Where Can I Sell My Car for the Most Money?

Grey Classic Car

Estimated reading time: 7 minutes

If you ever need to sell your car, the first question you’re going to ask is, “Where to sell your car for the most money?” 

Currently, both new and used car inventories are at record lows, which means that car prices are at a record high. 

In this guide, we’ll answer the question, “Where to sell your car to get the most money” and provide some useful tips.

There are several ways you can sell your car, each with its benefits and drawbacks. Knowing which is the best option for you can be a challenge. The most obvious option is to sell your car to a private buyer. This tends to be the best choice if you’re wondering who will buy your car for the most money. 

A private buyer tends to be more willing to pay a higher price than a dealer or auction. For you, it works well because there’s no middleman to deal with. On the flip side, you might struggle to find a buyer and wait some time for a sale. 

Another option is to sell your car to a dealer. If you’re in a hurry to sell your car this is probably the best option. A dealer will usually offer to pay less money than a private person, but you could complete the sale in a couple of days.

The third option is to sell your car at auction. This is another excellent choice for someone who wants to sell their car quickly. Auctions tend to attract large numbers of buyers and are often held at short notice. The downside is that you might not get the best price for your car. 

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Understand Your Car’s Value

If you want to sell your car, it’s only natural to want the best price possible. Knowing how much to ask for your car depends on knowing its value. Several factors can affect the price of a car, including the make, model, year, and condition. 

When you want to figure out your car’s value, a good place to start is to determine its wholesale value. This is the price a dealer would pay if they were buying a car from another dealer. There are various car pricing guides you can use for reference, but the best is Kelley Blue Book

With a wholesale value clear in your head, you can move on to assessing its retail value. The retail value is the price a dealer would ask from a customer who wants to buy a car. To work out your car’s retail value, you must take into account its condition, mileage, and features. 

The condition of a car is a key factor in determining its value. A car that’s in excellent condition can command a higher price than one that’s in poor condition. 

Similarly, a car with low mileage will be more valuable than one that’s done hundreds of thousands of miles. 

When it comes to the features, things like power windows, air conditioning, and a top-of-the-range entertainment system can add value to a car. 

Once you’ve got a clear idea of your car’s retail value, you can price it accordingly. However, keep in mind that you might not get the full retail value, particularly if it’s in poor condition.  

Where to sell your car for the most money? The winner is to a private party

No one will argue when we say that the best place to sell a used car for the most money is privately. Selling your vehicle to a private party will generate the most cash, but how soon do you need that cash? If you choose this option, you could be waiting a long time for the right buyer to come along. 

That being said, if you’ve got the time and aren’t desperate for the cash, selling your car privately will earn you the most cash. 

What you can expect

If you want to sell your car without any help from a professional, there are some time-consuming steps you should take.

1. Contact your lienholder

If you want to sell a car with a lien, you’ll have to talk to your lender because technically, you don’t own the car on the title. 

2. Download a vehicle history report

You can request a vehicle history report from one of many online sites, however, you will have to pay a fee. To request a report, you’ll need the vehicle identification number (VIN). When you get the report, check for errors as these could put off potential buyers. 

3. List your car

Anyone looking for a car to buy wants to see clear, high-quality images of a vehicle online. They’ll also want to see service records, a vehicle history report, and any service warranties included in the cost of the vehicle.  

4. Schedule test drives

If you list your car right and in the right place, you should find your schedule filled with test drives. Depending on the quality of your listing, they could come from far and wide. You may also get potential buyers who can’t make it in person for a test drive, so you might have to offer a virtual one. 

5. Gather documents

There is a significant amount of paperwork needed to sell a car privately. The documentation includes your title, a bill of sale, and an odometer disclosure to release your liability with local motor vehicle authorities. 

6. Conduct a secure transaction

There is a certain amount of risk involved in accepting large sums of money in exchange for the keys to your car. Most private sales are legitimate, but there are professional scam artists you should stay away from. 

7. Consider offering to ship the car

To sweeten the deal and make it even more attractive for a potential buyer, you might want to offer to arrange car transport. This is particularly useful for people who are buying a car out-of-state.

If you want to know how much it might cost to ship a car, we offer an instant quote calculator right here on our website. 

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There is also the option of speaking directly with our shipping advisors by calling (864) 546-5038 or using our Live Chat option. 

FAQs

How can I get the highest value for my car?

There are different ways to get the highest value for your car, depending on how much time and effort you’re willing to invest. Some practical options include:

  • Sell the car yourself to a private buyer, rather than trading it in at a dealership. This way you can get the retail price rather than the wholesale price.
  • Use an online platform to get an estimate of your car’s value based on its model, year, mileage, and condition.
  • Make sure your car is clean, well-maintained, and has no serious issues or damages. You can also get a professional inspection and repair report to show to potential buyers. 

Which is the best place to sell a car?

There are several options for selling a car, depending on your priorities. Cars.com, Carvana, Peddle, and CarMax are some of the best places to sell a car online. Peddle is good for junk cars, Carvana is the most convenient, CarMax offers top value, CarGurus has a strong platform, and Vroom has an easy selling process. Other options include Auto Trader, eBay Motors, Craigslist, or Facebook Marketplace. These have more exposure and private buyers. 

What places pay the most for your car?

The answer to this question depends on varied factors. Among online car platforms, Carmax offers the highest prices for used cars, $1,000 more than both Carvana and Vroom. However, Carvana claims to pay the most for used cars when everything is done online. Additionally, location can affect the price of a used car, as people in Alaska and Wyoming pay the most for used cars, according to the national average price. 

How can I get the most money out of my car?

How much money you get when you sell your car depends on how much time and effort you’re willing to invest in the process. You can choose to get an instant cash offer from an online platform or dealership, which can be quick and convenient, but may not get you the highest price.

Selling your car to a private party can get you more money but requires more work and negotiation skills. 

Trading in your car to a dealership when you buy a new one, can save you some sales tax, but may not get you the best value for your car.

The final option is to list your car on an online marketplace, which can expose your car to more potential buyers, but may also involve fees, scams, or lowball offers. 

Where can I sell my car for the most money?

There are various ways to sell your car depending on its value, condition, and demand. Some of the most common options are:

  • Online classified ads where you post your car details and photos on websites like Gumtree, Cars.com, eBay Motors, Car Gurus, or Craigslist. Your ad will reach a large number of potential buyers and you may get the best price. However, this option requires more time and effort from you.
  • Trade-in at a dealership allows you to exchange your car for a new or used one. The dealer will give you a discount on the purchase price. This is a convenient option and quick, but you may get less money than selling privately. 
  • Selling to someone in your network, such as friends, family, colleagues, or social media contacts may be the easiest and safest way to sell your car. However, you may find yourself negotiating with people you know.

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