When it comes to selling your car, there are many options available.  Each with pros and cons, so it’s wise to think carefully about which option would be best for you and your situation. When you’ve settled on how to sell your car, you’ll need to organise the finer details. Below you’ll find all you need to know about how and where to sell.


When selling your car, it’s very important to be organised, so make sure you have all the relevant documents and paperwork to hand.  These are:

  • Logbook or V5C
  • Service and MOT history, any warranties or service packages.
  • Receipts for repairs, tyres, spare parts.

Writing an advert

When writing your advert make sure you describe it honestly and price the vehicle accordingly.  Even if it has a few dents or scratches its best to photograph these and be completely transparent about the condition. Always make sure the car is thoroughly cleaned and in the best condition to photograph for your advert. 

For more in-depth tips on creating your advert have a look at our article ‘Advertising your car’,

Selling Your Car Privately

If you choose to sell it yourself privately, you need to decide where you will advertise it.  You could use an auction site like eBay, or a website like AutoTrader or Gumtree. You can even advertise in your local paper or shop window, but these methods are somewhat outdated. 

The benefits of selling on an auction site (such as eBay) mean you will be most likely offered more than you could get from a dealer. You can set your own price and negotiate yourself, and all of this can be done from your home computer, whilst reaching the largest audience possible through the web. It’s also possible for the price to be pushed up by competing buyers. However, be fully aware of any listing fees and possible commissions from the site you are choosing to advertise from as these will affect the final price.

Remember that all the viewings will need to be organised and managed by you too. Some people find this too awkward and time-consuming. You also have to ensure the car you are selling is roadworthy, if you sold to a dealer they would do this for you. So decide what works best for you. 

Selling to a dealer or online car company

If you would rather a quick sale and less hassle, it may be an option to go through a dealership eg. Ford, or to a car supermarket like Car Giant or We Buy Any Car.

When selling to these types of buyers, you generally get an instant valuation for your car, without leaving your home. They usually accept any car, of any age or condition. If you have an old banger you just want rid of, this could be your best option. Enter all the correct details as it will be inspected. If it doesn’t match your description, expect a reduced price – in some cases much less than the original quote.

Selling to a dealer is another quick option. They can give you expert advice which a car supermarket will not.  Dealers will also do same day payment, plus you can have the option of part exchanging your car.  By selling to a dealer or online car store you will not have the hassle of enquiries and viewings for your car. On the downside, you’re likely to get less than a private sale.

When it comes to choosing whether to sell privately or to a dealer, you’ll need to weigh up the pros and cons.  If you have a demanding full-time job and not much free time a private sale can be very stressful. Dealing with indecisive buyers or haggling with buyers who want a rock bottom price can be frustrating and time-consuming.

Receipt and Proof of Sale

It sounds obvious but a receipt or proof of sale is imperative to cover yourself legally. You definitely do not want a buyer coming back to you with complaints or wanting a refund. Try also to accept money by bank transfer only as this is the safest and most traceable method for both parties. It is not advisable or safe to take large amounts in cash.

To cover both parties construct a contract of sale which can act as a legal receipt. You’ll need to include the following statement and info:

Registration number and make and model of car

Date and time of sale and price paid

Containing both your and the buyer’s name and address

‘Sold as seen, tried and tested by named purchaser and no warranty is given or implied’

Create  2 copies of the receipt. Make sure it’s signed by both parties and give one to the buyer along with the V5C2 slip so they can register as the new keeper. Keep a copy of the receipt for your records.

Don’t forget to send the V5 document to the DVLA (or complete change of ownership online).

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