Whether you’re trading up to something newer, moving down to a smaller size or even an adjustment in lifestyle or transportation needs at some point, you’ll need to sell a car.
In most instances, you’ll want to maximise your return on the vehicle since you’ll have the money to help buy its replacement or repair, however you may want to get shot off as quickly and as easily as you can.
In any case, there’s an increasing number of different ways to sell a vehicle – as well as a variety of steps you can take to ensure you get the most money for it.
Check out the article to find out which selling method is best for you, along with our top 6 car selling tips.
The selling of a car through classified ads for private individuals
Traditional classified services such as Auto Trader remain a popular way to sell used cars. If you are looking to sell sports, performance or classic vehicles take a look at advertising in a specialist magazine or on a similar website If you’re looking to sell a used, low-value automobile, try the free-ad sites (such as Gumtree) and local free papers.
Be sure that your advertisement includes a precise description of the vehicle, and includes all necessary information such as the exact model and specification such as age, mileage, length of MOT and the service history. Be careful not to overdo it, but include all the relevant information such as ‘only 1 owner’, ‘recent cam belt replacement or “new tyres” if applicable. Also, make sure you have a decent variety of decent quality photographs and interior photos.
Be prepared for people who aren’t on time in time, are time wasters and agressive hagglers. Be sure that the buyer is insured to test drive and possess a valid driving licence. Be wary of crooks: be careful about sharing personal information online, do not leave anyone in your car with keys or documents Be aware of your personal security and safety every moment of the day.
Tips for taking payment in a private sale, note two receipts of any deposit or payment by the buyer and you, including the car’s make the model, the registration number and the model as well as the price at which payment was made. Write down both your and the buyer’s full names and addresses, with the date and time. Be aware of counterfeit banknotes. A banker’s draft can be more secure, but could take up to two weeks to be cleared, and forgeries often occur. Don’t hand over the keys until the funds are safe in your account.
Selling a car through an online portal
There’s an increasing number of companies who offer to purchase your car, such as webuyanycar. You enter your car’s details on the company’s website (such as mileage and age) get a quote and then take it to a local dealership to be assessed. If all is good, the money is generally paid straight into your bank account, but administrative fees might be due.
Such companies only offer a price giving margin for profit once they sell the car at auction. The online valuations are only a preliminary prior to the car’s inspection, and may be substantially diminished once the vehicle is inspected.
Another option is to utilize an online platform like Motorway, which gives you an estimate of the value of your vehicle and then sends it to dealers. If you choose to accept the highest offer, your car will be taken away for free.
Be aware that although using online car buying options like these are extremely useful, you’re probably going to get a better deal selling the car privately or by putting it directly to auction. However, even if you’ve no plans to sell your car through an online service They can be a great method to obtain a quick appraisal of your vehicle that you can use later to establish a price for selling your car privately.
For a site similar to We Buy Any Car click here…
A car can be sold in part exchange
If your vehicle is just several years old or if you’re purchasing a vehicle from an identical manufacturer then trading it in for part exchange is the best and easiest option. Franchised dealers are usually keen to purchase second-hand vehicles for their stores, but may prefer models that are manufactured by the same brand they sell new. Independent dealers typically accept almost any quality vehicle in exchange for a part-exchange.
If you choose to part exchange, you must focus on the “price to swap (or ‘price to change’) – that’s the difference between the exchange price of your old vehicle and the price of the new model, instead of the price of each. A dealer may offer a reduction on the new car to offset an unsatisfactory appraisal of the old model, for example or provide a good price on your old one to tempt you into purchasing the new vehicle at close to list price (the price is listed on their brochure).
Be aware that many dealers will be looking for a margin any second-hand vehicle they purchase off, and so the part-ex cost is likely to be at the same level as what you’d receive from selling privately. It’s certainly more practical.
A car can be sold to the dealer
If your car is relatively new, is low-mileage and is in high demand second-hand, or if it is a model with a specialization or a particular appeal and appeals to a particular group of people, then a dealer (franchised or an independent) specialising in that marque or kind of car may be interested in purchasing it outright. Good-looking, well-maintained vehicles are also valued by small local merchants, especially if it’s a car they know they can be able to sell quickly. This may be a quick and easy method of selling even if it’s not the most profitable.
Selling a car at an auction
A car that you want to sell at an auction is a less personal alternative to dispose of it. However, there are no guarantees of selling and prices aren’t usually high. It is necessary to pay an entry fee and establish an auction reserve; if the vehicle does not sell at the amount you set, you’ll be required to return it or try again in another sale. While you will receive payment from the auction firm quickly, the commission will be taken out.
