How should I sell my used car?
There’s never been a better time to sell your old car, with demand for second-hand motors incredibly high, due in part to the semiconductor shortage that has impacted the production of new cars.
There are so many options open to you when it comes to how you go about selling that car though.
You could do it all yourself, sorting out listings for your car whether online or in local shop windows, and then go through organising the viewings and negotiating the price yourself.
However, there are now plenty of websites offering to do the hard work for you and handle the entire process on your behalf.
One of those is the car retailer Arnold Clark.
So let’s take a look at how it handles these car sales, and what you need to bear in mind if you want to get the best possible price?
How do I sell my car with Arnold Clark?
The first step to selling with Arnold Clark is to head to its website and enter your registration plate number.
You’ll then be asked to provide a mileage figure ‒ helpfully by sharing your registration plate, Arnold Clark already has the mileage from your last MOT.
You’ll then be provided with an initial offer. This is only a starting point of course, as the price is subject to a full appraisal, while Arnold Clark makes clear that it has made a host of assumptions in coming up with that initial offer.
These include things like the number of previous owners, the fact that you have a full service history for the motor, the length of MOT left on the car (it assumes at least 30 days) and that you have both two sets of keys and no personalised registration plate.
A range of assumptions about the condition of the car are made at this point too, like the fact that the wheels are in good condition and there are no imperfections on the glass.
This isn’t necessarily the price you’ll get of course, as all cars will have to be checked in an Arnold Clark branch.
Getting a more accurate price on Arnold Clark
You can leave the valuation at that point, or you can go for a ‘full valuation’.
This involves answering a few more questions, which Arnold Clark reckons will only take another three minutes.
Questions basically cover the same points as those assumptions detailed in the last section, so how many sets of keys you have, the level of service history you have for the car, as well as things like whether it’s ever been used as a private hire or emergency vehicle.
This information is then used to generate what Arnold Clarks reckons will be a more accurate valuation of your car.
Heading into an Arnold Clark branch
Whatever level of quote you’ve generated online, selling your car through Arnold Clark will mean having to head to a branch.
You book an appointment at your local branch ‒ Arnold Clark has more than 200 dealerships in England and Scotland ‒ at which point one of the firm’s experts will take a closer look at the car.
They will want to check that the car you have brought to them matches the information they already had, and obviously, if there are any glaring issues, that will then have a knock-on effect on the price you’re offered.
The firm reckons that the difference between its initial online offer and the appraisal price is smaller than tends to be the case with other car selling businesses.
It reckons that on average the appraisal price is only 3% below the price offered online.
Crucially this all comes down to the information you supply about the car in the first place. The more accurate that information is, the more accurate the valuation will be from the outset.
Getting the best price for your car then comes down to not only having the vehicle in the best possible condition when you sell it but also being open about any possible issues with the car at this stage.
Otherwise, you will only have the price negotiated down later on.
What do I pay when selling my car with Arnold Clark?
Thankfully there are no fees or charges involved when selling your vehicle with Arnold Clark. As a result, you’ll keep every penny of what the firm pays you, without any of that money being snipped away in seller fees.
Providing paperwork when selling with Arnold Clark
You can’t simply turn up with your old motor and go through with the sale though ‒ you need to provide certain paperwork and items in order to complete the deal.
- V5 document*
- Photo ID (driving licence or passport)
- Proof of address within the last six months
- All sets of keys
- Your car’s handbook
- Locking wheel nut
- Service / MOT handbook
How long will it take me to get paid when selling to Arnold Clark?
Arnold Clark promises that you’ll receive the cash quickly, with all payments made by electronic transfer. You should have the money in your account within three business days.
Is Arnold Clark the best place to sell my car?
There’s no catch-all answer to this. There are plenty of positives to selling with Arnold Clark.
The online tools are easy to use, and so long as you are clear in the information you provide, you should have a pretty good idea of what you’ll get early on.
With 200 branches to choose from, depending on your location, it could be a quick and convenient process.
It’s worth bearing in mind though that that convenience comes at a price.
Arnold Clark makes its money from selling your car on, so whatever price they are offering you, they think they can get more when selling that motor themselves.
As a result, you may find that listing the car yourself could generate a bigger sales price. Of course, that will involve far more work from you.
If you want to take the easier route and sell your car online, you should definitely take the time to compare quotes from a number of sites before committing.
You'll no doubt be familiar with the likes of WeBuyAnyCar and Motorway (with whom we have a commercial relationship), but there really are lots of other options out there.
As you can do it from the comfort of your home, it's worth spending a few minutes to see what offers you get elsewhere.
Of course, the quote is only an indication and you may receive a reduced amount, but if one site is providing a notably larger quote then it would certainly be worth going for that option.
If they slash their offer, simply thank them for their time and go elsewhere.
We at loveMONEY are partnered with Motorway, which says it'll pay up to £1,000 more for your used car.
You can get a quote below and see how they compare (note we may receive a commission but this won't affect the price you're quoted).
Once you’ve sold your vehicle
It’s really important to notify the DVLA that you’ve sold the car, which you can do online or by tearing off the bottom section of your V5C document and posting it to the DVLA.
Doing so means you will receive a tax refund for the remainder of the year’s car tax that you’ve paid, while it also means you avoid being held responsible for any future penalties involving the car.
You should also tell your insurer that you’ve sold the vehicle as soon as possible after the deal goes through.
Want to learn more before selling your car? Read all about your options in our complete guide.
*This article contains affiliate links, which means we may receive a commission on any sales of products or services we write about. This article was written completely independently.