You first thought is probably that you can make more money if you sell your vehicle yourself rather than trade it in. While it is true that you could possibly make up to $1,500-$3,000 more when selling your vehicle yourself, you must also consider the costs of doing it on your own, rather than through a dealership. First, you will probably list your vehicle on Craig’s List, Ebay, Cars.com, Autotrader.com, or even in the newspaper. When someone interested in your vehicle contacts you, the first thing you will want to do is make sure that they have full coverage insurance since they will most likely want to take the vehicle on a test drive. This is important not only because of the possibility of a collision, but because of liability as well. Since you still technically still own the vehicle at this point, any liability will fall back on you. However, depending on your state laws, some situations may still fall back on your insurance, so make sure you are aware of your local laws before heading out for a test drive.
The second important aspect of selling your vehicle on your own is to make sure that you are extremely clear that you are selling the vehicle “AS IS” and you assume no responsibility once the title has been transferred to the new owner. In the situation of selling your vehicle, you do not want to encounter any miscommunication and you don’t want to be responsible for the vehicle after the title has been transferred, so always be upfront about the condition of the vehicle and let the interested buyer know that you are selling the vehicle “AS IS” without any warranty. If your vehicle has been in an accident, it is important to disclose this information and let the interested buyer know where the vehicle was repaired. Never try to hide this information. Should you have a factory warranty or an extended service contract on the vehicle, make sure the prospective buyer understands that this is supplied by the manufacturer or the extended service contract company. To be completely safe, the seller and the buyer should actually sign a contract that states they both understand the vehicle is being sold “AS IS”.
The last thing to expect when selling your vehicle yourself is what happens when you actually sell the vehicle. If you own your vehicle without any liens or have the ability to pay it off before you sell the vehicle, it definitely makes it easier to transfer the title to the owner. Things get more complicated when you still owe money on the vehicle since you will have to pay it off before they can buy it or you will have to work out an agreement that they will pay you for the vehicle, and you will then get them a clear title within 5 working days. When taking funds from a private party make sure you only accept cash, cashiers check, or money order, and then go directly to the bank with the buyer to cash the funds. You never want to accept a personal check unless you retain ownership of your vehicle until the personal check clears your bank. Then once payment is complete both the seller and the buyer will go to your local DMV/Secretary of State to transfer the title. This is where it is important to have a title without a lien. A DMV/Secretary of State won't transfer a title with a lien unless you have permission from the lending institution.
Now that you’re a little more familiar with What To Expect When Selling Your Vehicle Yourself, it’s time to evaluate all of the aspects that go into it and decide if it is the best decision for you. If you enjoy meeting new people and have no issues negotiating or working with the public, then it may make sense for you to sell your vehicle yourself. Especially if you have a vehicle that will sell for less than $8,000, since it is much easier for someone to have small amount of money saved up for a vehicle. If the buyer needs to secure a loan, smaller amounts are also easier to be approved for. When you get closer to the $10,000 price point, it is tougher for the buyer to secure a loan for the vehicle.
At Graff Bay City, we want to help you make the best decision for you. If you need help weighing the pros and cons of what to expect when selling your vehicle yourself, then stop by, we’d be more than happy to help! We’re located at 3636 Wilder Road, Bay City, MI 48706. For more information on Hank Graff Chevrolet, or for any questions call us at (989) 684-4411 or visit our website at www.GraffBayCity.com.
Graff Chevrolet, Inc.
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