Ten Top Tips for a Smooth Sale
- Price your car realistically. This is vital if you want a quick sale.
- Check the prices of similar cars in popular classified ad magazines or online.
- You can't sell a car with outstanding finance.
- This includes outstanding hire-purchase or conditional sale agreements.
- If you do want to sell, get the finance company's permission or settle the finance first.
- Don't make false or reckless claims. Take care how you word your advert.
- Lines like 'First to see will buy' won't convince anyone.
- In adverts, stick to facts that will interest potential buyers.
- Describe the car as accurately as possible.
- Quote the year/number plate, how many months are left on the MOT and where you are based.
- State the condition of the car in adverts and on the receipt.
- If it's being sold for spares only, or it requires substantial repairs, say so.
- Include this information on the receipt once you've agreed to sell.
- Have all documents and history handy.
- Keep receipts for work carried out.
- Have all MOT certificates and service records to hand.
- A fully-stamped dealer service record adds value if you've got one.
- Don't forget to hand over all relevant documents when you sell.
- Check the buyer is insured to test drive the car. Your own insurance may cover you.
- Always go with them.
- Key point Avoid becoming a victim of car theft – if you change seats part way through, take the keys with you and hand them over when you get back in the car.
- Build in a margin for haggling.
- That way the buyer's happy and you still get close to the amount you want.
- Provide a 'Sold as seen, tried and approved without guarantee' receipt.
- Print off and use our Seller's Contract.
- Bear in mind that no wording on the receipt is foolproof.
- Get paid.
- Don't let anyone drive your car away until you're satisfied that you've been paid in full.
- Cash is always the best way to be paid.
- If you are given a personal or building society cheque, wait for it to clear in your bank before you hand the car over.
So you've agreed to sell your car. What should you do before the buyer drives off into the sunset? To protect yourself, draw up a seller's contract. Alternatively, we've drawn one up for you. To get copies of our contract, just follow these steps:
- Select 'Just Good Advice' from the Car Buyer's home page.
- From the 'Your Rights' section, select 'Seller's contract'.
- Print two copies of the contract, one for you and one for your buyer.
- Complete the contracts with your buyer.
- You and your buyer should sign and date the contracts.
- Make sure you each keep a signed copy as proof of the purchase.
It's also important to tell the DVLA that your car has changed hands. After all, you don't want to be landed with any of the new driver's future offences and convictions. Simply follow the instructions on the V5/registration document.
What to do
- Make your used car look great - cleaning your car inside and out can make it easier to sell and get you a better price. Clear any clutter and consider a valet service for a professional finish.
- Have your documents ready. Buyers will want to see your log book (V5) and MOT as well as any receipts, service records and m handbooks.
- Price your car sensibly, an overpriced used car will put potential buyers off. Check online or use a car price guide to gauge the market.
- Decide where to advertise, whether in local classifieds and/or reach a wider market online. List any faults or extras in your advert and answer any questions honestly.
- Get your paperwork in order. Your used car will sell easier if it has a recent MOT and has been serviced. Make sure it is taxed so the buyer can drive away. Get any minor faults fixed before advertising your car.
- Expect to haggle on price but don't accept a price lower than you are happy with. If you're not confident seeing buyers alone, ask a friend to join you.
- Provide a receipt stating your second hand car is "sold as seen" and keep a signed copy for yourself.
- Post the paperwork once the car is sold and make sure the new owner has provided their details and signed the V5 owner's document.
Always accompany prospective buyers on a test drive when selling a used car. Ask if their insurance covers them to drive other cars before they get behind the wheel.
Once you've agreed a deal never hand over your car until you have received payment. Check that any cash payment is genuine and wait for a cheque payment to clear before you part with your keys.