Auction sites, like Ebay is a popular way to buy and sell second-hand automobiles of all kinds and ages. There is usually a small fee and can determine a reserve amount; Ebay has a ‘buy it now’ feature at a set price. Bidders can have questions before the sale, but as it is correctly described, bids will be legally binding. The same process applies to creating an Ebay advertisement the way you would write a classified ad, as mentioned above.
Because the buyer is purchasing without having seen the item, you shouldn’t expect to make a profit on. Be wary of bidders who have no Ebay track record or positive feedback. Do not do business with anyone that offers you a price that is suspiciously high. price for settling the transaction outside of Ebay’s payment system (ie the transfer of your bank account details).
Donate a car to charity
If you are trapped with a vehicle that has no value or you simply can’t face the tyre-kickers, you could give it away to charity. A variety of charities, from major household names to smaller local fund-raising groups, are signed up to schemes whereby cars donated to them can be collected and either sold (if you’re able to drive it) or scrapped and recycled, which will benefit the charity with the amount paid. Sometimes, this is performed in conjunction with social enterprises, such as ones that offer work experience to the most vulnerable.
You can declare the contribution to be Gift Aid, which will increase the money your charity is eligible to receive. Explore the various schemes but be aware that some allow fees for administration and vehicle collection. This reduces the amount of money that a charity receives.
Six tips to sell your vehicle
Before you begin drafting an ad, there are a few things you can do maximise the appeal of your vehicle. Here are our top suggestions on how to prepare your car for sale.
1. Be sure to get the right price
Don’t undersell your car. If you are considering any exchange deal or place your car up for sale check out similar models for sale online. Look for cars that have a similar size and model. It will give you an idea of how much the price of your car could be.
2. Think about an MOT (and make sure you have all the paperwork)
A car that recently received an MOT is more attractive than one that hasn’t. Not only does it mean the buyer won’t have to make a payment for a new one in the first place, but buyers can be more confident that the vehicle is in a good state.
Also, make sure you have all the relevant documentation on hand. Here’s a quick paperwork checklist:
Invoices and receipts that are significant for work completed or for parts purchased.
If applicable, make sure you can prove any unpaid loans were paid and that the vehicle can be sold to you.
3. Find all the keys and items
Collect together all the keys for your car that includes (if your car has lock wheel nuts) the socket-style tools to unlock alloy wheels. Re-install any components or accessories you might have removed, like an extra shelf for your boot or a tool kit.
4. Find it attractive with a spick & spread
Before taking pictures or taking the vehicle for a test drive, give it a good clean both inside and outside. Take note of the parts a driver is most likely to see including the dashboard and steering wheel, the seats, carpets and windows.
If your car is relatively new and high value it could be worth it to have minor bodywork damage and paintwork scratches repaired or replacing scuffed alloy wheels.
5. Delete your personal data
You might be thinking, what information? But if your phone has Bluetooth it is possible that you have copied your phone book to your car’s memory as a built-in Sat nav may have the addresses of your work, home and family members all saved on its internal memory. That isn’t data you (or your acquaintances) would like to share on accidental means, so you should delete the data before selling it.
You’ll also have to revoke your right to use the car and show proof of this to the buyer.
Here’s how to do it:
You can wipe your data out – go to your car’s infotainment device and look in the Settings menu for options to erase your account and data. You can refer to the manual if cannot locate it on the unit itself. If you’re driving to the buyer or dealer make sure you don’t connect your phone to the car, as otherwise you’ll leave trace information that hasn’t been deleted.
Access is revoked – simply deleting the car’s app off your phone won’t be enough to remove your access. You need to remove the connection between you and your vehicle. Also, you’ll require access to the infotainment system to activate the master reset button. Follow the steps on the unit or check the manual to ensure that your access is fully revoked prior to you sell it.
If you’re still unsure the procedure you can give the manufacturer a call to seek assistance.
6. Honesty is the best policy (really)
It’s tempting to appear somewhat, let’s say economic, in truth. However, if you’re honest about your vehicle and answer all questions honestly, your sale should be easy and the buyer will be granted a very limited legal recourse if the car should be later found to have problems.
Other considerations to make
Legally responsible for your car till the DVLA is informed of the sale, either by the delivery of a small portion in the form of the V5C (logbook) or notifying the DVLA through their online system.
The next full month’s car tax (VED) that you’ve paid will be returned to the person named on the V5C. The new buyer will be required to pay the tax on the car.
Make arrangements to settle any outstanding loan in the hands of your lending institution.
The purchaser should inform the warranty company, in the event that it is applicable, of the change of ownership. Products such as servicing packages in the event that they were purchased initially, may also be transferable.
Remember to notify your insurer that you no longer own the vehicle.