Many people are looking to buy new or used cars this year, and the increased demand may expose you to buyers looking to take advantage of new car sellers. On the other hand, the prices of used cars are rising, which means you can make a top-dollar selling your car this year. You can sell in cash for car programs, classified websites, private buyers, dealerships and more. While selling your car on a classified website is one of the best ways to make maximum profits, the process may take some time. That is why it is paramount to understand everything that goes into selling a car through different options, so you aren’t held liable for damage to the car afterward; there’s more explained here. But first, here are a few ways to protect yourself when selling a car this year.

  • Be Ready For a Test Drive

Most prospective buyers will ask to test drive your car, which is prudent to accept. This will allow the buyer to feel the car, proving that you are trustworthy. However, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Choose a public area for the test drive, preferably a mall parking lot with some people.
  • Meet with the buyer during the day, not at night.
  • Bring along a friend or family member if you aren’t comfortable.
  • Don’t let the buyer test drive your vehicle alone; they might take away with it!

When selling a luxurious or expensive car, only agree to a test drive after confirming the buyer’s eligibility to pay.

  • Take Precaution With the Payment Method

Many car sellers are defrauded at the payment phase. Cash payments are the fastest and quickest way to receive payment from a car sale. While you can also accept payment via check or money order, it is best to meet with the buyer after the bank confirms that the check is valid.

Please do not agree to third-party payment methods because that’s how most sellers lose their cars without getting money to account for it.

  • Gather all the Paperwork

Paperwork is critical in any car selling process. You don’t just hand over the vehicle to a buyer in exchange for cash or a cheque. Without proper documentation, you may still be tied to things that could happen to the car after it has changed hands, including if the buyer or someone else commits criminal activity with it. It is crucial to transfer ownership legally and sign the title.

To ensure you make no mistakes, read through your local DMV website to get an idea of the required paperwork in your state since these requirements may differ. For instance, some states require that you download and use specific bills of sale, in which case you’d have to print it before meeting the buyer.

Ensure you know everything you need to sign and retain copies of all the paperwork in a clean and safe place for reference. This is especially important if the car you’re selling has some issues. Speaking of which, you should always inform a prospective buyer of the actual state of your car. After that, ensure that the buyer signs an “as-is form” to avoid claiming a refund due to said car issues.

  • Do Not Share Personal Information

There are scammers everywhere, even on classified websites. And if a prospective buyer asks for your personal information, beware! It is neither necessary nor safe to share personal information with the buyer. They ought to provide you, the seller, with background information to use during the transfer of ownership. Refrain from sharing personal information with a buyer because they might use it to your disadvantage.

  • Cancel the Registration and Insurance Policy

Upon finalizing the car deal, you must cancel the car’s registration at your local DMV office. After that, you can receive a bill of sale receipt or another document that proves you don’t own that vehicle anymore. This way, you won’t have to be involved if anything happens to the car.

Also, do not forget to cancel your insurance policy, so you keep paying for a car no longer in your possession. Reach out to your insurance company in person or via call and let them know that you don’t own that car anymore and that they shouldn’t cover anything that happens to the vehicle from that point onwards.

Follow these detailed tips to ensure you sell your car smoothly. You don’t want something you overlooked coming back to bite you in the behind!