While the guidelines for selling a used car are generally the same no matter how much your vehicle is worth, you can expect subtle differences for some vehicles—especially those priced inexpensively.
To get the most profit possible, use these tips to prepare for the challenges that may come your way. Tips for Selling Inexpensive Vehicles
Whether your vehicle is high in mileage or built in the previous decade, you'll have to make a few unique decisions before you place your advertisement.
Here's what you should consider.
Setting the Price
Like any other car, you'll need to determine exactly how much your vehicle is worth. This can be done by using a pricing guide and by researching comparable vehicles for sale in your area.
This amount, however, isn't what you should use as a starting price. Most cheap vehicles with high mileage or years of wear will attract buyers looking for a good deal, so expect to negotiate. For example: If you're vehicle is worth $1,000, try pricing it at $1,400 to give yourself a little wiggle room with potential buyers.
If you've determined that your vehicle is worth a low resale value—say, less than $3,000— you'll have to decide whether or not repairs will increase the selling price enough to make it worth the additional investment.
It is likely that a car needing major repairs will take longer to sell. Fixing these first could speed along the process. However, if the cost to make these repairs is more than half the vehicle's worth, you may be better off selling the vehicle for parts instead.
On the other hand, if repairs are less than half the value, making these repairs and providing maintenance receipts to buyers could provide reassurance that the vehicle is working properly and increase the vehicle's overall worth.
There are plenty of good websites to advertise your vehicle online. While options such as Autotrader and Kelley Blue Book will attract thousands of potential buyers, these websites aren't free.
If, for example, you're selling a vehicle and only expect to get $500, spending $50 or more on advertising costs will significantly cut into your profits. In addition, most major sites also charge for each picture you post—which can increase costs even further.
For really inexpensive vehicles, Craigslist is one good alternative. Since it's a “for sale by owner" site, you don't have to pay for advertisements. Another option—especially if you choose a paid classified website that charges per photo—is to use a website like Flickr or YouTube. This will allow you to link to additional pictures or even a video in your advertisement without incurring additional charges.