One thing that sticks with you from being in the Cub Scouts as a young boy is their motto: be prepared. It will hold you in good stead throughout your life, but is a particularly useful attribute to have when it comes to selling your car. The dawning realisation of just how much work is required to sell your car privately can be enough to leave you hiding under your bed. But, if you go in knowing what needs to be done then you can really make life far easier for yourself and instead of earning a badge to go on the arm of your shirt you’ll be rewarded with cash in your bank. Selling your car privately is a great way to make some quick cash as long as you fully prepare to sell your car, but make sure you do not do any of the following:
Don’t sell a car in a mess
If you were going for a high-flying job you wouldn’t dress in messy attire and the same is true of when trying to flog a second hand car; it must look its best. Consider the art of selling your car in the same way you would a house: in its best possible state of repair. Ensure that the car looks up to scratch by having it as tidy and clean as it can, so it looks in showroom condition; this costs nothing and can make your car far more attractive to buyers. Touch up any obvious dents or scratches on the bodywork of the car that may put off a potential buyer.
Ignore, tamper-with or destroy documentation
A car’s documentation is akin to its passport and gives light to its history, so you must have it available and never attempt to amend it. If possible, always have the service history fully up-to-date and stamped as this in invaluable to a buyer and can add value to your car. For cars more than three years-old you require an MOT certificate to prove its’ roadworthiness; it would be wise to have a recent MOT to highlight its reliability to the buyer. Remember, you need to notify the DVLA once a deal is complete, so fill out the V5C new owner details document and sign along with your buyer before sending back to the DVLA; give the V5C/2 to the buyer as proof of ownership until the DVLA sends out a new V5C.
Avoid falsely advertising your car
This is the biggest mistake private sellers make when advertising their vehicle for sale. By embellishing your car’s condition you will not only put off suitors, but will also be liable for legal recourse from the buyer. Attempt to be as accurate in a description of your car as possible and if it is only fit for scrap, used as spares or needs comprehensive repair then it is best to admit to it upfront. By being honest and accurate on your advert you are likely to only attract suitable buyers rather than a raft of time wasters; explain adequately the age, condition and location of your car so that buyers know exactly what and where they are coming to view.
Selling your car should hold no fear, but if you go about it the wrong way it can throw up many potential issues. If you still have worries about selling your car privately then you can always choose a car buying service like wewantanycar and leave all the hassle for somebody else to cope with.
Content by Sophie Carvana.