There are two options when selling a car: you can sell the vehicle privately, or you can sell it to a dealership.

Selling a Vehicle Privately

Selling a vehicle privately generally means a larger profit, and gives you a bit more room to set your price. There are several things you can do to spruce up your car beforehand in order to get the most out of your sale.

Here are five steps you can take to be prepared and safe so you can sell your car yourself:

  • Make minor repairs – Fix what you can without going overboard. Small repairs, such as filling chips in a windshield, defogging headlights, buffing out scratches, and repairing minor dents, will go a long way toward boosting the price you can get for your car.
  • Clean the car – Make sure to tend to both the inside and outside of the vehicle. Paying to have the car detailed is a quick and easy way to ensure your car looks extra clean. You can save a bit of money doing it yourself, just make sure you’re very thorough – wash and wax your car, vacuum and dust the interior, clean the windows, and remove any leftover odors.
  • Get an estimated value – There are several valuation sites available online such as that can give you an approximate value for your vehicle. To get the most accurate value, you might consider a pre-sale inspection to give you the true condition of the car.
  • Prepare your paperwork – The responsibility of selling a vehicle comes with plenty of forms to sign. You should also have all the necessary documentation of the car’s history prepared for your buyer. Make sure you have the title, your maintenance records, owner’s manual, any warranty documents or as-is documentation, a bill of sale, and a release of liability form. Having the proper paperwork together helps ensure a smooth, and safe, sales process.
  • Protect your personal data – Remove all your personal data from your vehicle’s infotainment system before you put a for sale sign in the window. Don’t forget to unpair any Bluetooth devices from the vehicle. Also, make sure that any personal information in your maintenance records, such as credit card information, is blacked out.

5 Tips to Get the Most For Your CarRemember, how the private sale of your vehicle goes is largely up to you. There are many options available these days to advertise a car, and there’s a lot of competition out there. Take plenty of pictures from all angles, including the interior and the engine compartment. Documenting with photos can help you sell, as well as establish a record of your vehicle’s condition.

You also need to make sure that you and your personal information stay safe even after you’ve sold your car. Always screen your buyers by phone when possible, only meet in public areas you’ve chosen, and have a friend or family member go with you on any meet ups.

Selling to a Dealership

The process for selling a vehicle to a dealership is essentially the same. You should prepare your car the same as you would for a private sale. The major difference is that you’ll have to bring your vehicle down to the dealership, and you may find it tougher to get your full asking price. Because you’ll want the most money you can get, it’s a good idea to visit a few dealers to get quotes. This way, you can choose the dealer who gives you the best price.

Seek Experience when it’s Time to Buy

Now that you know how to get the most out of your sale, make sure you do the right thing when it’s time for you to buy, too. Here at Auto Credit Express, our nearly 20 years of experience can be put to work for you when you need to find your next car loan, even if your credit is less than perfect.

We work with a nationwide network of special finance dealers that work with lending resources that can help credit-challenged people get the auto financing they need. There’s never any cost or obligation to buy when you use our service. Simply fill out our online auto loan request form, and we’ll work to find you a local dealer that’s right for your situation.