A Quick & Easy Checklist for Selling Your Sports Car Online

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In the United States, it’s expected that more than 230 million people will shop online at least once per year, according to Statista data. Not only is it increasingly convenient to shop for household products on sites like Amazon, but major purchases like car sales now begin online too. In some cases, you can even sell your car without ever meeting the buyer in person. 

But selling your vehicle isn’t as easy as it might sound. It’s not like selling to a shopper who’s looking for kitchen gadgets or gym socks. The larger the purchase, the more hesitant people become to complete their purchase online. That alone can drive the price down.

Getting top dollar from selling your car on the World Wide Web requires, above all, a transparent and high-quality experience for the buyer. This checklist will walk you through the steps for selling your car online for a price you’ll be happy to take to the bank.

Track Down Your Title

Your title is a prerequisite for selling your car. Absent the title, the buyer has virtually no way to prove they now own the vehicle and thus, they cannot register, license, and insure it. 

“The first hurdle sellers often have with us is when they don’t have their title or know where it is,” says CarBrain COO, Marcin Ladowski. “Essentially, changing vehicle ownership is impossible – very difficult, at least – whether it’s for a buyer who wants to drive the car or a junk car marketplace like us. The title is the most important document for a car, bar none.”

Find your title and keep it in a safe place before you try selling your car online. 

Fix It

If you intend to sell your non-working vehicle for top dollar, it needs to be in good working order. Even if you’re selling it in ‘as-is’ condition, the fewer issues it has, the higher the price you can get for it. 

Repair as many small, low-cost problems as you’re able to including warning lights, big dents, and flat tires. If your car is in good condition and the future owner will be driving it, you’ll get a better price if you have it state-certified as well.

Clean It

Just like in-person car sales, a clean car shows much nicer in online sales than a dirty vehicle. A thorough detail job inside and out will do wonders for a quick sale. Spend an afternoon emptying out the clutter, vacuuming the floors and upholstery, and spit-shining the exterior (minus the spit, please). 

Take Photos

The only visual a potential buyer will get of your car is through pictures you take. Clear, high-resolution images and in large quantities will help reassure buyers of your car’s condition. At least ten pictures of the interior and exterior should be posted online, capturing your car’s true condition. 

Don’t hide damage! If a buyer receives the car and it has undisclosed issues, there may either be arbitration or a bad review, or both. 

Write a Compelling Description

Again, your car won’t be seen in person. You’ll need to describe it in detail for any potential buyers. Give clear, honest descriptions of the interior and exterior, an accurate mileage, and include any upgrades or repairs that have been done recently. Tell buyers why they should buy your car. 

Print a Vehicle History Report

Nothing helps sell a car online like transparency, and a vehicle history report is the best way to do it. Reports like Carfax let interested parties know the title status, outstanding recalls, dealer service history, and any accident claims on record. 

Research Comparable Prices

Assuming your car is in good shape and in drivable condition with only normal wear and tear, you should be able to get the fair market value or close to it. Look up average selling prices online including NADA Guides and KBB.com, and browse online marketplaces like Autotrader and Craigslist. Set your price based on those numbers, adjusted for condition, of course. 

List It

Depending on how you plan to sell your car online, post your car online or submit requests for offers. If you’re looking for buyers to come to you, list it on eBay, Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, and/or Autotrader. If you’re looking to sell it directly to an online car buyer, submit your requests.

Be Available

If you’re trying to sell your car, you should be around to accept offers and arrange for it to be picked up. Don’t take a three-week vacation the day after you list your car for sale. It might take a week or two to get offers or for a buyer to pick up your car. Make sure you have the time set aside.

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Fill Out the Bill of Sale

Never sell a car without the proper documentation. That includes the title like previously mentioned, as well as a bill of sale. Complete a bill of sale with the buyer, whether online with e-signatures or in person, and keep a copy for yourself. 

Transfer Title

Once the deal is done, transfer the title into the new owner’s name. Do not agree to it if the buyer asks you to leave it blank as you could be liable for speeding tickets or parking violations while it’s still in your name. 

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