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10 tips for selling your car

October 25, 2021 by

Looking to sell your car? Well, with a bit of time and effort, you might be able to get more money than you expected. These handy tips should help you get the best price for your used car.

Read on for 10 tips for selling your car, or feel free to tap the green button below to find out more on selling your car with carwow. It’s easy, free and can all be done from the comfort of your sofa.

10 tips for selling your car

1 – Check for any damage or scuffs — and repair if necessary

Before doing anything else, it’s worth giving your car a once-over to check for any damage or scuffs to the bodywork you may not already be aware of.

Not only does this give you a chance to have any repairs done, but it also means potential buyers won’t spot any nasty surprises if they come to view your car.

If someone turns up to view it and there’s noticeable damage that you haven’t mentioned, they could walk away or offer less than you’re expecting.

2 – Have your car serviced

A well-serviced car is always appealing to buyers. This will give them the confidence that it’s been looked after well and that major issues are less likely to occur as a result of mistreating the car’s oily bits. A recent service at the point of sale is even better.

3 – Get a fresh MOT

Often people sell their cars when it’s coming towards the end of an MOT — but if you want to maximise its value, it’s better to sell soon after an MOT.

Similar to a fresh service, a recent MOT will give buyers confidence that the car is in good condition.

In contrast, if you’re selling a car a month before its MOT expires buyers may see this as a red flag. You may get less interest in your car and lower offers as a result – even if the car is likely to pass its next MOT test without any issues.

4 – Check you have the right paperwork in place

Although legally speaking you can sell a car without paperwork, it’s much easier to do if you have the right documents in place.

The most important one is the V5C (the car’s logbook.) If you have this, great. If not, it only costs £25 to get a replacement from the DVLA. It could prove the difference between someone buying your car or walking away.

A car without a V5C may put doubt into the minds of potential buyers that you’re the legal owner, as stolen cars are often sold without one. Not to say that’s the case of course, but you do have to put yourself in the shoes of the buyer.

It’s worth digging out any service records for the car, as well as owner’s manuals or any guides for tech inside. A well-documented car is often a sign of one that’s been well looked after and will be sure to add appeal.

5 – Have it professionally cleaned

It’s one thing heading out to your car with a bucket and a sponge to make your car shine but to make it truly stand out, it’s worth having a professional car valeting service work their magic.

These can either be large companies or a one-man mobile band, but they’ll all offer a range of products and services to suit your budget.

This can be either a quick clean, a full inch-perfect detailing of your car or anything in between – but all can add value to your car by simply having it look its absolute best.

If you’re unsure of where to look for these services, a quick Google search should help you find a local business.

6 – Get a price in mind

Knowing how much money to expect to make when selling your car doesn’t have to be pure guesswork.

The quickest and easiest way to do so is to have a valuation, and handily, you can have on for free through carwow. Just tap that green button below to open up a free valuation — all you need to do is enter a few details about the car.

If you’re still unsure though, take a look at adverts for similar examples to your car and see what they’re selling for.

7 – Consider where to sell it

Where you plan on selling your car could have an effect on how quickly you find a buyer, and how much money you get for it.

If you wish to sell your car quickly and hassle-free, you can with carwow. All you need to do is enter some details of the car along with a few photos, and our network of dealers will come back to you with no-obligation, haggle-free offers.

Once you get one you’re happy with, the dealer will arrange an inspection and collection of your car — all you need to do is hand the keys over. Tap the green button below to head over to the dedicated page.

If you’d prefer to sell privately though, you have a number of options.

Dedicated classified websites

Dedicated classified sites are a great way to reach buyers across the country, as well as those looking for a specific model — meaning you’re more likely to find a knowledgeable buyer. It’s worth keeping in mind many charge fees for listing, though.

Social media

Social media sites are becoming a more common way to sell cars, with Facebook Marketplace a particularly popular one. These are often good if you want to sell quickly, but buyers here typical may be looking for lower-cost cars as a result — and you don’t get the same level of security when selling as you would on dedicated car sales sites.

If you have a car with a keen enthusiast following, you may find selling through an owner’s group page a successful route.

Auction sites

Auction sites such as eBay are another really common way to sell cars. eBay in particular comes with a lot of buyer security and is a good way to reach a wide audience.

If you’re selling to the highest bidder though, you can’t guarantee you’ll get what you’re expecting — although you can set reserve prices if you have a minimum amount in mind. Alternatively, you can list with a set ‘buy it now’ price, but these tend to cost more to list.

8 – Take the right photos

If you’ve gone to great lengths to get your car looking fit and fresh, you want to make sure to show it off right.

Spending a bit of time and effort to take a great set of photos could be the difference between a buyer looking at your car compared to another.

Some basic rules to follow include making sure your car is fully in frame, taking photos in landscape and taking them in good lighting. If you’re looking for a more in-depth guide to taking great car photos, tap the green button below.

9 – Put together a great listing

Your car is looking fresh, the paperwork is all in order and you’ve got a lovely set of photos of it too. Now it’s time to build a great listing.

If you are selling privately, you’ll need to provide a description of the car. Be as in-depth as informative as possible — let property buyers know about all the must-have features it has, its service history and be honest about any imperfections.

Try not to waffle though – avoid claiming it’s a ‘reluctant sale’, telling them you want something faster or that you have great memories with it. You’re here to sell the car, not the story behind it.

10 – Be prepared to stand your ground with buyers

If you’re selling privately, don’t be afraid to stand your ground with buyers. Just because somebody has come to look at the car doesn’t mean you have to agree to them giving you a lower price than you want for it.

Don’t feel pressured into buyers that say they’ll pay cash in hand right there for a lower cost, or allow them to guilt-trip you if they’ve made a long trip to see it.

With patience and proper research, you’ll be able to get a fair price for your car — even if it means dealing with a few tyre kickers along the way.

Sell your car with carwow

Looking to make an easy, stress-free sale? Now you can sell your car with carwow.

All you need to do is provide some details on your car, take a selection of pictures and wait for the offers to roll in from a network of trusted dealers.

Once you have an offer you’re happy with, just accept it and the dealer buying will take care of the rest. All you need to do is hand the keys over. Tap here to find out more.