The best way to sell a car by owner consists of various important steps that the seller must follow in order to get a good price for his used car. Nowadays there are plenty of ways to sell any type of product which makes it easier for most of us to get rid of cars and get a good price for it, depending on make and model. In order to attract more potential customers you need to advertise the car, without marketing it, the likelihood of getting a decent price for it is low, unless your neighbor buys it.
The first method you should think of is to put the car in a classified online advertisement. In 2011, the most common location to advertise basically anything that you are selling is on the Internet as the exposure is great. The most popular website where you can buy or sell cars is of course eBay. After inserting it here first, there are other websites where the car should be listed, like CarSoup, Cars, Craiglist and Edmunds. Of course, these aren’t the only websites on the entire Internet, but these should be a top priority.
A classic way of advertising your car is by doing a classified advertisement in print. Although the Internet is considered by many as the fastest method of selling anything nowadays, the potential of classified advertisements is still huge. The newspaper is probably the most efficient way to choose as these classifieds will show cars that are for sale in a specific area. You should know that there are classified listings for cars in print in trader publications as well as the free local shoppers who are largely advertisement only. You need to figure out what type of audience does these publications have. If you are lucky enough, you might be able to sell your car through these classifieds.
The old-fashioned way of advertising a car sale will never die. We are talking about placing a sign in the car, simple yet very effective, even in today’s world dominated by the Internet. Place a “for sale” sign in the window and write down a phone number where you can be contacted. If you want, also put down in writing the most important specifications of the car. Some people choose to park their cars where they can get more exposure. Be careful if you do this as there are many police officers that are on the look for such cars and you will end up with a fine.
The best way to sell a car by owner also consists of actions that should be taken which aren’t related to advertising or marketing. First and foremost, the owner of the car should take the car to a mechanic and have it inspected thoroughly. There are three reasons for this: first, you might find out that there are a many things that should be fixed, meaning that the car is not worth the money you estimated. Second of all, the potential buyer will most likely want to do a check up of the car so if you present him all the things that are wrong with the car, you will both save time and money plus he will appreciate your honesty. Last, if he insists on taking the car to his personal mechanic, the latter might come up with a different list of repairs, which could transform into your benefit during the crucial negotiation hours.
To increase the value of your car, you might consider getting it detailed to make it look more attractive to the potential buyers. Although you will spend about $100, you will get back that money after you sell it. It goes without saying that the car should be washed and cleaned thoroughly in order to give it an appealing look.
To sum up all the preparations necessary before putting the car up for sale, here is a comprehensive checklist: get the car inspected, dust all surfaces, vaccum, empty ashtrays, clean trunk and glove box, clean storage compartments, wash floormats, spot-clean upholstery, wash windows inside and out, polish chrome (if available), wash tire sidewalls, wax exterior, wipe engine with degreaser, check the oil (it is advisable to replace it), check the coolants (again, it would be wise to replace it), check the transmission, brake and power-steering fluids, gather as many service receipts and records as you can, obtain the title of the car or find out how much is still owed on loan and finally, place ads.
If you don’t know what price you should ask for the car, check eBay, newspaper classifieds and other location where cars like the one you have are being sold. Some people choose to trade-in their vehicles as they avoid these entire steps. Although they can get rid of the car faster, they in most cases lose about $1,500 which is a significant amount of money for most of us.
When dealing with the potential buyer, it would be polite to invite them to take a test drive of the car. Also, when thinking about a starting price, try not to exaggerate as you might not get the desired feedback. Set yourself a minimum price from which you will not go under and do a little bit of negotiation to give the buyer the feeling that he is saving a lot of money.
As you can see, the best way to sell a car by owner is not to be considered as a simple and magical way of getting lots of money for the product listed. It takes a couple of days of preparation and even a small money investment in order to get a good price for it. It is highly advisable to advertise the car through as many sale channels as you can as the more exposure the car gets, the more chances of selling it you will have, probably for a better price, depending on the car you want to sell.
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