Determining the value

Before trying to sell your car, you need to know what it's worth. Visiting sites that list similar cars for sale will give you an idea of the retail value of your car. Be sure to objectively evaluate your car's condition. Is it Excellent? Very Good? Good? Fair? Or Poor (very damaged or won't run)? Lower that price a bit and you’ll get an idea of wholesale and trade-in value for your car. 

How to sell my car to a dealer?

  1. Drive to the lot. (If it doesn’t drive, this might not be the best option for you.)
  2. Negotiate a sale price. You may be trading the car in for another one or just selling the car.
    1. Trade in - When you trade in a car, you can get a new car at a reduced price. The trade in value of the car is subtracted from the price of the new or used car that you are buying from the dealership. This allows you to easily upgrade to a newer car.
    2. Sale - This is a straight sale of the vehicle with check payment in return
  3. Sign a sales contract.
  4. Hand over the title and keys.
  5. Get Paid.

Pros to selling your car to a dealer:

It's a fairly fast and easy process.
Someone else (the dealership) is selling your car for you
They will pay your car off if you still have a loan -- with your money of course -- so that you can drive off with a new car. The amount that you owe would most commonly be subtracted from what they pay, including value of the new car if it was a trade in.


They will not pay the maximum your car is worth. You will pay a premium for this service in the form of a reduced payment for your car. In order to buy the car from you, the dealership must be able to make a profit and cover the time that it will be sitting on their lot until the right buyer comes along.
They will not pick your car up.
If your car is damaged, not running, totaled or older they probably won't buy it. Or they'll pay rock bottom prices and then sell it to a scrap yard.

How do I sell my car online?

If you want to sell your car privately, then you will probably need to know how to sell a car online? You can get more money for your car in a private sale.

  1. Pay the car off. You can't sell a car if you don't have the title.
  2. Clean the car thoroughly inside and out.
  3. Take many pictures, including any and all stains, dings, dents, rust, tear, wear, cracks, fades, etc.
  4. Make sure you have full coverage for theft and an at-fault wreck, so that if something unexpected happens during test drive, you are covered.
  5. Find a place to sell your car
    • Craigslist - This is a popular site to list your car. Just take lots of pictures and describe it well. You will probably get some pranksters contacting you and wasting your time. But, you might get lucky.
    • Online Classified - You may want to list on other online classified sites. Some get more traffic than others, so check them out before you take time putting a listing up, especially if you have to pay something. This can take quite a bit of time, so be patient.
    • Your local paper - You can also list in the local paper, which will be on their website and in their physical paper for a fee.
  6. Post a very descriptive ad. Upload all the pictures.  List all features, potential problems, cosmetic issues, adverse history (wrecks), etc. Be very honest, because it is very easy for buyers to find out if you are not truthful. And you don't want to get that look when they see it in person and it's not what they expected. That's a complete waste of time for both of you.
  7. Screen scammers and potential buyers. You may be talking to a lot of people before you find the right buyer.
  8. Meet for a test drive in a neutral location. 
  9. Take a picture of the buyer’s license and write down the number. Write down their license plate number.
  10. Negotiate a price.
  11. Payment in cash or have them meet you at a bank to deposit the funds. Don't take a check unless you can verify that it’s genuine.
  12. Create a bill of sale with the VIN, sale price and both parties’ names and contact information. Both parties should sign and keep a copy.
  13. Hand over the title and keys.
  14. Go through any other sales procedures as dictated by your state’s DMV.


You're probably get more for your car.


A lot of prep work is required.
You may have to work with a lot of people and spend a lot of time finding the right buyer.
You will be entrusting your vehicle to a stranger and hoping for the best.
It usually takes a long time. This isn't the way to " sell my car fast " ... But the nicer/newer your car the faster it will likely sell.
Your car needs to be in at least very good condition to sell in this setting. Damaged, totaled, blown engine, etc. do not sell well in this setting and you'd be waiting a long time for the right buyer. If you found them, they would pay you very little.

How do I sell a car that has been damaged or totaled?

If your car has been damaged or totaled or it just doesn't run, then your best bet may be selling it for salvage. There are two ways to do this... The wrong way and the right way.

Junk yard (the Wrong Way)

  1. You can take it to a junk yard. Or tow it if it doesn't run.
  2. They may be able to give you a little cash for the car
  3. You hand over the title.
  4. You get a ride home because you are probably in the middle of nowhere.


You sold your car fast.


They won't give you a quote over the phone.
They won't pick up your car if it doesn't run.
They are hard negotiators and they know that you are at a disadvantage because you may have had to pay an expensive tow or drive a long way. They use this to get you to take an amount that will be well below value.
If you just can't accept their low price, you probably spent more on towing it back that you would have gotten for the car. (the Right Way)

  1. You can get a guaranteed quote online. Just answer easy questions and upload pictures if needed.
  2. A nice buyer will contact you will an offer. This offer is based upon your car's value. And it not just a rock bottom salvage price.
  3. If you like the offer, you can accept it. If you don't you've wasted very little time and no money on a tow.
  4. Accept the offer and we’lll schedule a convenient time to come pick the car up for free. 
  5. Get the payment 
  6. Hand over the title.
  7. Go back inside to finish watching your favorite show.


You get rid of your car.
Online pricing doesn't change.
You get what your car was really worth in that condition.
The people are nice.
We pick up your car for free.