How to Sell a Used Car?

How to Sell a Used Car?

How To Sell A Pre-Owned Car: The Most Popular Methods

Selling a pre-owned car is an inevitable scenario for most vehicle owners. When a person faces an imminent overhaul, putting up an automobile for sale is the least expensive option.

There are situations when an old car no longer suits it for comfort and many other characteristics. Then the question of selling is brewing more rapidly. But how to do it quickly and profitably for your budget?

Selling a pre-owned car is challenging today. And some owners believe that it is entirely impossible. If you want to sell a vehicle at the best price, it will take a lot of effort and time. Usually, all intermediaries and sites offering urgent buybacks reduce the cost by 20-30% of the market average. Therefore, if there is at least a small margin of time, the best option would be self-sale.

What affects the price of a car

The following criteria influence the final cost:

  • Model and year of manufacture. You should find out the average price for this year's model and start from it. The newer the car, the higher the price.
  • The average mileage per year is 10-15 thousand kilometers. You can add up the price if you are selling a ten-year-old automobile with less than 100,000 kilometers of mileage. For high mileage, be prepared to make a discount.
  • The more options a car has, the more expensive it is. Of course, provided that all the bells and whistles work correctly.
  • Sometimes tuning has an influence on the price. Nevertheless, the money invested in installing an audio system, fenders, and body kit is unlikely to be returned.
  • Manufacturer country. If a car was produced at several factories and a specific assembly is valued more, this is another reason to increase the price.
  • Engine displacement and transmission. The larger the volume, the more expensive the car. The exception is more successful motor options, which are valued higher.
  • The number of owners. If the car was in the same hands, there is a chance to sell it for more.
  • A service book. This information will help to prove that the vehicle has always been serviced promptly. It is an excellent reason to ask for a little more money.
  • Body condition. It is an important criterion that directly affects the price. If everything is perfect, you can safely set the price higher.
  • Engine operation. If there are any problems, it is better to talk about them right away and lower the cost. Some troubles with the engine are unlikely to be hidden.
  • Interior condition. The interior is the first thing that people pay attention to. A well-groomed cabin is a great reason to bargain for a high price.
  • Suspension state. The person can't hide defects here. So, if there are any drawbacks, it is better not to be silent about them and give a small discount.
  • Wheels and tires. Good alloy wheels not only make a car more attractive but also raise its price.
  • Operating and storage conditions. An automobile that is carefully used and well preserved will cost more.

Sell a pre-owned car as soon as possible

If you want to sell your vehicle, you have two options: pass it out to individuals or dealers. Personal selling usually brings in more money but is based on trust. You can only do business with each other if both parties trust each other.

Make a deal with a relative or friend

The most profitable and less troublesome option is a personal car sale to your relatives or friends in your city. More than 90 percent of owners sell their automobiles privately because they get more money. Whether with friends, family, or acquaintances: when selling an automobile privately, it is advisable to conclude a written contract. Because it offers you and the buyer safety and regulates everything related to the sale of your vehicle.

Trade-in with a local dealer

Trade-in works in conjunction with the new car sales department. That is, the uninteresting purchase price of your automobile is offset by a discount on a new one. It means that you, as a seller, in most cases do not lose anything. Nevertheless, you do not gain. Everything here will depend on whether you need a new car and what kind of discount it will offer. There is a chance that the dealer agrees to give you a new vehicle at a deal and without any trade-ins. In this case, it is not profitable to take the car to the dealer center again.

Selling online

One of the most attractive options is selling a car through online platforms with used vehicles. The owner needs to create an account, add photos, specifications, and contact details. This option is not complicated. You can go to the website, press the "add announcement" button and follow the instructions.

Car preparation

First, you should take care of the exterior and interior of the vehicle. It depends on these parameters how quickly you find a buyer and what the final price will be. It is much more profitable to spend a little on eliminating apparent defects than later reducing the inspection price.

You should better do the following:

  • Wash your car. You can do it yourself, but it's better to go to a particular station.
  • Wash the engine. It is better a few weeks before the sale so that it has time to get dusty and does not arouse suspicion among buyers with its brilliance.
  • Refinish the body. It is especially true for dark-colored cars, on which micro-scratches are visible.
  • Clean up the salon. Wipe down dust, polish the dashboard, vacuum the seats, wash the rugs, remove everything unnecessary from the glove compartment, clean the ashtray.
  • Organize your trunk. Vacuum, remove all trash, hang up a freshener.
  • Eliminate striking faults: burned-out turn signal lamps or knocking on the suspension.

Organize all the necessary documents

Collecting a folder with all the necessary documents and technical inspection passes is essential. It is also required to keep the history of vehicle repairs. When selling a car, service history is a valuable addition to the vehicle itself, and a knowledgeable buyer will certainly appreciate the availability of such documents.

Make good photos for the site

In addition to a good description, you need to take high-quality photos. They are even more important than the text because the buyer sees them first of all, and it depends on their attractiveness whether a person opens your ad or scrolls further.

Shoot the car from all sides, choosing the most successful angle, take a couple of close-ups on the wheel arches and sills, and pay attention to the engine compartment and trunk. In the cabin, you need to shoot the general plan, the dashboard, the rear seats, and the ceiling.

If the car has not been on sale for a long time, try to update the description more often and re-publish the ad with new photos to attract the attention of buyers. In this case, all images must be fresh and must necessarily correspond to the season. If it is summer outside, you shouldn't publish photos that show snow, no matter how beautiful they are.

Create an ad on the sales site

After assessing the condition, identifying all the strengths and weaknesses of the car, and after beautiful photos have been taken, you can start drawing up an ad. It should be noted in the advertisement:

  • Basic information: model, body type, year of manufacture, color, engine size, transmission type, mileage. In ads on sites, all this is selected from a ready-made form.
  • Indicate all additional equipment options (leather interior, climate control, power mirrors, heated seats, audio preparation, airbags).
  • Replaced parts. List of works and replaced units over the past year or two. Include everything except consumables. If the vehicle is less than three years old, it is better to skip this point.
  • Bonuses and gifts: a set of tires, rugs, tools. Describe everything that goes with the car in the bargain.
  • Price and contacts. Be sure to indicate the hours in which you are available and write if bargaining is appropriate.


The pre-owned car market is overcrowded, so today, selling your iron horse quickly and profitably is like winning the lottery. But like every gambling game has its system that increases the chance of winning, so there are tricks in the sale of a used car that will allow you to pass out your four-wheeled friend faster and more expensively.

Moreover, remember that it is impossible to sell a pre-owned car without additional investments in it. Essential advice for sellers of used vehicles: try to see and evaluate it from the point of view of a potential buyer. Pre-sale preparation will help raise the value of your iron horse and speed up the deal.