Some people assume that selling a vehicle is a time-consuming, complicated process that requires jumping through a myriad of legal hoops. Because of this, they simply trade in their vehicle when purchasing a new ride. You’ll get more money for your vehicle, however, if you sell it directly to a buyer instead of a dealer. Furthermore, there are steps you can take to simplify the process and ensure a positive outcome.
#1) Price High
To get top dollar for your vehicle, price it high but be willing to lower it if requested. Many buyers will attempt to negotiate a lower price, and some will only purchase a vehicle if the seller lowers the price. By pricing your vehicle high, you can meet with buyers somewhere in the middle. If you want to sell your vehicle for $8,000, for instance, list it at $9,000. Following this tip will help you get the best price for your vehicle.
#2) Prepare Documents
You’ll need to prepare certain documents when selling a vehicle. Different states have different requirements, but normally you’ll need the title and a bill of sale at minimum. If you can’t find these documents, you may not be able to legally transfer ownership of your vehicle to another person. Contact your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) for more information about required documentation.
#3) Detail Your Vehicle
The cleaner your vehicle, the more it will appeal to prospective buyers. Even if you rarely if ever wash your vehicle, you should give it a thorough detailing job before selling it. This includes washing and waxing the body, cleaning the tires and wheels, vacuuming the interior and cleaning the windows.
#4) List Online
Creating an online listing will help you reach a larger audience of buyers, thus reducing the time it takes to sale your vehicle. There are dozens of websites where you can list your vehicle, some of which include eBay Motors, TrueCar, Cars.com and Auto Trader. When using these sites, however, it’s essential that you check your phone or email for inquires. Failure to respond to buyer inquiries will only hurt your chances of selling.
#5) Meet Buyers in Public
Whether you’re showing off your vehicle to a prospective buyer or conducting the final transaction, you should always meet buyers in a public location. A grocery store parking lot or even a police station parking lot is a safer meeting location than your own home address. If a buyer isn’t willing to meet in a public location such as this, ignore him or her and move on to the next buyer.
#6) Keep Records of Buyers
In addition to meeting buyers in public, another tip to protect against car-buying scams is to keep records of buyers. When you allow a prospective buyer to test drive your vehicle, make a note of his or her name and phone number. If the buyer attempts to scam you, you’ll have his or her information on file.
#7) Be Patient
You can’t expect to sell your vehicle overnight. Private sale vehicles often take longer to turn than dealer vehicles. You may find a buyer within a few days, or it may several weeks. Be patient while continuing to respond to inquiries, and you’ll eventually find a buyer.
Selling a vehicle shouldn’t give you a headache. By following these seven tips, you’ll have an easier time getting top dollar for your vehicle without pulling your hair out.