man preparing his car for sale

Getting Your Car Ready to Sell

Selling your car can feel like an overwhelming and costly feat, but it doesn’t have to be. Making sure you get a fair price for your car is important and there are certain simple preparations you can do to help. It is essential to get your car ready to sell prior to showing it or bringing to it a dealership. Below are several simple fixes you can do and preparations to make to ensure you get the most money for you car when selling it. 

  1. Fix small DIY (do it yourself) issues: make sure the car’s lights have not burnt out (if they have, replace them). Make sure all fluid levels are topped off (i.e. coolant, break fluid, washer fluid…etc.). Buff out any easily fixable dents on the exterior of your car. 
  2. Compile all documentation: make sure you have all pertinent information handy when selling your car. This includes the car’s title, registration information, service records and anything else a potential purchaser may want to see. Make sure you have all of this information available before bringing your car to a dealership or any potential purchasers come to see your car.
  3. Clean your car yourself: it seems intuitive, but no one is going to want to purchase a car with food wrappers strewn all over the floor or old bird poop on the windshield. Do yourself a favor and give your car a thorough interior and exterior cleaning. Many people make the mistake of spending excessive amounts of money getting their car detailed prior to selling. That money is likely better used elsewhere. If you were to purchase a used car, think about how you would like it to be cleaned, and clean yours accordingly (maybe even with a bit more attention to detail).
  4. Thoroughly inspect your car: take your car for a test-drive and note any issues while driving and/ or exterior blemishes such as dents, or the need for new tires…etc. on your car. Making sure you know the ins and outs of your car will allow you to understand its true value. You can also get a third party inspection, if that feels more comfortable. It is also important to be as transparent as possible regarding the current condition of your car and the history of your car. Any scrupulous buyers will inevitably find out anyways, so best to be upfront from the beginning.
  5. Educate yourself on your car’s estimated value: in order to make sure you are pricing your car accurately and/ or know what to expect when going into a dealership, it is best to do your due diligence on your car’s true market monetary value. The more realistic you are when pricing your car, the more likely it is to sell. It is also important to keep in mind when pricing your car that many people will likely negotiate on the sale price. Plan accordingly, and build possible negotiations into your initial price. 
  6. Know how you would like to be paid: determining how you would like to be paid for your car (i.e. cashier’s check, certified check, cash…etc.), before meeting with any potential purchasers, is essential. Clarifying your payment method preference can eliminate any unnecessary shenanigans when the sale goes through. 

Preparing your car for sale is all about the return on your investment. If you spend any additional money on your car to get it in tiptop shape for selling, make sure you will, at the very least, make that money back, if not more. Being organized and knowledgeable about your car, and pricing it accordingly, will allow you to sell your car for the most amount of money in the shortest amount of time. 


Further Information

As an automotive parts and supply shop with decades of experience we have access to extensive inventory. Northstar Automotive is staffed with incredibly knowledgeable professionals, dedicated to provide topnotch service to all its customers. Let us help you make sure you are equipped with everything you need to ensure all of your vehicles are in excellent shape. Please feel free to contact one of our sales associates for more information. 



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