How can I determine the right price to sell my car?

shutterstock_124540003There are many resources and tools for finding the sweet pricing spot for your used car. The following is a step-by-step guide for finding the right price to sell your car:


Consider the market

Is your vehicle in demand? Can you request for top dollar? Is it the right time for you to sell it? Below are some general rules to answer the questions above:

  • Vans and trucks which people usually use for work command competitive prices and sell quickly so never underestimate their value
  • Collector cars are tricky to price and take longer to sell. However, if you find the right buyer these cars can bring good sales prices. Keep in mind ant other market conditions that might have an impact on your vehicle
  • Getting a great price for a sports car or convertible depends on the season which you are selling the vehicle. Summerlike, sunny conditions bring out the buyers. If you sell during winter or fall, the buying process will take longer for such cars
  • Family sedans are in constant demand despite them being boring to some car enthusiasts. They are required by people who need inexpensive and basic transportation


Check price guides

Use pricing from third party respected websites to find pricing of similar vehicles. The prices on sites such as TMV and Edmunds are adjusted for region of the country, condition, options, color and mileage. Take not TMV prices are transaction and not asking price. It is where you would like to be after negotiations. Do not forget to make comparisons with other similar sites.


Survey your competition

Take a look at classified ads on website such as eBay Motors, Craigslist and Auto-Trader to see the asking prices for other similar cars. Majority of such sites provide advanced searches to find close matches to your car. Remember these prices are asking prices and not actual selling prices. Compare the vehicle’s condition, asking price, geographic location, mileage to guide you on getting the best price.


Price your car competitively

As earlier mentioned, make sure you leave room for negotiations. Ask for a little more than you expected. If you have to go lower, there will be no losses. Take into account the psychological aspects of car pricing by ensuring you are close to the benchmark numbers. For example, if your price is $20,000, price the car at $19,900 or if you want $10,000, price it at 9,900. Car dealers use this philosophy to its extreme by listing all their cars with a price ending in ‘999’. For instance, a vehicle going $12,999 may seem cheaper than one priced at $13,000. The shopper is known to find the two quite different rather than the same.


Take note that it is a tactic that demonstrates the psychology of setting prices. A product with low sales at $10 may jump off the shelf when the price is set at $19.95. As a private party seller, you will want to avoid looking like a car dealer. Therefore, it may be prudent to take a simplified approach. For example, you may opt to go for round figures such as $9,750 or $9,500.

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