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Guy Uses Craigslist to Trade Phone Up to Porsche

By - Source: Tom's Guide US | B 63 comments

The internet -- where you can get almost anything for next to nothing.

There are many good deals to be had on Craigslist, but would you believe that at teenage boy managed to turn his old cell phone into a Porsche Boxster S in two years?

At 15-years-old Steven Ortiz traded an old cell phone for another, presumably better, cell phone. That eventually led him to an iPod touch, which he was able to trade for a series of dirt bikes. He then went from bikes back to electronics, when he got a MacBook Pro. He then traded the Apple laptop for an 1987 Toyota 4Runner – but at 15, Ortiz wasn't able to drive it.

Ortiz then traded the SUV for something he could drive – a hot-rodded, off-road golf cart. He then went back to bikes, getting a dirt bike, then street bike, then back to cars, eventually ending up with a 1975 Ford Bronco.

That 1975 Ford Bronco was a collector's item worth around $15,000. That's not bad, especially considering he started from a cell phone that's probably untradeable today. But driving around in an old Bronco isn't nearly as cool as in a roadster; so at age 17, Ortiz now owns a 2000 Porsche Boxster S, which he drives to school.

He's now a bit of a celebrity, with his story all over the news. "I get so many people who say, `Can you trade my phone for a car?' I just say, `Yeah. It's not that easy,"' Ortiz said.

Ortiz isn't going to stay with Boxster S, however, as he's finding that the maintenance costs are a bit high at $150 for an oil change and $1,000 for a tune up.

Now he's looking for something a bit more economical – a Cadillac Escalade.

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Top Comments
  • 30 Hide
    mancream , July 22, 2010 11:24 AM
    no man its an excuse for money laundering. hes a small time drug dealer
  • 17 Hide
    Anonymous , July 22, 2010 1:18 PM
    What this doesn't mention and the article on Yahoo did is that he spends 5 hours a day on Craigslist looking for just the right deals, and this took him two years. If he just got a minimum wage job, he could have earned $15,600 in two years. (let's say $6/hr x 25 hours a week x 52 weeks a year x 2 years)
  • 16 Hide
    seboj , July 22, 2010 1:45 PM
    Cellphone to a Porsche? Lame. This was originally done by a guy who traded up starting with one red paperclip and ended up with a house in Canada and his own holiday, in less than a year.

Other Comments
  • 3 Hide
    bruce0750 , July 22, 2010 11:09 AM
    he should have sold the 1975 Ford Bronco for 15000 then use 9000 to buy a Porsche Boxster S, this way he won't lose 6000. Then he can use that extra 6000 to buy another used car for trading. But still, pretty impressive that he started with a phone and ended up with a Porsche.
  • 3 Hide
    bebangs , July 22, 2010 11:10 AM
    he should buy a lot of phones and do it all over again.
  • 30 Hide
    mancream , July 22, 2010 11:24 AM
    no man its an excuse for money laundering. hes a small time drug dealer
  • 9 Hide
    welshmousepk , July 22, 2010 11:27 AM
    mancreamno man its an excuse for money laundering. hes a small time drug dealer


    :lol: 

    wonder how long before the government try to tax him on his 'earnings'.

    good on him though, the kid obviously has very good business sense.
  • 0 Hide
    Railgun1369 , July 22, 2010 11:29 AM
    Quote:
    "I get so many people who say, `Can you trade my phone for a car?' I just say, `Yeah. It's not that easy,"' Ortiz said.


    Yeah, because he didn't. A ridiculously misleading title and everyone is carrying it. Not to mention it took him two years. If you wait long enough...
  • 8 Hide
    kartu , July 22, 2010 11:38 AM
    Quote:
    but would you believe that at teenage boy managed to turn his old cell phone into a Porsche Boxster S in two years?


    I'd rather believe some marketing guys are making "fresh" news with old fairy tales.
  • -4 Hide
    redkachina , July 22, 2010 12:10 PM
    welshmousepkwonder how long before the government try to tax him on his 'earnings'. good on him though, the kid obviously has very good business sense.


