When it comes time to sell you car there are several options for how to go about the sale. You can take your car into a dealership and use it for a trade-in. Some prefer to sell their car directly by private party. Whichever way you choose, it is in your best interest to do just a few small things so that you can get top dollar for your car when you sell.
Many people dread the whole process of selling or buying a car. It seems sometimes that dealerships have taken a simple transaction and complicated it to the point of pain! The other consideration is that many of us simply don’t see ourselves as “sales” people, so instead of presenting our car for sale in the best light, we mumble through the process and end up getting a lot less than the real value of the car. By doing a little bit of homework and a little bit of prep work on the vehicle that you plan to sell, you can take some of the guesswork out of the sale, giving you an edge in the negotiations.
One of the first things that you should do is assess, and realistically appraise your cars condition. That hamburger wrapper in the back seat may not bug you too much; however, when a prospective buyer comes to look at the car you can be sure that they will notice it. The impression that you give is that if you have not been willing to keep the interior of the car clutter-free, then how well have you taken care of the routine maintenance?
The last thing that you want to do is start out your price negotiations with the buyer thinking that you haven’t taken proper care of the vehicle. That puts you at a sell my car for cash today disadvantage during negotiations. You always want to present the car you are selling in the best manner so that you not only put your buyer at ease, but can then feel confident to request top dollar for your car.
A good suggestion is to take your car out for a sample test drive. Pretend that you are the buyer and as you are driving, try to notice things that your potential buyer will certainly notice. This may be difficult to do if you are comfortable with your car. After all, you have been living just fine with that little rattle from the loose speaker cover, but a new driver will definitely notice it…and be motivated to mentally deduct dollars from the perceived value of your car.
You may want to take a trusted friend on a spin. Ask them to be brutally honest, and be ready to listen to their observations without getting offended. After all, their comment about that “certain smell” in your car could allow you to provide an inexpensive fix that will earn you several hundred more dollars.
Have you smoked in your car? Work to get rid of the nicotine stains on the vinyl and eliminate the residual smell. Empty the ash trays and clean them thoroughly. You can sprinkle baking soda on the floor and seat, allow it to absorb the tar and surrounding moisture for 24 hours, then vacuum it up. For hard surfaces, try a mixture of warm water and vinegar. The vinegar cuts through the tar and resins that cause the cigarette smell. If this does not seem to work, you can try a mixture of 1 gallon warm water, ½ cup ammonia, ¼ cup vinegar and ¼ cup washing soda. After you have washed all the non-fabric surfaces thoroughly, allow the car to air out. A fresh breeze can do wonders! There are some buyers that will not purchase a car that has been smoked in – don’t let your car be one of them.