Selling Your Car

Selling Your Car

If you plan on selling your car, there are various ways you should consider so that you can get the best price for your vehicle. The main methods focus on trading in your car, selling it yourself, or getting an instant cash offer. Here, we'll go over essential details about selling your vehicle, including where to start, prepare, and close the sale.

Different Ways to Sell Your Car

When you're looking to sell your car, there are three main ways to go about it. You can trade the vehicle at a dealership, sell it yourself, or get an instant cash offer from companies like Kelley Blue Book.

Trading In Your Car

The first method you can consider is trading in your car. You can sell your used vehicle to a dealership to get a lower price on a new car. Essentially, the dealership will subtract the assigned value from the cost of your new vehicle.

The best part about trading in your car is not having to worry about selling it. In addition, trading in your vehicle is a more convenient and fast process with no additional costs. It can also potentially reduce the sales tax on your new vehicle. But, ultimately, you might not get the best price for your car.

Sell It Yourself

The best part of selling your vehicle is the possibility of getting the best price possible. In addition, you will save money since you won't suffer from a dealer's overhead costs.

However, selling the vehicle yourself does require more work on your part. You'll be responsible for advertising, negotiating prices, and meeting with potential buyers. So, while it is usually more profitable, it does require more work.

Instant Cash Offers

Companies like Kelley Blue Book or CarMax can grant car sellers instant cash offers. So, rather than trading your car to a dealership, you'll sell it to the company and immediately receive cash. However, like a dealership, you won't receive the best price, especially since it's a cash offer. But, again, you won't have to go through the hassle of selling the car yourself.

Preparing to Sell

  1. Organizing documents. The first step when selling your vehicle is gathering all the essential documents. Typically, this includes your car title, service records, original sales paperwork, and a vehicle history report in case your car was in any accidents.
  2. Make necessary repairs. If you want the best price on your car, make sure you complete any necessary repairs. Even the most minor things, like a cracked windshield, can reduce your sales price. So, ensure you're maintaining and repairing your car when needed.
  3. Cleaning your vehicle. No one wants to purchase a dirty car. It's best to either thoroughly clean your car yourself or take it in for a detail and wash.
  4. Getting an inspection. Make sure to have your vehicle checked thoroughly. Your car might need new brakes or tires if your current ones are worn.
  5. Pricing your vehicle. Before you put your car on the market, you'll need to determine its value. Unfortunately, people tend to overestimate the worth of their vehicle, so it's best to try the following ways to determine the price:

    • Hire a mechanic to assess the value of your vehicle. They'll evaluate all features, which includes anything from the engine to the tail lights.
    • Check out online valuation tools. Websites like Kelley Blue Book will provide you with ways to receive an estimate on your vehicle.
    • Check out the local listings. You might already have similar vehicles on the market, so this method will help determine your listing price.

Closing the Sale

You should take several steps to ensure a safe and legitimate transaction. For example, try meeting the individual in a public place while using legitimate forms of payment.

Typically, you'll need to provide documentation that shows your sale to the buyer. The documentation will usually involve a title transfer, bill of sale, and release of liability, along with removing and turning your plates in.


If you're trying to sell your car, look at your situation and assess every option. For example, if you're moving to a city that doesn't require a vehicle, an instant cash offer or selling it yourself might be best for you.

On the other hand, if you're looking to upgrade your car to a newer model, then trading it in might be best. However, whichever way you go, ensure you're diligent and that the option works for you. Remember not to be too disappointed if you can't reach your best sales price.