Selling a car, especially a car you’ve owned for years is never easy. Many are reluctant to get rid of the car they’re used to and that they love, which makes them overprice it and be very picky when it comes to potential buyers.
It’s important to do your research and prepare your car for sale. It will take some extra time or even require some additional funds, but it’s worth it because these small tweaks could really help you get a better price in the end.
A thorough inspection
Before you sell the car, you need to be sure about the condition it is in. For the most part, this can be taken care of, simply by driving the car for a while and having a feel for how it works. However, since you’re selling, it’s better to give it a thorough checkup.
Once you do, there are two things that could happen. You could spot a few smaller imperfections and fix them, or you can find a major problem, and warn the buyer about them. This will also affect the price.
It may seem like a small thing, but it actually affects the sale in a real way. A clean car looks better maintained, less worn out and it’s usually sold faster if not at a higher price. If it’s in a rather bad condition, you might need to invest a bit in the cleanup, but you can factor that in the price.
Go into detail with this cleanup or hire a professional to do it. This includes cleaning all the ashtrays, the seats, and the steam cleaning the entire car if the smoke got into the seats after the years of smoking in the car.
Get some help
If you don’t have the time or the knowledge to do the sale alone it is always better to consult a professional. I decided to sell my car online via Carbiz, and had their experienced car brokers take on the job. That way you know that your car is in good hands, so you can rest assured that you will get top value and at the same time you don’t have to waste time and nerves on doing the whole process alone.
The procedure for legally transferring ownership of a vehicle is different depending on where you live, but it’s best to create a bill of sale even if it’s not legally required to do so. That way everyone’s clear on what they’re getting out of the deal.
The bill of sale should always contain basic information: the name and address of the seller and buyer, the vehicle identification number, the year make and model of the car and the odometer reading. If the car is sold “as is” that should be on the bill as well, and if you’re doing a large repair before the sale, the details of it should be included in the bill.
In the end, you need to decide on the price. Start with doing research online and find out for how much a car like yours is usually sold. Once you’ve done that, add the cost of the repairs and cleaning.
Make sure not to just come up with a number, but try to create a price range instead. That way you have an initial price, but you also know how low you are willing to go in the negotiation process.
Selling a car takes preparation and it often requires you to make a gut call in the end. Do your research and be honest and you’ll get the best price.