Skip to main content

Smart Ways to Prep Your Vehicle for Sale

Hand washing a car

Ask any retail dealer or potential buyer and most will agree that the smart way to get the most money for your car, motorcycle, or RV is to prepare it for sale with professional reconditioning. In addition to selling your vehicle for you, most retail Consignment Pros offer services to elevate its value to the retail level and get it sold faster.

Here are a few things to consider doing or having done prior to offering your vehicle for sale:

Detailing

This involves a thorough cleaning, sanitizing, and deodorizing of the carpets, interior, exterior, wheels and tires, and engine compartment. Having your vehicle professionally cleaned is the best investment you can make to prepare it for sale. It builds confidence for potential buyers that you have properly cared for it inside and out. According to many industry experts, preparing your ride for sale with a full professional detailing can return up to 5 times the investment when it sells.

Multi-Point Inspection

Most Consignment Pros will provide a written inspection of your vehicle and its major mechanical and electronic components. This helps get your vehicle sold quicker and for more money as buyers tend to avoid uncertainty and surprises.

Repairs

These items are relatively inexpensive and will generally return more money to you in the final sale price while helping to sell your vehicle faster. If they are not completed, these types of repairs tend to be distractions and deductions from the price during the sale process. Here are a few examples of value-added repairs prior to selling your vehicle:

  • windshield repair
  • leather and upholstry repair
  • paintless dent repair
  • paint touchup

Maintenance

It is very important to review the Consignment Pros inspection report and consider completing necessary maintenance items. Some are safety-related and may be required before your vehicle can be sold and others should be considered to enhance potential buyers' confidence in the overall condition and soundness of your vehicle. It also arms the Consignment Pro with more positives about your vehicle in advertisements and during test drive conversations. Most buyer's know they will have to do future maintenance but few will pay retail price for your vehicle if they have to immediately spend more money on these items:

  • tires
  • brakes
  • oil changes
  • belts
  • battery life
  • wiper blades
  • engine and cabin air filters
  • tune-up
  • plugs and wires
  • leaks

Special advertisting and listings

Your Consignment Pro is a market expert and knows the best sites and places to advertise your specific vehicle. In addition to listing your vehicle on the most popular sites, he/she may also develop a special strategy with you to maximize your vehicle's exposure to its target audience.

  • specialty vehicles
  • classics, exotics, rare
  • targeted mailings
  • network of previous buyers
Find a Consignment Professional
Search Articles
Have Feedback?
Share  this on:
Retail My Ride
Retail My Ride is the best place to find an auto, motorcycle, or RV consignment professional

Retail My Ride is an all-in-one site to learn about using consignment professionals to sell your auto, motorcycle, or RV. Browse our collection of articles and common questions. Search for dealers near you that offer consignment services. Learn more about us.