So, you are ready to say goodbye to your used car and step into the next century. Getting rid of your old vehicle can be bittersweet, and you need to make sure you get the most bang for your buck. Before selling your used car, take the necessary preparation steps before you slap the “for sale” sign on it.
10 Guidelines for Selling Your Used Car
Cleaning is probably not on your top ten list of favorite things to do, especially when it comes to your car. Whether you sell your car privately or trade it in, it’s essential to show the next buyer that you took care of the vehicle. While it does not need to be perfect, you should hit all of the main areas. You can do other simple things like changing the wiper blades, topping off the fluids, and cleaning out storage areas to make a good impression. You won’t need to spend money on a professional detailing job when you can do it yourself for a low price.
Fix Mechanical Issues
Fix major mechanical issues with the car if it makes financial sense. You will not want to put more money into the car than it’s worth. Find all of your records of maintenance to show to potential buyers. Again, if you have a solid history of maintenance, buyers will be more willing to purchase. Any check engine lights or weird noises will put buyers off in a hurry.
Take Lots of Pictures
If you go to the private selling route, you’ll fair a lot better with tons of photographs. Potential buyers want to “see” the entire score of the vehicle. Include all angles of the car and any special features. Does your vehicle come with a navigation system, a security key fob, or a moon roof? These are extra perks that could help land you the perfect buyer. Use a quality camera that presents your vehicle in the best light possible. Even as a private seller, you will want to offer a level of professionalism that the buyer would get at a dealership.
Collect the Necessary Paperwork
You’ll need to get some paperwork assembled prior to selling your. The title allows you to sell your car, but if you have a lien, you can contact your lender to get details about selling. Each state may require different types of paperwork to be filled out, so you can contact your local DMV and inquire about the necessary documentation. It’s also a good idea to order a vehicle history report even if you have been the sole owner. Companies like Carfax can show the total number of owners and accidents.
Use lots of precautionary measures if you decide to sell your car privately. Use a Google voice phone number and email for an extra layer of security. Screen your callers and search for their names on the internet after you speak with them. Always use your best judgment before you decide to meet anyone in person. When agreeing to meet a potential buyer, always meet in a public location during the day. Request a copy of his or her identification before going out on a test drive, and stay on busy streets. Also, do not provide any additional information such as your address because potential criminals could target your home or other assets.
Get Multiple Offers
While you may be eager to get rid of your car, don’t bite on the first offer that comes through. Do lots of research to price competitively and get good offers. Use websites like Autotrader and Kelly Blue Book to get ideas on where to set the asking price. By following the guidelines above, you’ll be able to hold firm to your price and avoid lowball offers.
Selling your used car is a smooth process as long as you stay organized. Keep a list of the steps that you need to do, and check them off as you go along. Stay safe, consider all of your options, and pay attention to the details. You’ll be able to sell your car quickly and get an excellent return on your investment!
by: Donna Johnson