Quick And Easy Tips To Note Before Selling Your Car

Posted by on April 14, 2012 | No Comments

Very often when someone decides it’s time to get rid of their car, the plan is to trade it in for a new one. The next logical step would involve the car dealer examining the car – this involves test driving the car, seeing if it is still in working condition, and checking the car’s fair market value. From that, they will give you a price that will be subtracted from the total cost of your new vehicle. Before your car transitions from the old owner (being yourself) to the new one, here are some easy suggestions you can follow to make the process more seamless and properly pass the torch to the would-be owner of your old car.

Preparing Your Car For Sale

Clean your car first of all – tedious as it may seem, you’ll need to get all your cleaning paraphernalia ready and tidy up your car so that you don’t get caught unprepared when a buyer walks in. Take your time to go through the car to clean the windows, the dashboard, a drink holder and any other solid area. While you’re doing this, open all of the windows and air the car out. You may not notice it anymore, but when cars loose that new car scent, they take on other odors.

When preparing the inside of your car, move all seats back and forth, because you’ll never know – there just might be some long lost item or some loose change underneath, or some trash that needs to be disposed of. Don’t forget the trunk. Sometimes, under the floor mat, there are hidden compartments that hold a spare tire or other tools. You never know what gets lost there over the years.

Start off the washing with a good ol’ fashioned hose-down. You could make your car look brand new by giving it a nice shine. Don’t forget to pay special attention to the hubcaps and the headlights. Hubcaps are like a magnet to grime. You don’t need any special equipment – just liquid soap and a soft brush. Also pay attention to the headlights. If you have buyers coming over in the evening, you’ll want to do a demonstration for your headlights to make sure they’re still working properly.

Judge Your Car’s Value

You can either see your car as a priceless beauty or a cheap jalopy that you can’t wait to get rid of. But there are listings that will provide you with the actual fair market value of the make and model of your car. You can go online and do a search for ‘car value’, or ‘what’s my car worth.’

If you still need some help on this, you just need to be familiar with the make (i.e. Chevrolet), the model or style (i.e. Corvette) and the year it was made (i.e. 1978). Now let us say you are selling a Dodge Challenger R/T – you will need to specify the special edition, the “R/T” in the name of the car, and you will often find this at the back or side of the car. Popular special editions include “LE” (limited edition) and “DL” (deluxe). Print out all the information once you have gathered all the data. Documentation will be very necessary when it comes to the negotiation process.

List the Car

There are a number of places that you can advertise a car for sale. You can go old-school if you town still has a local newspaper and advertise your car there. This is still the best way to attract buyers from your location, despite the fact that ad rates are up due to the recession.

Other places to consider are church bulletin boards, newsletters, or other associations to which you belong. Some of these methods do not cost a thing, but most would require a small charge to include your ad in their newsletter, magazine or website. You can use word of mouth as a powerful tool, with your friends and family spreading the good word for you. Be honest and upfront, and show transparency when it comes to the car’s quality. You could lose friendships or business contacts due to a glitch or flaw you failed to mention – no matter how small it is. Finally, there are social networking sites and bulletin boards online where you can do the advertising.

Putting On The Finishing Touches

Now that you have a buyer, you will need to negotiate the price. Try asking for a value slightly higher than your expected price. Mention your payment options before hand. Unless the buyer is a good friend of yours or a family member, cash is king. If that’s not possible, another option is a money order. Don’t prioritize personal checks, due to their potential of bouncing. To complete the torch-passing process, you need to transfer your car’s title. Check with your local auto tags office for details. They will have the papers and can file it with the state department of motor vehicles for a fee. Oh, we forgot – declare the car’s sale in your upcoming tax returns this coming April!

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