Selling your car

Whether you’re looking into a fuel-efficient car or just tired of all the maintenance costs that your current car produces, selling your car is a great way to make a bit of money to put into the next one. There are so many ways to sell your car, all without having to go to a junkyard. Junking a car is an easy way out of getting rid of an old car, but to make the most out of your car, it’s best to just take the extra effort and sell it. These are some reasons why it’s better to sell than to junk it.

So Why Not Choose a Junkyard?

If you want to get rid of the car because it’s an eyesore that’s taking up too much space (plus you’re in a hurry), then by all means go ahead and junk it. But you should really keep in mind that you’ll hardly get any money from junking a car. The price you get will vary based on the mileage, size, weight, and other factors of the car. If you’re lucky, you may get around $500 for the car, but that is high in most instances. If you think junking is your best route, learn about how to get the most money for it.

Junkyards need to get a vehicle for as cheap as possible so they can maximize their profit selling it for parts. There are also some shady junkyard businesses that will try and get the vehicle for nothing or charge you for taking it. You’ll really need to proceed with caution if you decide to go with the method of junking a car.

You Have Many Options When Selling Your Car

While there is some time and effort involved in selling your car, there are so many ways to do it. Thanks to the internet, it’s gotten even easier as well. The best option for you really just depends on how much you want to get for the car, if you want another one, and how much time you’re willing to spend on selling the car.

Selling or Trading to a Dealer

This is a great option if you’re wanting a new car immediately. Selling or trading in your car will also get you  a bit of money for a new car ( which will also have to be purchased by the same dealer). While you won’t get very much money as you would if you went the route of selling it privately, this is an excellent option for saving money on advertising, dealing with people, and in general, you get to save a lot of time. Some dealers may not be prepared to negotiate over a price, so just keep your options and look into other local dealerships within your area.

Posting the Car to Websites

There are so many websites that you can post your car on to sell it. When selling privately with this method do some research on what websites will work best for you. If you’re wanting to reach out to local people, then Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace can be great options as listings are free. There are websites online where you can post to sell your car locally or regionally, but with those, you’ll need to be willing to pay a fee to have your car listed. Some websites will just take a small cut out of your earnings if someone purchases the car through the platform ( such as eBay).

Just make sure when you’re making these ads that you describe the car correctly and can prove that you’re the legal owner of the vehicle. If you receive any phone calls or messages about the car, you should respond as soon as possible to continue to engage interest. Be professional and courteous to anybody that reaches out to you who’s interested in the car. You’ll want to arrange a time for people to come over to view and test drive the car. You’ll also want to make sure that there is a safe way for the sale to be made, so neither party can get scammed.

Car-Based Buying Websites

Some websites will take most of the work out for you when it comes to selling your car. This is a bit of a lengthy process and you will most likely not get as much money as you would if you went the route of just selling it to a private party. These sorts of websites, you’ll need to enter in the details of the car, this will be information such as mileage and age. You’ll then need to bring it to a depot where the car will get an assessment. This assessment will then base the value of the car when selling it on the website.

With these sorts of websites, you’ll have to pay for the assessment, administration fee, possible membership fees, and a percentage will be taken out of the sale for the website as well. This can be helpful in some cases, but usually, you’re not getting too much money out of it either.

Selling Your Car The Old Fashion Way…

Before the internet, there was print media and word-of-mouth marketing. In rural communities, this is still a great way to sell cars. It may take some time to get some reach, but it is a great way. Another way to give notice that your car is for sale would be to have a sign on the rear window stating so and contact information when driving around. You’ll often find in more rural communities that people will park the car in a parking lot of a busy store and have a sign stating that it’s for sale. Proceed with caution if you decide to go this route as there’s a chance of your car getting towed or receiving damages.

Sell at a Car Auction

Car auctions can be a hit or miss as there is never a guarantee that they will reach it’s reserved price. There’s always the chance of getting less money for the car than what you were hoping for. eBay still has their famous auction feature, so you could also just post it on there, but you’ll then need to focus on how to advertise it to sellers.

Sell the Car for Parts

One final way to make a bit of money from your car would be to dismantle it and sell it for parts. You’ll find on plenty of websites that people need specific parts for their cars, so selling it second-hand, especially more hard-to-find pieces can be very handy. If you do decide to go this route, it’s best to get a bit of knowledge about cars so you can market these car parts in the best way possible. Read our article here about some of the best parts to sell or remove before junking a car.

Selling Your Car vs Junking It – Conclusion

I get it, if your car is rusted out, doesn’t drive, and isn’t worth the effort then perhaps a junkyard s your best option. My point here is that when you need to consider getting rid of a vehicle, you should not think junkyard first. You will lose out on a lot of potential money. If you think your car is junk and really has no life left, then perhaps finding a junkyard that buys cars is an option.


James is an avid junkyarder and mechanic. He has visited Junkyards in every US state and has restored over 30 makes and models of vehicles. He has several automotive and recycling related blogs that generate over 150K views a month.