My Car

email this page
print this page

car seller's tips

When you come to sell your car there are three basic options: private sale, trade-in or auction.

private sale

Selling privately will often yield the highest price, but can take some time, effort and advertising expense to find a buyer.

Get an idea of your car's market value by checking the prices asked for models of similar condition. RACV Motoring Advisory Line can help, or look in newspaper classifieds, websites and used car magazines.

Once you have determined its prospective value and worded an advertisement, choose where to place your advertisement. Some print classifieds also use the internet to place advertisements, which can be useful in reaching more potential customers.

If selling your car registered, it is your obligation to provide a roadworthiness certificate less than 30 days old so the vehicle can be registered in the new owner's name. You will also need to complete the seller portion of VicRoads' Vehicle Registration Transfer Form. To sell a vehicle without a roadworthy certificate you must first cancel its registration and hand in the number plates to VicRoads.

In order to sell your car privately, you'll probably need to allow the prospective buyer to test drive it. Click here for important information on test drives.


Trading-in your car to a dealer for another one - new or used - can be simpler than selling it privately. You don't have to find a buyer, pay for advertising or keep your old car for a long time.

While trading-in can be the quickest and least stressful way of selling your old car, you are unlikely to get as much money for your car as with a private sale, given that the dealer has to re-sell it at a profit.

Trading-in can be confusing. For example, the amount offered for your old car may include a discount off the car you're buying. Ask the seller to give you the total changeover price. That is, how much you have to pay to leave your car and drive away in the one you want. After all, it is the only figure that matters.

Keep your old car until the new one is ready for delivery. If the trade-in deal depends on you handing over your old car immediately, try to negotiate this point.


If your car is old and in poor condition, it may be best to offer it for sale at a public auction. While you might not get much for it, it's probably more than you'll get from a scrap yard.

  • For advice contact the RACV Motoring Advisory line on: (03) 9790 2190.
share this page
submit to Digg!Digg  
submit to redditReddit  
follow us on twitter