Don't laugh! This may be the "Equipment Specialist" on the other end of your phone. The products he sells may not be your best buy.
Many Internet Resellers are not stocking wholesalers or stocking distributors.
These companies would have you believe that they (own) have several retail locations throughout the USA. These Internet companies advertise dozens of different brands of automotive service equipment. Check out their address on their website. Where are they really located? What is their local telephone number? Ask to see a picture of their facility. Most of these Internet companies do not stock any products or any service parts. Most of these Internet Resellers are just order takers and do not have a professional sales and service staff.
Here is the way "Internet Reselling" works:
There is a certain large importer of Chinese garage service equipment located in Texas. This importer consigns their "no-name" wheel service products (tire changers, wheel balancers, above ground lifts, etc.) to about 15 small independent garage equipment distributors (with brick and mortar locations) throughout the USA. In most cases, these small equipment warehouses do not own (actually have their own money invested in this inventory) the equipment; they just provide warehouse space and shipping/receiving facilities for the "consigned products". (They do not stock parts). When any Internet Reseller takes an order (and receives payment from the customer) for one of the Chinese generic wheel service products, the Internet Reseller pays the Texas importer. The Texas importer then authorizes the shipping of "his" product from the closest warehouse to the customer. (end user) .
The Internet Reseller may request that the stocking warehouse "rebrand" the generic equipment (apply new labels) so that this generic equipment carries the Internet Reseller's "private" brand. The truth is that all products supplied by this Texas importer are the same for all of their Internet Resellers. Only the labels are changed.
Many Internet Resellers advertise dozens of different "NAME" brands of automotive service equipment...not just the generic brands supplied by the Texas importer. Common sense would tell you that these Internet Resellers do not stock these advertised products. If they don't stock the products, you can be sure that they do not stock the parts for the products. One of the Internet Resellers boasts "We have over 25,000 items in stock". What they should say is "We have access to over 25,000 different items that we can have shipped to you from about 40 different companies". This same Internet Reseller claims "Our warehouses have Show rooms for you to check out our variety of automotive shop equipment as well as fully stocked parts rooms for service after your purchase". Once again, this Internet Reseller is stretching the Truth in the hopes that you believe that this Internet Reseller actually has any ownership in any warehouses outside of whatever state they are located.
Their marketing philosophy is to “throw it all up against the wall and see what sticks”.
A very important consideration when buying an above ground lift is that most above ground lifts sold by the Internet Resellers (those lifts supplied by the Texas Importer) carry only a one year parts warranty. Most Atlas® above ground lifts sold by Greg Smith Equipment carry a five (5) year structural warranty and a (2) two year hydraulic warranty. Another consideration is that Greg Smith Equipment actually stocks (has their own money invested in the inventory) hundreds of lifts, tire changers and wheel balancers in their nine (9) brick and mortar locations. Greg Smith Equipment also stocks a large parts inventory and has several service/sales professionals to answer your questions before and after your purchase.
Our customers may visit one of our nine (9) showroom/warehouse locations to see the equipment on display and/or pick up their equipment to save on the shipping costs. Greg Smith Equipment stocks about 90% of the products we advertise.
Are these Internet Resellers observing and enforcing State Sales Tax laws? Very important for all consumers to understand how avoidance of State Sales Tax can affect you or your business.
State Sales Tax is a very important consideration because it adds “real cost” to the bottom line. There are many proposed legislative changes to the collection of "Internet Sales Tax" before Congress. As of now:
Greg Smith Equipment will collect State Sales Tax on products picked up in their Arizona, Texas, Indiana, Georgia and Florida locations. New Hampshire and Delaware do not have a State Sales Tax and no State Sales Tax is collected if a product is picked up (physically) from either of these two locations.
If Greg Smith Equipment ships a product via common carrier (IE: UPS, FED-EX, commercial truck line) to any state (except Arizona, Texas, Indiana, Georgia or Florida) then Greg Smith Equipment does not collect out of State Sales Tax. Since GSES has a physical location (AZ. TX. IN. GA. FL. and OR.), GSES will collect that State’s Sales Tax when shipping a product into that state from any of our nine (9) brick and mortar locations.
Many customers (private individuals) want to avoid paying sales tax. Private individuals are responsible to pay sales tax on all taxable items. (Unless said items are specifically identified as a State Sales Tax exempt by their State of Residence)
All businesses that are not "reselling" the product are always responsible for paying State Sales Tax. They may avoid paying State Sales Tax at the time of purchase by completing a sales tax exemption form, but they are ultimately responsible for paying State Sales Tax or "use tax". Most types of equipment cannot be depreciated if State Sales Tax has not been paid.
Government agencies (Federal, State and Local) are normally sales tax exempt as are many not-for-profit organizations.
Some of our wheel service equipment is exempt from sales tax when used on a farm. GSES accepts Farm State Sales Tax exemption certificates.
State Sales Tax collection law...some examples (assuming this customer does not qualify for State Sales Tax exemption as identified above):
If a distributor (Reseller) of product has a "nexus" (physical location) in a state that collects State Sales Tax, then any products picked up or shipped (within that State from that nexus) are subject to that State's Sale Tax. Many of these Internet Resellers (perhaps located in California or Massachusettsâ€¦sometimes very difficult to find out where they are located) will tell a potential customer (perhaps living in Missouri) that this customer can have a product shipped to them (from a Missouri warehouse) and the customer is not responsible for paying Missouri State Sales Tax. If the Internet Reseller has a nexus (a physical place of business...small warehouse) in the State of Missouri, this Internet Reseller is providing the wrong State Sales Tax collection information to the potential customer.
The potential customer MUST (unless they are State Sales Tax exemptâ€¦and can prove it) pay the current Missouri State Sales Tax if the shipping address of the potential customer is located in the State of Missouri or the potential customer travels to the State of Missouri to physically pick up the product at the Missouri nexus. Many Internet Resellers claim to have dozens of locations throughout the USA. If these Internet Resellers really have those locations in a potential customer’s State, then the customer is responsible for paying that State’s Sales Tax. Period!
Many customers believe that they can order a product “over the Internet” and/or “over the phone” to avoid paying any State Sales Tax when they physically cross a State line and come to a location in a State that collects State Sales Tax.
This is incorrect. The potential customer may call in from the moon and they still are required to pay State Sales Tax (if the customer is not sales tax exempt) to the State in which the nexus is located if the product is picked up at that location.
State Sales Tax officials have absolutely no sense of humor. One of their main sources of revenue comes from the collection of their State’s Sales Tax and when State Sales Tax is purposely avoided and State’s coffers suffer, there will be stiff penalties for those parties involved in purposely avoiding paying State Sales Tax.