Looking to Sell Your Vehicle? Here Are Five Tips to Earn More Money

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Due to many obvious factors, used vehicles are currently far more popular than new ones. If you’re looking to sell yours and earn top dollar, these simple steps are guaranteed to raise its value.
There are countless reasons why a good used vehicle is a better deal than a new one, and there are a lot more to choose from. In the U.S., some estimates indicate that the used car market is at least three times larger than that of new ones.

Understand its market value

If you’re selling, you need to understand the car's market value and decide how much it’s worth investing in it. Look for models with comparable mileage that seem in excellent condition to get an idea about what you can demand.

Buyers are only willing to spend above the average market value of the vehicle they’re looking for is in great condition, so investing some money before you sell it will get you more in return.

Of course, this applies to popular models, especially those with a reputation for reliability. If you’re trying to sell a beat-up Pontiac Aztek, just take what you get and thank God for ridding you of it.

Perform a pre-sale inspection

Nissan Altima
Photo: Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.

Few buyers expect a used vehicle to be in perfect condition, but the decisive factor is the mechanical state because no one wants to buy one that doesn’t run properly.

Before you make any unnecessary investments, take it to a good mechanic for a pre-sale inspection. Most buyers will require one anyway, so it’s always a good idea to eliminate any hidden issues from the start. Regardless of what the workshop finds, ask for a detailed report that you can show to potential buyers.

Fix any mechanical issues

Once you have an idea about the issues, fix anything critical. Buyers will pay close attention to safety and comfort, so visible parts like brake rotors, tires, or shocks need to be in good condition. It’s also a good idea to change its filters and oil before you sell it so that it runs smoothly.

Once again, make sure the mechanic issues a detailed report with all the repairs and/or replacements—the more papers which document the vehicle's maintenance, the better.

Make sure it looks great

Ford Escape
Photo: Ford Motor Co
Aesthetics also play an important role in the buying process. Some people won’t even get into mechanical details if they see a dirty car and will assume that it’s poorly maintained.

Take it to a professional car wash or even a detailer if its market value is high. Also, things that catch the eye, like a new set of floor mats or seat covers, are always a good investment.

Prepare the paperwork

You should have all reports and invoices that back up the vehicle's maintenance history, and keep in mind that a full history of any vehicle can now be ordered online with a few easy clicks.

So, if you made sure the car looks good, functions properly, and has the paperwork to prove that, you have the upper hand.

Showing a potential buyer a full-service history and a pre-sale inspection report will most likely persuade him to pay the asking price without further negotiations.
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About the author: Vlad Radu
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Vlad's first car was custom coach built: an exotic he made out of wood, cardboard and a borrowed steering wheel at the age of five. Combining his previous experience in writing and car dealership years, his articles focus in depth on special cars of past and present times.
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