A guest post for GoGet from finder.com.au.

Many people are reluctant to sell their car due to the time and effort that it takes to do so. This can result in you hanging on to an old and costly car for too long, which could potentially end up costing you more (think petrol, insurance and repairs) than it would to just sell the thing!

Selling a car is not as difficult as you might think it is. Staying informed about the different options that you have when selling your vehicle can help you to make the best decision and ensure that you maximise your sale price.

A clipboard in front of a white subaru, ready to be sold - selling my car to a dealer is an option to sell your car, but there are other ways of selling a car

Selling your car privately

Organising the private sale of your vehicle does take some time and effort, but it allows you to retain complete control over the sale process, which can help you achieve a higher sale price than you would with other methods.

You will need to do some market research to decide on your sale price and you’ll need to list all the essential details about your car, such as the number of kilometres it’s travelled (eg. 250,000kms) and how much warranty and registration is left. This information should be honest and to-the-point and you should also include some clear photos of the interior and exterior of your car.

Posting your ad online is the most common way to facilitate a private car sale. You can post an ad on social media platforms such as Facebook, on sale websites such as eBay or Gumtree, or on a free or paid online classifieds page. Placing your car on the side of a high-traffic road (with a “for sale” sign) and word of mouth are also great ways to attract attention to your sale.

Selling your car to a car dealer

Selling to a dealer is an easy way of selling your vehicle. If you are not looking to buy another car after selling your old one, then selling to a dealer may be more convenient and faster than arranging a private sale. You don’t need to worry about setting a price or finding a buyer.

However, you should get a feel for the value of your car before contacting the dealer. The price that the dealer offers you will depend on how many similar vehicles they currently have. Even though you are selling and not buying, shopping around to get the best deal is still important! Don’t be afraid to negotiate either. This is completely normal when selling to a dealership.

Selling your car at an auction

Selling your car at an auction immediately exposes your vehicle to ready-to-buy purchasers in an exciting environment where the sale price could escalate quickly if there are a few keen bidders. This means that you don’t have to interact with buyers or dealers. You set a reserve price and if this isn’t met then your car is not sold.

However, auctions are unpredictable. There is no guarantee that you will get good price for your car. If your car is sold later in the day, buyers with the deepest pockets may have already made their purchases. Once the hammer falls, you cannot negotiate the sale price, you take what you get.

One size fits all? Not quite.

The best way to sell your vehicle will ultimately depend on your individual needs and circumstances. As long as you know what you want from the sale and are aware of the options available to you, selling your car can be an easy task and one that could save you loads!

About Bessie Hassan

Bessie is the Money Expert for finder.com.au – the site that compares virtually everything. Bessie's an experienced commentator who often appears on national radio, TV, and throughout online publications sharing her best money-saving tips and property advice. Bessie is passionate about empowering Australians to make better decisions, whatever it is they’re looking for.