Learn How to Sell Your Car and Get the Most for It

Contact Potential Buyers

If you’re selling your automobile to a dealership, you’ve probably received a few bids from the various dealers you’ve contacted. Examine your options and select the best one. Contact the buyer to finalize the transaction.


In the case of private-party sales, this step entails screening calls and meeting with potential purchasers. Respond to phone calls and emails as soon as possible. Make sure you obtain complete contact information, such as name, email address, and phone number. Don’t be scared to move on to the next candidate if something seems suspect or if you get the impression that a buyer isn’t serious.

Schedule a Test Drive

You’ll need to schedule test drives with prospective purchasers when selling privately. Meet throughout the day at a public place, such as a mall parking lot, in a well-trafficked area. There is strength in numbers, so if possible, bring a friend or family member with you.

Take part in the test drive. This allows you to keep a constant watch on the car. In addition, an out-of-town buyer may be unfamiliar with the location, so traveling in the passenger seat allows you to provide navigation aid. Keep small talk to a minimum so that they can concentrate on how the car drives.


This isn’t going to happen the way it does on TV. Don’t rush the process, and try to figure out how much the prospective buyer is willing to pay for your car. Be as firm as you can with the pricing while keeping open to a decent offer. A final offer may require several rounds of back-and-forth. Make your decision to sell or not based on that. Request that payment be made in cash, cashier’s check, or a mix of the two. Before giving over the keys, get the cashier’s check verified at your bank.


Complete the Transaction

If you’re selling to a dealership, the final step is to have the vehicle inspected, receive paid, and sign the proper papers. A brick-and-mortar dealership will normally want you to drive the vehicle to their location; however, a handful will be willing to pick it up from your home or workplace. Online dealers will dispatch a representative to inspect and collect the vehicle.

If you still owe money on your automobile loan and intend to use the sale profits to pay off the debt, you must complete this step at the lender’s office that retains the lien on the vehicle. In this situation, the buyer may be required to write a check to the lender for the outstanding balance on the loan, as well as a check to you for the balance of the car’s selling price.

After the money has been exchanged, hand over the bill of sale and title to the car’s new owner after making copies of both documents. After that, notify your state’s department of motor vehicles that you’ve sold your car and cancel its auto insurance.