Selling your car on your own will net you greater profit, though it also means expending more effort. Many accept the lower price offered by dealers because it is a convenient means of disposing of the vehicle. There are a few things to keep in mind in order to get the most money you can, and sell it sooner than later. Here are just a few to keep in mind:
Get an Inspection
It is a good idea to have a thorough inspection done by a mechanic so you have a solid idea of the condition the car is in. It will help you determine how much you think you can sell it for, make sure you are letting potential buyers know about any issues, and whether or not there may be certain repairs or necessary replacement parts that may be worth taking care of in order to increase the value of the vehicle, or if you want to sell it as is.
Coming to the table with a thorough inspection report will also work in your favor as it will make you appear more honest and upfront—remember one of the primary reasons people look to private sales is to avoid dishonest car dealers.
If you discover there are more issues than you thought, and the vehicle is a bit older, you may find that it is better to look into salvage yards that buy junk cars or donating it to charity, rather than trying to sell it.
Make It Pretty
Unless you are selling an obviously old and beaten down car, it would behoove you to make the vehicle look as best as it can. Detailing can be a worthwhile investment, and if you have never done it before, you would be amazed at the difference it can make, even in more worn down vehicles. If you can’t afford detailing, or you are a DIY type of person, make sure you have all the proper materials such as glass cleaner, rug cleaner, vinyl cleaner, interior cleaner, chamois cloths and a good vacuum. Presenting a car that looks well-maintained speaks well for you.
No Such Thing as Too Many Pictures
When it comes to putting up pictures in your online ad, you can’t take too many. Just a few shots won’t cut it. Take pictures of everything. Take shots from every angle. Remember it’s a used car and people aren’t expecting it to be perfect. The more people see of it, the more likely it is anyone contacting you is truly interested.
Write a Detailed Ad
Internet ads on sites like Craigslist don’t limit you to a few measly sentences. You can give oodles of detail, and again, the more you tell about the car, the more likely it is anyone contacting you is really interested. Be honest about the condition. Be descriptive, like really descriptive. Avoid generic phrases that really don’t say anything. For example, instead of saying the car was well-maintained, specifically describe what you did to maintain it so well. Talk about how you had the tires rotated like clockwork or religiously changed the oil every 3,000 miles.