Selling your old car at a competitive market price is an incredible art, and it requires lots of hard work! Apart from basic aspects, it would help if you considered several other things, like keeping the paperwork ready and ensuring the good condition of the vehicle by getting it cleaned and serviced before putting it up for sale.

Some people prefer to let car dealers sell their cars, but that doesn’t get you the best price for a used car. You’ll want to settle for the best trade in value for your car. It is recommended to sell the car to independent buyers to earn a price equivalent to market value. Though it seems tough, the process is really simple and requires some steps to be followed to make the sale profitable. The first and the most important factor that will get you the best price is how well-maintained your car is. Listed below are the things that must be fixed or done before putting your car up for sale.

First Things First

Study the Market

You surely wouldn’t want to sell your car at a lower price! It is recommended to research the market value of the car to be sold. There are different dealer inventories available via which you can find the price values of comparable vehicles in your area. In this way, you can estimate your vehicle’s worth.

However, the price estimated by the listings does not ensure that your vehicle will be sold at that price exactly. Different factors determine the car’s sale value; the vehicle’s condition, mileage, season, and region are important price-determining aspects. Car value from VIN also varies from model to model. For example, some specific types of vehicles are in demand at certain times of the year. Sports cars or convertibles are not desirable during winters. However, these could be sold at better prices during summers. However, SUVs and vans are constantly in demand, but these pay off better when sold in rural areas rather than urban areas.

Assemble the Paperwork

Paperwork is very necessary for all transactional proceedings. Here, selling a car via a dealership is beneficial as it takes care of most of the paperwork because it’s a part of their car buying service. However, in the case of selling the vehicle to a private party, it becomes your responsibility solely to take care of all the paperwork.

The state usually specifies the required documents, but mostly these include sales bills, odometer certification, and vehicle title. Besides, a copy of the car vehicle’s history report is also provided to the prospective buyers by sellers.

Things You Should Get Fixed

Listed below are the car repairs that must be completed before selling the car:

Windshield and Windows

If there are any scratched, chipped, or cracked windshields and windows, these must be fixed in the first place. If power windows aren’t working, then get them repaired too. These minor repairs make a major impact on the potential buyers.

Fix the Cosmetic Imperfections

Before putting your car up for sale, make sure that its body appears flawless. The body appearance makes the first impression on buyers, and you cannot ignore it! The auto body repair shop can easily fix all the dents and scratches. If there’s a need for paint, then get it painted too, as it will impart a brand new appearance to the car! Also, do not forget to replace the broken headlights.


If your car has blading or worn tires, it’ll seem shabby and unsafe to drive by the buyers. So, you must get the tires repaired or replaced to make your car seem safe!


Brakes are the most crucial part of any vehicle, and even if you are not selling your vehicle, you must take care of it for your own safety. Get the squeaky or grinding brakes replaced before selling your car and ensure safety.

Engine Maintenance

The engine’s status is the most significant technical aspect of the car, and it impacts the selling price of the vehicle. Not only that, but some other engine aspects are also very important. For example, the engine compartment must be clean so that the levels of various fluids housed inside the engine can be read properly. Moreover, the engine hoses and wires must be repaired or replaced if these are torn or cracked. The dirty air filter also needs to be replaced.

Replacement of Spark Plugs

There must not be any aging spark plugs as these immediately come to the notice of the potential buyers during the test drive. Replacement of Spark Plugs is comparatively inexpensive and should be carried out when the engine idles unevenly or noisily, gets jumpy, or accelerate slowly.

Take Care of Minor Aspects too

Buying a car, be it brand new or secondhand, is not just an intellectual decision but also involves emotions. Being a seller, one must take care of minor aspects too that do not add value to the car but impart a lasting impression! There is a list of some very minor, simple, and inexpensive things that should be done:

Get the Oil Changed

Recently changed oil depicts a lot about car maintenance and tells that the car is being maintained regularly. This automatically delivers the impression that the vehicle has been proactively in care.

Deep Clean the Interior

The interior of the car adds up to the car’s physical appearance, and it could be enhanced by either getting the car serviced or by doing it yourself. It is very simple; all dirty rugs must be replaced, cup holders should be scrubbed, and the seats must be cleaned using a specialty fabric cleaner. If the car smells bad, air freshener is not the solution; instead, it must be cleaned until it starts smelling good on its own.

New Inspection Tags are a Plus Point

It is recommended to get the vehicle inspected because a recent inspection adds weightage to the car’s value. It depicts that the vehicle is roadworthy and is free of immediate issues that need fixing. The inspection does cost but thinks of it as an investment that helps to win buyer’s satisfaction.

All of this takes time and money, but once done, these add up to the car’s value and help get a good selling price!

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