If you want the best ideas for selling your classic car, you've come to the right place. Figuring out how best to manage that process may seem like a headache. In a lot of ways, it can be. There's a lot to consider when you sell classic cars, whether online or through dealers. There are forms to complete and a host of legalities to keep in mind, not to mention the tire kickers getting your hopes up, only to dash them eventually.
With so much to think about, you may be nervous about whether you've chosen the best route, gone to the right place, or ensured you'll get the most bang for your buck. That's why we've compiled a list of all your options. You'll learn everything you need about where and how to get paid for your classic car.
One way to sell your car is to take matters into your own hands and do it yourself.
You might already be thinking, "if I'm selling my classic car myself, I'll be able to make sure I sell it for what it's worth without extra costs." That's right, as long as you know the value of your car well and use that to your advantage. You can get an excellent price if you have a classic car to sell. Buyers of classic cars are also more likely to opt for private sales since dealers tend to have more modern ranges.
Nowadays, private selling is also easier than it used to be. You can list your car for sale online by advertising it on social media marketplaces or in online classified ad communities. You could even ask friends and family to spread the word by sharing the post, which means that your classic car buyers could well be someone you know.
Selling to a friend or a neighbor can usually be painless and mutually beneficial since you already know one another, so there's trust there! Plus, you can avoid fees and commissions, arrange for fast local pickup, and usually manage a quick sale.
Unfortunately, private car sales have many more cons than pros. When dealing with people, you don't know; there is always a risk – especially when selling a classic car online, with scammers and fraudsters waiting in the wings. If you doubt your ability to handle internet safety, the risk might not be worth the direct exchange. The internet can be a cesspit for scams and shady dealings.
But also, it can be hard to vet buyers for classic cars, whether online or offline. It might also take a long time for you to find someone willing to make the trade. On top of this, you also have to worry about being bombarded with lowball offers, tire kickers, and time wasters. Shipping and inspection costs might also creep up on you, depending on who you're dealing with and where they are located.
If your goal is to sell your car without too much hassle and relatively quickly, then selling privately isn't for you. Instead, you must wait for the right buyer, organize the paperwork, arrange title transfers, and sort out other DMV requirements. Ultimately, you may find that you can't sell the car for as much as it's worth. It's also hard to schedule car viewings, especially when you have little control over what time of day people will be willing to speak with you or view the car.
For many reasons, this might not be the best way to sell a classic car.
If you want to take a more traditional route, selling to a dealership is another option.
If successful, selling a classic car to a dealership means instant funding and a quick sale. Look out for a reputable classic car buyer who knows who buys classic cars. Dealers can also handle that dreaded paperwork. With all these perks, you'll likely save time and gain some peace of mind!
If you want to trade in your car instead, there are some unique perks, including tax credit towards the vehicle you buy. It's also a simultaneous transaction, so you get your new vehicle as soon as you sell it.
On the other hand, going through a dealer isn't always the best car-selling avenue. The biggest drawback is that dealers compromise the amount of money you can get from the sale. Why? Because dealers buy your car for a low price and sell it for a high price. In other words, they sell it for the price you could have sold it for and keep the profits. As a result, classic car valuations are especially low when selling to a dealership.
When selling your car, it's essential to understand its value. Don't let a dealer downplay what you could make when you sell your classic car. Customers are willing to pay top dollar for these valuable assets.
If you're going the trade-in route, remember that trading in a classic car means you'll get crushed on wholesale value. The actual trade needs to be in good running condition and in decent shape for a dealer to consider taking it.
Also, the dealer gets to name the price, and your car might sit for a long time before being sold. The exception is if the vehicle is priced well or is rare.
Not only does this mean you might wait around, but it also means most dealers won't risk taking a unit into inventory if they are unsure they can sell the car quickly enough.
If selling to a dealer doesn’t work for you. Another option is to consign your vehicle to one instead. You’ll be paid when the dealership manages to sell your car.
Consigning your vehicle means you’ll be working with someone receptive to your pricing. You get to set a price you’re comfortable with.
You’ll get to store your car in a facility the dealer has access to for showings and inspections.
You also won’t need to worry about legalities and forms. All the labor-intensive paperwork is taken care of, and so are those risky financial transactions.
Plus, you won’t have to deal with phone calls at inconvenient times or a barrage of questions over email. This is because you’re not in direct contact with buyers.
On the flip side, consigning your car to a dealership means you might have to wait a bit longer than if you were to sell it to a dealership. That’s because the dealer will only pay you once it has sold your car to its new owner.
On top of that, you’re bound to the consigning dealer. Consignment agreements are usually at least three months, requiring a fee to break the contract for the minimum commitment.
Transparency is also low on the list here, so finding someone you can trust is essential. You may never really know what amount your car is being sold for. A consigning dealer can be deceptive, naming one price to the seller and another to the buyer, thereby increasing the money they get to walk away with.
Storage also comes with its own considerations. If the car isn’t maintained or stored correctly, it could run into issues. This won’t be a big problem for the dealer, who can still sell your car for a comparatively lower price and pocket the difference. But the person to lose out is you.
On top of that financial risk, consignment agreements tend to be pricy. You’ll need to factor in paying commission, monthly advertisement fees, and storage and maintenance costs.
Even after paying for that, your car might sit for a long time. Most consigning dealers are pretty old school and won’t take advantage of modern technology to increase retail exposure.
A final option – and likely the best place to sell classic cars – is to go through Exotic Car Trader.
You don’t have to worry about everything that goes into advertising your vehicle. Professional photos are guaranteed, so you don’t have to do it yourself. We will display your car from every angle.
Our team members perform deep market analysis on pricing and comps, and their expertise can help you make the deal of a lifetime. Exotic Car Trader also has a robust online automotive platform that targets collector and enthusiast buyers, ideal for selling classic cars.
Don’t worry that a potential buyer will miss out on buying your car. We have an entire sales staff with 24-hour, seven-day-a-week coverage to handle inbound queries.
There is also an in-house title clerk and notary to assist with DMV paperwork, sale paperwork, and title transfers. Say farewell to the pesky paperwork!
You get to name your price, and we also handle all price negotiations. We offer to finance and take trade-ins against all listings, and we also offer lower fees than many in-person consignment programs.
You can rest easy knowing that the fund transfer between buyer and seller is safely and securely handled. If you wish to change your mind at any point, Exotic Car Trader works on a month-to-month agreement, and there’s no fee to cancel.
The only real con is that there is a fee to pay. Still, we won't let that money go to waste, with a long menu of ways we can serve you.
Figuring out how to sell a classic car isn’t easy. You may ask yourself questions like “How can I sell my classic car for cash?” or “Where can I sell my classic car near me?”
Some avenues are better than others, with more perks, less paperwork, and better safety and security. We hope this article has made the process easier for you to decide what’s best.
Whether you’re selling a flashy Classic Car, Supercar, Luxury Car, or Exotic Car we are here to make the process easy and get you top dollar. Exotic Car Trader makes the process a whole lot easier. In many situations, selling your car presents a financially painful experience in addition to spending hours of your time with tire kickers and time wasters.
As a brick-and-mortar company with strong ties to our local South Florida car culture, we pride ourselves on superior customer service and some of the lowest consignment fees in the country. If your car would look right at home with our current inventory, consider learning more about our car selling program.
We are not attorneys. This article does not contain legal advice.
The Complete Guide to Selling a Car on Consignment
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We are not attorneys. This article does not contain legal advice.
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