If you’re planning to sell your car so that you can get a new one or because you need some cash for something else, your aim is to get as much as possible for it. Needless to say, if you’re pressed for time and have to sell quickly, you may well have to settle for a lower price, but in other cases, there’s no need to do so.
You can sell your old car privately or through a company specialising in car trading, but there are still some steps you need to take in order to maximize the profit. Here’s a simple checklist, which can be used as a mini-guide about selling your old car.
Determine the worth
Before you put your car up for sale, you have to find out how much it is worth in today’s market. Now, depending on how quickly you need to sell, you might get a bit under the going price, but that’s only if the matter is urgent. You can look at car ads and find the same model and age and see how much the people are asking for their cars. Alternatively, you may check with your car dealer and see how much they think you can get for your car. Chances are, you’ll get a pretty clear picture of how much you can expect to get for it.
Have the papers ready
Depending on local or national regulations, you may need to provide various papers when you really start selling your car. In most cases, you’ll need to sign the title before handing your car over to its new owner. Another document that buyers appreciate is maintenance records, which shows that you have kept up with scheduled maintenance. In case you’ve lost those papers, go to your mechanic and get a copy. That will also allow you to get a better price.
Next, there’s a bill of sale, which determines rights and liabilities and you want to have as few of the latter as possible. You don’t want to be held responsible for any damage that happens after you’ve sold your car. Finally, if the car is still under the manufacturer’s warranty, you need to prove it to the buyer. You might get a bit more money and the buyer will be happy to get a car in such state.
Make it presentable
Experts who make a living by helping people buy and sell cars understand that the visual appeal of the car is very important when trying to close a deal. So, if you’re about to sell your car, make sure it looks as good as possible. Wash and wax the exterior, vacuum the floor and seats. Replace old floor mats and make any other small and inexpensive changes that can help your car look better before you take pictures of it. The rims and tyres should also be cleaned, as people tend to pay attention to such details. The same attention should be given to the windows.
The more pics of your car you take, the more confident you’ll appear to potential buyers. Cars with no pictures or just one or two raise suspicion and rightly so. If you have nothing to hide, you’ll advertise your car better and attract more people. It’s vital that you take shots from every possible angle and chose the best ones to include in your ad. The exterior is important, since people want to see that there’s no visible damage. Also, they’ll be looking at signs of wear-and-tear on the steering wheel and seats. Don’t hide anything, because you don’t want a potential buyer to be disappointed when they come to see your car and discover some problem or fault that they couldn’t see in the pictures.
You need to decide if your price is firm, OBO (“or best offer”) or a quick sale. Your choice will depend on your need to sell the car, as well as the condition of your car. Take into account the mileage, history of accidents, damage and repairs and the number of previous owners. You also need to decide on the methods of payment that you’re ok with. Finally, those who come to inspect the vehicle are interested, so you have to give your sales pitch. Depending on how much you know about the buyer, you should focus on the things they are likely to look for in their new car.
Selling your used car can be stressful, but only if your expectations are unrealistic or if you don’t put enough effort in making it sellable. Basically, the harder you try, the better chances you’ll have. So, good luck selling your car and investing the money in whatever you need or want to.