Thinking About Selling Your Car In The UK

We are a car crazy nation, what we drive make a difference to status and quality of life to the point there are almost as many cars on the road in the UK, than adults that can drive them.

car icon price going up

But ultimately nearly all them will change owners several times during their lifetime, meaning as a buyer there is often an abundance of choice to makes and models being sold at any time. So if you are thinking about selling your car, what solutions are there out there?

Trade It In

For most, their current motor will be traded in at dealership for something newer or more suitable. A trade in is where a car showroom, will buy an existing car at trade price, if the they buy a more expensive vehicle off their forecourt. The positives of this process is convenience and not having to deal with insurance or road tax issues. Drive your old car to the showroom and drive the new car back home.


The downside is the price you are likely to get for your old vehicle. Trade price should be low enough for that vehicle to be repaired, prepared and then sold at retail price leaving a decent profit.


The trade in price is often determined by the trade books such as Glasses Guide, to help dealers offer the same price, although websites like Parkers can be close enough.

Sell It Through Online Classifieds

The obvious word that stands out here is online. The magazines or paper publications such as Auto-trader no longer exist and have moved to online versions. Just take a photo on your smartphone and upload with description and a price, your car could be available to thousands of buyers within minutes.

Ebay offers a classified service as well as their auction process. Choose to sell as a classified advert and only pay one price. If you set up an auction, you could get more money or accept a lower offer to guarantee a sale, but be prepared for a high seller costs. Maybe over 10%.

Gumtree offer a free service which is worth doing even of you selling elsewhere.

Sell To The Trade Direct

Recently a new service has appeared to help owners dispose of their vehicle quickly which started with the brand “We Buy Any Car”. If you are happy to get trade price or less, you can sell your car within the hour (or so they say), but expect to pay an admin charge as well as the low price. But for some, doing things this way allows them to buy a bargain somewhere else where there is no option for a trade in.

If you have the time, many local garages will buy cars from you. But it is worth doing some homework first, check their websites to see if they advertise to buy your car and look to see if your make model and year is similar to the stock the would normally keep.

Sell At Car Auctions

Since Ebay appeared on the scene there seems little reason to sell a private car at auction. But there may be issues with parking the vehicle, or the seller being unable to actaully sell the car. So driving it ti the local car auction and leaving it al in there hands may be an option, but expect it o be expensive. Car auctions tend to have a different costs tructure for the trade who supply may cars a year, than the private seller.

Ensure Your Paperwork Is In Place

Whatever medium you choose to sell your car, make sure your paper work is correct and in place. Even private sellers will walk away from a sale, if there is no proof you actually own the vehicle. MOT certificates to show what time is left, but also any servicing information. Having a detailed service file, can add a lot of money to a trade in or private sale.

Prepare Your Car To Sell

Take the time to make your vehicle look good, with a good valet. A quick wash is rarely enough. Even the most experienced car dealer will off more money for a well prepared car. The truth is many car dealers profit is just polished into the car., with nothing more needing to be done.
Showing off a dirty car is unlikely to deliver the kind of offer than a well presented showroom condition one, yet it is surprising how many people underestimate this fact.