Article By Eden Motor Group

How best to sell your car: privately vs dealership

We assess the pros and cons of both!


So, the time has come to sell your car or van. This might be because you have a new one on the way, or maybe you are making the most of the exceptionally high values of used vehicles at the moment to cash in. While buying a new car is exciting, selling your old one can seem like a real chore, and the price you receive will tend to reflect the convenience. So, how best to sell your car?


Here are the pros and cons of each, as well as some tips:

How to Sell Your Car Privately UK

An easy way to move a car on is to sell it to someone you know – perhaps a friend, relative or work colleague. You are likely to have a mutual trust which means you don’t need to worry too much about waiting on for viewings, fraudulent payments or the car being stolen on the test drive.

If you know your car has been reliable and are confident it will continue to be, this can be a great trade for everyone concerned. Just be sure to tell the buyer everything about the car, pointing out any faults. Also make it clear that you are selling it in good faith, but that any problems from now on are their responsibility. If it develops a fault after a few weeks which costs thousands to fix, it could lead to awkwardness at family functions or in the staff canteen.

Selling to a stranger minimises the risk of falling out with someone you like but is less convenient. We are all familiar with the sort of ‘For Sale’ advertisements which you might see anywhere from a newsagent’s window to a national website or magazine. They have been used successfully for over a hundred years to match a car’s seller with a buyer, but you will have to be patient and be ready to answer queries from buyers and potentially put up with a lot of time wasters.

If a potential buyer does come to see the car, you will need to be on your guard. Never let a buyer go on a test drive unaccompanied, as they could steal the car and your insurance company might not pay out. You’ll also need to check they are insured to drive your vehicle.

Once a deal has been agreed, you will need to think about payment. Bank transfers are safer, but make sure you have seen the money arrive in your account and don’t take their word for it. Also ensure you fill in all the paperwork to transfer the registration over to the new owner, or you might find yourself getting all sorts of fines and demands.

On the positive side, private sales will tend to realise more money than a trade-in and they can be good if your car is older or of specialist interest. 

Selling Your Car to a Dealership UK

If you are buying a new car, the simplest and most convenient way to dispose of the old model will be to trade it in at the dealership. It means you can drive to the showroom in your old car and drive away in the new one. The dealer will take care of the paperwork and the price for your old car will simply be deducted from the cost of your new vehicle.

Obviously the price is likely to be lower than you could achieve by selling privately, but you could be pleasantly surprised. Experts in car trading such as the staff at Eden dealerships will have up-to-the-minute pricing information and can give you the very latest valuation.

You may well find the price is surprisingly generous too, especially if the car you are selling is something the dealer might want to have for sale on their forecourt. Buying direct from you will mean they don’t have the added cost of going to an auction or dealing with another trader, so they will be able to give you a better offer.

If you are buying a new or used Vauxhall, Hyundai, Mazda, MG, Peugeot Suzuki, or Fiat then Eden’s friendly staff will be happy to talk you through the options for selling your car or van, even if you are not buying your new vehicle through them.


Find Out More About Selling Your Car At Eden