Today the used car market is booming. Many people are still strapped for cash after the economic crash of the last few years, and the increasing cost of living. Used cars are a viable way for many of us to upgrade our current vehicle to a better one for a fraction of the price. In fact, reports have shown that every year, used car sales outnumber new purchases by around three to one. As well as buying used cars, more people are getting involved in selling them – either through a dealership or privately themselves. You might need to get rid of your car for whatever reason but know that it’s not quite ready to hit the scrap heap just yet. In this case, why not consider selling it as a used car? You can still make a good amount of money providing that your car is in a good condition, and you can be confident that it is going to a good home. So just how should you go about selling your used car, and what can you do to ensure you get the best price possible for it?
Make sure it’s safe to sell
Before you even think about placing an ad or contacting any local car dealerships, you need to make sure that your vehicle is in tip-top condition. No one wants to buy a used car that is only going to cost even more money to repair. So with that in mind, you need to make sure that everything works as it should, and also that the car looks good. One of the first things people look for when searching for a used car to buy is whether the car has had its MOT. Generally speaking, a new MOT is only really needed when selling if you have less than 3 months on the current one. But to be honest, it can be worth you getting a MOT anyway no matter how much time you have left. This says a lot about the car’s basic condition and can put a buyer’s mind at ease, making them more likely to put in an offer. If your vehicle has a serious defect that you are fully aware of, make sure you get this sorted before you put in on the market. Selling a car with a mechanical fault is not only illegal, it can also be extremely dangerous for the new owner too. Check the tyre treads – do they meet the national standard of 1.6mm across the width? Also, make sure your car comes with a spare tyre and make sure all of them are inflated. Other basic things such as checking the oil, coolant and brake fluid levels are all intact will save you a lot of hassle when it comes to selling.
Get it looking as good as new
As well as sprucing up the inner workings of the car, it is definitely worth giving the exterior a bit of TLC. First impressions are what matters most, and most buyers are going to be immediately turned off if your car is full of dents, scratches and a messy interior. Therefore it is definitely worth your while to spend a bit of time beautifying your car. Dents are the easiest way to put off a buyer as it makes the car look unkempt and unloved. They can be quite difficult to repair on your own, so consider taking your vehicle to a professional. You can now also remove dents and dings without a body shop thanks to new advances in these kinds of services. It is also important to fix any scratches on your car, as these can severely devalue it and can also lead to rust if left untreated. Home repair kits can be sufficient if your scratches are only minor, but more serious ones will need the attention of a professional. The inside of your car is also a vital part of your selling process. If you’re one of those people who lives in their car, with food wrappers and various items littering the inside, you’ll need to be prepared for some hard work! The interior will need a deep clean, and that includes removing all the rubbish, hoovering the mats and wiping the dashboard. Also, consider using a car-friendly air freshener to give your car that ‘brand new’ smell. If you are too busy to do a full deep clean yourself, consider paying for a valet service where this can be done for you.
Decide how you are going to sell it
Selling privately is what is going to get you the best value for your car. However, it is the method that requires the most work, as you will need to market your car all on your own and be responsible for all your paperwork. If you choose to go ahead with selling privately, you need to decide where you are going to advertise it. The classified ad section in local newspapers is still a reliable way to sell a car. Just make sure that you word your ad carefully and include relevant information. Or, you could put a sign up in your local shops. Gumtree, Autotrader and even social media are also platforms through which you can get your car sold. However, you will need to be prepared to give up your time to help with viewings, test drives and a lot of questions. Or, you may choose to sell your car to a local dealer. Selling it outright is a quick and easy process, which is why it is attractive to so many people. However, it won’t get you the best price possible for your vehicle, as it will be based on the car’s trade value and condition. A common way that many people sell their cars is by part exchanging with a dealership. You’ll still get less for it than a private sale, but you avoid all the hassle of marketing your car and you walk away with a new one of your own, too. Whatever you choose to do, selling your car doesn’t need to be difficult – you just need to know what you’re doing before you jump into anything.