was dead excited but I couldn’t see what all the fuss was about. I ribbed him a bit about it. I told him that it didn’t even spell his name properly and asked him what was the point. He wasn’t very pleased and he challenged me to do better finding a plate to represent my name.

I took a pen and paper and scribbled a few things down. My nickname is ‘Ribsy’ so I started writing things like R18SY but then I thought R188ONS! Eureka! My business partner, Matt, said there was no way that number would be available, but I wouldn’t be put off: I needed to find out and my mission to track down the registration began.”After some research, Paul discovered that R188 ONS was due to be sold at auction. He was excited to find that the reserve price was just £600. Paul thought he had a good chance as there are not that many people with the name Ribbons.

After some research, Paul discovered that R188 ONS was due to be sold at auction. He was excited to find that the reserve price was just £600. Paul thought he had a good chance as there are not that many people with the name Ribbons.“But a friend of mine, who had traded a few number plates, was quite sure that R188 ONS would go for at least £5,000 and that the only way I would get it for less would be if I stole it. He said that wedding companies, haberdashery companies and various traders would all be interested in the number.

“But a friend of mine, who had traded a few number plates, was quite sure that R188 ONS would go for at least £5,000 and that the only way I would get it for less would be if I stole it. He said that wedding companies, haberdashery companies and various traders would all be interested in the number.
“I’m really pleased to have had that conversation because Kevin conditioned me to accept that I was going to have be prepared to pay more for it than I had originally expected. He even asked me what was the most I would pay to stop someone else buying it. What a great question! That’s when I realised that I would pay five figures – maybe even £20k.

“On the day of the auction I travelled up to Wakefield Steam Museum where the sale was being held. I was all psyched-up and the bidding was frenzied. I ramped up every bid by £500, thinking I would knock the confidence of the competition and show my determination. I was also letting the auctioneer know that I was serious.“There were two telephone bidders, and three people besides me bidding in the room. When the price got to around £5,000 the bidding slowed and I could feel that it was mine. The final hammer price was £5700. Wow, what a roller coaster ride!

“There were two telephone bidders, and three people besides me bidding in the room. When the price got to around £5,000 the bidding slowed and I could feel that it was mine. The final hammer price was £5700. Wow, what a roller coaster ride! I deal with property auctions so I do have experience in selling and buying via auction, but this is the only time I have wanted something that bad. After the usual fees and

I deal with property auctions so I do have experience in selling and buying via auction, but this is the only time I have wanted something that bad. After the usual fees and taxes the end price was something in the region of £7200. I consider it a great bargain that I will never be able to replace and one I can hand down to my kids.

“The problem is I’ve now become a bit of a number plate snob. With the help of Regtransfers I recently purchased 18 PMR for my weekend car. So, beware; once the plate bug bites it could end up costing you a few quid. But, for me, it’s all been worth it. Little did I know how useful this plate would be as a marketing and promotional tool, many years later, when I wrote my first book.

“I currently trade property, buying run down properties and then selling them at auction without doing any work on them. It’s been very lucrative and, to date, I have been involved in well over 500 transactions over a period of some 18 years. Most people seem to believe that you should buy in auction to make money, but I do it the other way round and make my money selling at auction. When I was a young man, someone told me that to become wealthy you need to do the exact opposite to everyone else.

I took that advice to heart. I also understand the first rule of business: find a market and supply it. In 2011 I decided to write a book on the subject; I called it Hustle Your Way to Property Success. I’m rather proud of the achievement as I’m dyslexic and left school with the reading and writing age of a seven year-old. I have overcome those disadvantages by self-education and determination.”

Hustle Your Way to Property Success
Ecademy Press Limited 28 September 2011
ISBN-10: 1907722572
ISBN-13: 978-1907722578

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