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The steps to selling your car: Private sale

30 August 2018

Deciding to sell your car can be a big decision, but deciding how to sell your car can be even harder.

Opting to sell your car via a private sale can bring in more money for you than trading it in through a dealership, but there are a few extra steps to the process.

It’s important to weigh up the options and decide what method of selling is best for you and if the extra money is worth the extra effort.

Steps to selling a car privately

Private sale pro: Usually results in a higher selling price.

Private sale con: Potentially a slower and more complicated process than trading in.


Step 1. Get organised

If your car service book has not been updated or or you don’t have one, visit your mechanic who should have the car’s history on record.

Step 2. Make repairs

To obtain a roadworthy certificate, you may have to make repairs to your car.

Step 3. Clean and polish

Getting your car detailed can help give a great first impression and increase the car’s value.

Interior car cleaning 101

Step 4. Advertise your car

You can advertise in a few ways: online ads, classifieds or put a ‘For Sale’ sign in the window.

Step 5. Managing queries

Keep your phone nearby and car fueled up as potential buyers call to organise inspections and test drives.

Step 6. The sales pitch

Prepare a casual sales pitch including the important features and story of your car.

Step 7. Test drive

Be polite, but firm. Ask for ID and take a photo of it for your records. Join the prospective buyer if they want to go for a test drive.

What to know before people test drive your car

Step 8. Negotiate

Don’t accept lowball offers, but be realistic based on your car’s mileage, condition and comparable value in the market.

Step 9. Organise payment

Opt for an online transfer of money as it is a safe and an easy option as opposed to cash or cheque.

Step 10. Get ready to handover

Make sure you complete the required insurance and registration changes and remove license plates if they are not part of the sale.

Step 11. Say goodbye

Hold back the tears as you hand over the keys and say goodbye.

The information is intended to be of general nature only. Subject to any rights you may have under any law, we do not accept any legal responsibility for any loss or damage, including loss of business or profits or any other indirect loss, incurred as a result of reliance upon the information. Please make your own enquiries.