4 Things to Know when Selling a Used Car Privately

Before you begin selling a used car, inform yourself about the process. The more informed you are, the more you'll be able to make the right decisions that will yield you the most profits. You also want to protect yourself legally by filling out basic paperwork. To avoid future hassles, you should know these four things when selling a used car privately.

Paperwork Is Required

Once you receive payment for the car, you're required by state law to fill out some paperwork. The exact paperwork depends on your state, so contact your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to find out what's required.

Otherwise, if the new owner gets in a wreck, you could be held liable if there's no evidence that you transferred car ownership. One example of the paperwork that the DMV may require is a bill of sale. You can find blank ones online, but make sure it includes all the information required by your state.

You May Not Get What You Ask For

On the rare occasion, if the deal is too sweet for buyers to resist, you'll get your full asking price. More often than not, and especially in an economic recession, buyers will offer several hundred dollars less than what you're asking. Knowing this, you should pad your asking price just a little, while staying competitive and fair. What you'll actually get when selling a used car will depend on how well you've maintained the car.

Kelly Blue Book Is the Standard

You should know what the car is worth in the first place in order to determine your asking price. The most visited site to find out this information is www.kbb.com. This is one of the first websites you should visit when selling a used car. It will tell you the value of the car based on its condition, and how much you can sell it for to a private buyer.

Potential buyers may have looked at the site as well, to get an idea of what to offer.

Paid Ads May Not Work

You could end up wasting a lot of money on classified newspaper ads with no results. That money could be better spent on making minor repairs, or even paying for a professional car detail to make your car look presentable.

You can advertise for free online, on sites such as www.craigslist.org. Unless yours is a high-end luxury car, try using free methods of advertising first. Even word-of-mouth marketing can work when it comes to selling a used car. Someone in your circle of friends, co-workers and social groups may know of people looking to buy a car.

Cash in your pocket after selling a used car privately often beats trading in the same car for a new vehicle. The trade-in value is much less than what you could get from a private sale. Knowing the four things above will help you to get the most money out of a sale.