Automotive: 10 things you need to know before selling your car

Used car prices are booming right now, with the shortage of new cars forcing more buyers to turn to used models.

As a result, many people might consider selling their own car in order to get the best possible price for it. But to do that, there are some things you need to consider…

1. How much should I sell my car?

There are a number of factors to consider when pricing your car. Age, mileage and overall condition are key points, but you should also consider its service history and the remaining “life” of consumable parts, such as tires and brakes.

There are also many websites that will be able to give you an instant valuation. However, remember that many of them are based on mileage and age alone, so take a look at online classifieds and other similar cars for sale to make sure you’re on the right track. .

2. Is there a faster way to sell a car?

Sure. Many car buying services are there if you need to sell your car fast. Companies such as webuyanycar will give you an instant valuation and if that suits you, you can take the car to a host of drop off locations and get paid quickly.

Remember that while you may get a better price than trade-in at a dealership, you’re unlikely to get as much money as if you were selling privately. It’s likely to be faster, though.

3. Should I prepare my car before selling it?

Absoutely. Nothing is more off-putting to a potential buyer than a dirty, unprepared car, so go the extra mile to make sure your car is top notch. You can save money by doing it yourself at home, or you can always have it checked by a professional. Don’t be tempted to overload the interior of the car with strong perfumes or air fresheners, as this may also turn people off.

4. If my car’s MOT runs out in three months, is it worth renewing?

Absoutely. If there is only a short time left for your car’s technical inspection, it is always a good idea to have it renewed before the sale. Although it may slow down the whole process, it is more likely to sell quickly if the car has a full MOT.

5. Where should I register my car when I want to sell it?

You are spoiled for choice when it comes to car selling websites. The big hitters are like Auto Trader and eBay, which offer access to thousands of potential buyers and have easy download processes to make selling your car as easy as possible. Remember that you will have to pay to list your car on many sites, while others will charge a fee once you successfully sell your vehicle.

6. Is it better to be honest in an ad?

Sure. When writing your ad, try to be as detailed as possible and don’t leave any negative points, people will inevitably find them when they come to see the car in the metal. Talk about any mechanical work done to the car and any notable issues you may have had with it. Buyers will feel much more confident about a car if you’re open and upfront about it, so make that clear in the description.

7. What documents should I have together?

Much like the listing description, it’s best to have as much information about the car’s history as possible when meeting a potential buyer for the first time. Receipts for mechanical work, MOT sheets, and service manuals can all help show that you’ve taken care of your car. Have it all prepared in a folder so it’s simple and easy to find.

8. Do I have to accompany a buyer on a test drive?

Chances are a buyer will want to take your car for a test drive, but it’s important that you go with them when you do. In order to stay Covid safe, it’s good to make sure you’ve cleaned all major contact points in the car and drive with the windows ajar to help with ventilation. Make sure the buyer also has the appropriate insurance to drive your vehicle.

9. How do I accept payment?

If the buyer offers you a certain amount and you are happy with it, there are several ways to proceed with the payment. Remember that if you don’t want to accept the offer, you are completely free to walk away, so don’t feel pressured to sell.

If you’re satisfied, take the time to think carefully about the payment process (scams can happen). You can accept cash for a vehicle, but it may be worth handing it over to a bank so that it can be transferred to your account quickly. Don’t be tempted to accept a check; as these take a few days to disappear, so it is a more risky method. A bank transfer is one of the most secure methods, and PayPal is also an option. But remember, don’t hand over the keys until you’re sure the new funds have reached your account.

10. Do I need to transfer ownership once I have sold my car?

Yes. Thanks to the DVLA’s online service, this process is quite simplified. Make sure you give the new owner the V5C/2 section of your V5C form to give them proof of ownership for the immediate period, then you can tell the DVLA online that you have sold the car.

Ownership will transfer and the new owner will automatically receive their updated V5C in the mail. You will also be transferred any tax that has not yet been used. You can always do this by post too, by filling in the details of the new holder on your V5C, signing the declaration with the buyer and sending it to the DVLA. This method will take a little longer than going online.

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