Sooner or later you will look at your 4×4 and decide it has to go or it’s time for a change, whether its for financial reasons, practical needs or just the need for a new toy.
So now you need the right buyer and for the hard cash to change hands without any hiccups. There are a lot of tyre kickers, time wasters and complete idiots out there who want your truck but don’t want to pay it’s worth when it comes to the crunch, many of us have had dealings with the above, we are sure you’ll agree.
So, we put together a few tips on how to try and pass on your vehicle without any problems, or as little as possible certainly by your own actions.
1, Taking your vehicle to market, dictates that you have a price in mind for what you’re planning to sell. As is often the case with 4×4’s in the hands of off-roading folk, there’s been a litany of mods, upgrades, or otherwise non-stock items bolted, welded, and fixed to a vehicle. You should take the time beforehand to determine if your next rig will be able to host any of the outgoing one’s parts, and decide if you’d rather leave them on to enhance the original’s value, or take them away to reinstall on the next one.
Once you’ve reached a decision on that point, it’s time to bust out the cleaning gear. A visit to any good accessory shop will show you right away that there’s no shortage of cleaning products to choose from. Degreasers, brake cleaners, adhesive removers, glass cleaner, wheel cleaner and more fill the shelves, and each have their pros and cons, read the instructions.
2, With your truck sitting pretty, there’s no better time for a Kodak moment than right now. Grab the camera or smartphone and start snapping some pics of everything you want featured: the front interior, back seats, boot or load bed area, quarter panels, badgies, roof, bonnet, bumpers, wheels and tires, and engine bay. Try to put yourself in the mind of buyer for this step. One way to look at it is that anything you leave out may be made up by the prospective buyer, and those thoughts tend to be negative. For example, taking pictures of only one side will leave the buyer to think that the opposite side is in bad shape, even if not.
3, Advertising, pick which method will pick up the right kind of buyer for you. The internet may be your best and fastest route for a quick sale by going online. The choices are many, but we’ll focus on three of them to illustrate some pros and cons: Local paper, eBay Motors, and Auto Trader.
Local Paper; Although it may it you a local buyer, the distribution will be to a limited audience and if you are aiming at a 4×4 community will there be enough targeted people in the area interested in your sale. Prices for advertising a vehicle in local papers tends to be more expensive over a given time scale, something to consider if your wheels take time to sell.
Ebay Motors; on the other hand, works much differently. Users can set their vehicle for sale as an auction with or without a reserve, a Buy It Now price, Or Best Offer, or sometimes all three. Depending on your parameters, you can select to have the car be shipped across the country or around the world, or specify “Local Pickup Only” too. Pros include financial security through PayPal, which releases funds after both parties are satisfied and Second Chance offers, which allow the seller to make an offer to bidders if the vehicle didn’t go past a reserve. Cons include fees assessed by both eBay and PayPal, which will eat into your profit margin, as well as a timer maximum of only 30 days.
Auto Trader; Having been in business for longer than both eBay Motors it carries with it an air of professionalism and mutual respect to both buyers and sellers. A post can be made to “run ’til it sells,” have a report tied to it for others to view, and even have it run on the website as well as the paper.
Pros include a variety of options to improve the odds of a sale, as well as exposure to millions of prospective buyers through multiple websites. Cons include significant up-front costs for posts and add-ons to promote your vehicle over others. Time invested in making a successful listing may also be a turn-off for some folk.
4, The Sell, So you have established contact with a potential buyer, so now what?
Location of the deal, some people may ask to meet at a location, which may be a motorway service area or car park, which is fine, but take someone with you as support just in case, and think about taking photocopies of your documents before leaving. Most people will be happy to visit you home to confirm your address and the address on the vehicles V5 document.
When you meet the buyer in person, be as cordial and helpful as possible. Point out the strengths of your vehicle and answer any and all questions to the best of your knowledge. It would be a huge mistake to lie or mislead the buyer, since it goes against the golden rule and you don’t want to be considered an idiot or worse, taken to court. Honesty and helpfulness will go a long way towards making the sale happen.
During the test drive, the buyer will be very alert, noting every little creak, groan, tick, and irritant will be detected by the buyer, you may no longer notice some through daily driving Do your best to explain what the issue is or may be, but don’t sell your vehicle short, the buyer came this far to check it out, and he is wanting it. Maintain the positives of the vehicle and move on.
Hopefully, you’ve specified that you want cold, hard cash for the vehicle. Verify that it’s all there and then begin the paperwork: title transfer and some sort of buyer’s agreement or sold as seen receipt, the latter of which states the vehicle is being sold as-is and liability is being released to the buyer not with the seller. Don’t forget to shake hands and hand him the keys!
5, Celebrate. Get yourself that cold beer and congratulate yourself, a job well done. If you achieved everything above you can sleep soundly knowing you have brokered a good honest deal with a clean conscience, cash in the hand and no liability for the vehicle now it has left your driveway.
Remember treat people as you wish to be treated, as for your next deal, when your turn comes to be the buyer.