    +1
  • 3 Hide
    rohitbaran , July 22, 2010 12:44 PM
    Hardly believable that someone would trade his better cell phone for that kid's crappy one.
  • 7 Hide
    zampolit , July 22, 2010 1:00 PM
    Agree, the 2000 Boxster S is worthless. I would of sold the Bronco but I think 9k is really high. No real "porsche" guy will ever call a boxster a porsche so they have absolute value other than laughing at the guy who bought it.(which is another story...a guy?! Didn't they even have a full Two and a Half Men episode making fun of guys driving boxsters?) lol
  • 7 Hide
    r0x0r , July 22, 2010 1:00 PM
    I believe that this actually happened. It's proof that you don't need money to make money, just creativity and action.

    It's also proof that ANYONE can create wealth if they're willing to think outside of the box they live in.
  • 17 Hide
    Anonymous , July 22, 2010 1:18 PM
    What this doesn't mention and the article on Yahoo did is that he spends 5 hours a day on Craigslist looking for just the right deals, and this took him two years. If he just got a minimum wage job, he could have earned $15,600 in two years. (let's say $6/hr x 25 hours a week x 52 weeks a year x 2 years)
  • 4 Hide
    warezme , July 22, 2010 1:32 PM
    I dunno minimum wage for two yours at McDonalds or surfing craiglist..., I think craiglist for 5 hours is better.
  • -4 Hide
    fooldog01 , July 22, 2010 1:35 PM
    The 2000 Boxster S is an absolute joke. A whopping 250 crankshaft rated HP. What an awesome "sports car". It has a Porsche badge so apparently it's "sweet".

    And seriously, if you are stupid enough to pay $150 to get your oil changed, you should be kicked in the throat. With his complete lack of ability to keep from getting ripped off on auto maintenance, it sounds like he was destined to own a Boxster from the beginning anyway.
  • 1 Hide
    hokkdawg , July 22, 2010 1:36 PM
    Just goes to show, one man's trash is another man's treasure.
  • 16 Hide
    seboj , July 22, 2010 1:45 PM
    Cellphone to a Porsche? Lame. This was originally done by a guy who traded up starting with one red paperclip and ended up with a house in Canada and his own holiday, in less than a year.

  • 6 Hide
    seboj , July 22, 2010 1:46 PM
    sebojCellphone to a Porsche? Lame. This was originally done by a guy who traded up starting with one red paperclip and ended up with a house in Canada and his own holiday, in less than a year.



    Link didn't post for some reason.

    http://oneredpaperclip.blogspot.com/
  • 2 Hide
    jellico , July 22, 2010 1:50 PM
    welshmousepkwonder how long before the government try to tax him on his 'earnings'. good on him though, the kid obviously has very good business sense.

    Technically, he hasn't realized a gain yet, so his "earnings" are not taxable. It's not until he actually sells one of these items that the earnings become realized, and hence, taxable. And for those interesting, it would be his realized gain (sale price less his basis, which is the cost of the original phone) times the capital gains tax rate which, in 2010, was 15%, but for 2011 and beyond will be based on your highest marginal tax rate.

    This is the same thing that happens with guys like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. Most of their net worth is in the stock that they hold. However, until they actually sell it, it isn't taxed.
  • 2 Hide
    aethm , July 22, 2010 2:05 PM
    I've managed some pretty good trades on craigslist. Soundblaster Live---> 1980's huffy mountain bike --> Old Raleigh touring bike --> 2006 Bianchi Hybrid bike --> 2005 KHS road bike --> Broken Macbook pro (which just had a bad HD)--> STOLEN... DOH!
  • 2 Hide
    SoiledBottom , July 22, 2010 2:08 PM
    Dressed for success ...black socks with white sneakers
  • 3 Hide
    distanted , July 22, 2010 2:14 PM
    He's not exactly the business guru the bloggers want to paint him. He spent most of his last 2 years on a website trading up to a car he couldn't afford to maintain. Anybody with a part-time job could have done better.
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