March 7th, 2013


selling your own car

So I'm on the path to having our new (to us) car! But because I like ADVENTURES I put my little car up on craigslist this week... last time we traded in an old car, the dealer gave us absolute crap for it. And I've had friends confirm to me that yeah, after 100,000 miles, big car dealers really don't care about those cars, they'll go up on auction and it'll be several steps before they find the right home so look up the blue book "trade in" value and just cut in in half. bummer.

OR I could find the right owner for my beloved two-door now, huh?

So I posted it up craigslist, took a photo of it in a neighborhood that's nicer than mine and listed out everything I know in a "compliment sandwich" format... good stuff about the car to start and end the list, "opportunities" in the middle. I'm so corporate! And I've gotten tons of response - lots of calls, texts, there was a nice girl here last night with her boyfriend and they said they were "very interested", one guy this morning told me to "consider it sold" but I have some questions for him before I take down the craigslist ad. I posted the car for the blue book "good condition" price (although there are some things you could debate on the word "good") and it looks like I might actually get it.

I would appreciate tips from the gallery here on how I can avoid getting screwed. I've done some googling but it's tough, you google stuff about used car sales and mostly fine websites that want to sell you used cars, or buy yours, or whatever... just won't give you advice. The things I have learned so far are:

1) In Kansas, the buyer pays their sales tax to the DMV, not to you.

2) Remove your license plates before making the final sale, otherwise every parking ticket the buyer gets in the next X weeks could be yours! They can drive to the DMV with the title you filled out as their proof if they get pulled over.

3) Normal money with online sales obviousness... don't just take a personal check and call it good. one guy is offering paypal, which is interesting except that paypal scalps 3% off the top of my money, kind of a bummer but it all figures into the final price. (update: paypal guy turned out to be mega scammer! so change that thought... only take cash!)

4) Snap a picture of their drivers license if they want to test drive the car, and talk to them to see if they're trustworthy sounding, good luck there.

5) Have a basic buyer agreement that states that the car is sold as-is... I did find one of these templates to download.

So that's where I'm at, let me know if I'm missing any ideas. I'm also pre-approved for our car loan to start shopping this weekend... you know how I've been complaining about getting shit for interest rates on my savings accounts these past few years? Well my car loan rate will be 2.75%! I guess I'm finally seeing the highlight of low interest rates, this is awesome!