Selling your own car is often an emotional thing. But when the time comes and the owner and the vehicle separate, a cool head is required. An overview of the most important points.
Around 7 million used cars change hands every year in Germany, while only around 3.5 million new cars are sold. Nevertheless, selling your own car is anything but common for many owners. Because the Germans often drive their cars for a long time. In January 2019, the average age of all around 47 million registered cars was 9.5 years according to the Federal Motor Transport Authority. If you finally sell your car, you should follow a few rules. The auto clubs ADAC and ACE as well as the Tüv Süd provide tips so that there are no nasty surprises when changing owners: polishing the car If the dirt from the last dirt road trip sticks to the bumpers, this is just as bad as dusty fittings. The potential buyer should not get the impression that the car has been neglected. Car washing is therefore advisable. And the interior is thoroughly cleaned – professional preparation often increases the sales value far beyond its cost. Car dealerships and specialist companies offer this. But too much hygiene for the car can also backfire. If you do an engine wash, for example, you may suspect that you want to cover up any traces of oil and thus leaks, but if you repair scratches and make cosmetic repairs, the buyer has less reason to push the price down, which contributes to a good overall impression if tire pressure, oil – The cooling water level is correct, the washer fluid tank is filled and the lighting is working properly. Is the main inspection (HU) due soon? Then it is best to prefer. According to ADAC, a fresh HU can raise the sales price by up to 2000 euros. The overall condition of your vehicle can be determined and certified by expert organizations for prices from around 30 euros. This is the only way to determine an appropriate price. Internet research on major sales portals such as mobile.de or autoscout24.de provides a first orientation on what the car is still worth. There you can search for vehicles comparable in age, equipment, mileage and motorization. Important to note: The prices on the portals mostly serve only as a basis for negotiation, the sums ultimately achieved are often lower.Market observers such as Deutsche Automobil Treuhand (DAT) or Schwacke (for 7.90 euros) offer vehicle ratings online, some of which take special equipment into account , but not the individual condition of the vehicle. This can be determined, for example, in an individual valuation report. But you won't get the best price there most of the time. If a new car is pending, the seller usually gets a better price with a trade-in. However, if you sell from private to private, you will probably get the most money. However, it often takes patience to find a buyer, which is why a carefully created advertisement is all the more important. These include good photos that best show the car from multiple angles. Damage such as dents or scratches should be documented. Images of the best-completed maintenance booklet do no harm. The last HU is required. In general, interested parties should be provided with many details, such as special equipment. Today, advertisements are usually placed online via well-known sales portals. An advertisement in the local newspaper is another possibility. Anyone who offers a collector's vehicle can place an ad in a special magazine or post their sales intentions in certain groups on social media. A notice of the advertisement on the rear side window of the car attracts analog attention – and draws the attention of passers-by to the offer. Presenting the car correctly When meeting a prospective customer, you should present all existing documents – from the registration certificates part I and II (vehicle registration and – brief) through the maintenance booklet to evidence of past main and exhaust gas inspections (AU). Maintenance and repair invoices create transparency, because past damage should not be kept by the seller. Expert reports provide clarity about its extent. In order to create a basis of trust and the right chemistry in the sales talk, it is advisable to mention even minor scratches, which are considered to be common signs of wear and tear from a certain age, and if one conceals significant defects that were known to be known, this can be considered a malicious deception get ranked. Then the buyer can contest and cancel the purchase contract later, according to the Tüv Süd. The test drive The car should not be refused to anyone interested. But you can make serious mistakes. First of all, it is important to have the potential buyer's driver's license shown. To avoid future hassles, scratches and other external damage are documented, and it is safe to go with an agreement that obliges interested parties to pay for a deductible or a downgrade from the car insurance company in the event of an emergency. Corresponding sample documents are available from the ADAC or ACE, for example, and you should always board a test drive to stay in control. It is ideal if there is another accompanying person with you. Important documents, such as the vehicle registration certificate, should remain at home, as should existing duplicate keys. Once the vehicle has been deregistered, short-term license plates must be attached to the car for a test drive.Contract conclusion and vehicle handoverIf the parties agree, a purchase contract is mandatory. The Tüv Süd, for example, offers sample forms online. The vehicle handover is clearly documented with the contract. Details about the buyer and seller, the car, the date and time and of course the purchase price are recorded. Particularly important: exclude the legal guarantee. This is possible with private sales. Otherwise, like a dealer, the seller is subject to a two-year warranty – which can be expensive in the event of complaints. Keys and vehicle documents should only be handed over when you have received the full purchase price. Experts advise paying cash to prevent fraud, and it is common for the new owner to re-register the car. However, it is safer to inform the insurance company and the registration office yourself that the car has been sold – ideally directly by fax or email. And it is even safer to sell the car already logged off. Because you pay taxes, insurance and any fines yourself as long as the car is registered under your own name.