Selling Your Car? Here’s What You Need to Know

Selling Your Car Here’s What You Need to Know main

Buying a new car is a really exciting procedure, but there’s a messy job to get out of the way first – the process of selling your old car. There are several ways to go about this, all with their own benefits and disadvantages.

You could go the easiest route, and trade your old car into the dealer from whom you’re buying your new car. Similarly simple, you could offer it up to one of the many car-buying services that guarantee to purchase your car from you.

You could also go the most difficult but most potentially rewarding route and sell your car privately. Regardless of which you choose, it’s vitally important that you know how much your car is worth. If you’re asking yourself ‘how do I value my car’ then rest easy knowing that there are plenty of tools out there with which to accomplish this.

A trustworthy independent valuation from a company such as Parkers is a good place to start, as is looking at classified adverts from other people trying to sell the same car as you.

Why is a car valuation so important?

Don’t underestimate the importance of an accurate and independent car valuation when trying to sell.

Knowing what your car is worth means you can get a fair deal, whether you’re selling to a private buyer, a car buying firm or trading it in against another vehicle.

An accurate valuation means you can set your price firmly and not be swayed by people trying to score a quick deal by telling you you’ve overpriced your car.

Accurate valuations are useful outside of just selling, too. They’re handy when taking out insurance, as you’ll often be asked a car’s value at the start of your policy. They’re also handy to have at the end of a PCP finance deal, as knowing what your car’s worth can help you decide if you want to hand it back to the finance company or pay the final balloon payment and sell it privately.

How to accurately value your car

Honesty is the best policy when dealing with any sort of valuation. Most car valuation tools will adjust their final price based on the vehicle’s specification, condition and mileage. Report any damage as it is, or you’ll just be giving buyers a point on which to haggle.

Using at least one trustworthy tool is best but try to back this up with a second source – a different valuation tool or looking through the classified ads can make your valuation even more secure.

Selling Your Car Here’s What You Need to Know

What should I do once I’ve got my valuation?

Your valuation is just a guide price, and you’re free to charge whatever you like when selling your car.

Desperate for a quick sale? Undercut the valuation and sell your car faster. Think your motor’s in truly exceptional condition or has some really desirable extras? Then you can price above the valuation and get a few extra quid.

More tips for a smooth sale

  • Thoroughly clean the car inside and out, and remove personal belongings
  • If listing the car privately, take plenty of high-quality, landscape orientation photos
  • Be willing to share the registration with potential buyers who may want to carry out an HPI check or MOT history check
  • Remember to include contact details where people can easily reach you
  • Be willing to adjust your price – if your car hasn’t sold for weeks and weeks, it might just be too expensive
  • Consider repairing defects before you sell – you could make your money back with a higher price

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