Prices and Adverts for Used Car Sales

Getting your car on the market

Price is all important. Get it wrong and your car won't sell. Have a look around to see what your car is worth, bearing in mind, condition, registration and mileage.

The Price is Right

The easiest way to sell your car is to trade it in when you buy a new one from a dealer. However, this will give you the lowest price. Our valuations will give you an idea of the possible trade–in value depending on the car's condition.

Selling privately won't be so convenient, but you should get more than the dealer trade–in price. Don't expect to get as much as the dealer's forecourt price though – the dealer has costs to cover, is likely to be including a warranty and may well have put time/money into preparing the car.

Price your car as reasonably as possible – especially if you want a quick sale. You may want to compare similar car adverts to gauge current prices. Some cars are seasonal – don't expect to get the best price for a convertible if you're selling in the autumn.

Try to be realistic about the asking price but it's a good idea to allow room for bargaining. Potential buyers feel better if they've managed to knock the price down a bit.

Be as upfront as possible in the advert. If your car is only being sold for parts, say so.

If you're going to make claims like 'very good condition' or VGC, make sure you can substantiate the claim. The buyer won't be expecting to see a rust bucket. An unhappy buyer could take you to court if they think you've misled them in any way. Avoid words such as 'genuine' and 'cheap' – these just serve to make buyers wary.

You do, however, want your ad to say as much as possible, so always include:

  • the make, model and trim details
  • the all–important price
  • engine capacity, year and registration
  • how much remains on the MOT
  • contact details – phone number plus area code and your home town.

Most ads are charged per word. If you want to keep the count down, you can use abbreviations, but don't make the ad too obscure. Avoid little known abbreviations, such as T'n'T (taxed and tested). For ideas, see our list of common abbreviations below.

Call to Action

Remember, if you get a call, be polite. Have paperwork handy so you can answer questions, such as mileage and number of owners and remember to be completely honest. When potential buyers come round to view the car, don't let anyone into your home, and make sure someone else is with you for the viewing.

Ten Top Abbreviations

  • Man – manual transmission.
  • Auto – automatic transmission.
  • 4WD – four–wheel drive.
  • ABS – anti–lock brakes.
  • A/C or air con – air conditioning.
  • E/windows, s/roof, c/locking – electric windows, sunroof and central locking.
  • FSH – full service history.
  • VGC – very good condition.
  • ONO – or near offer.
  • OIRO – offers in the region of.