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Chapter 4 – Selling your Car


You have been warned: This is going to be a tough one.

Nobody’s buying cars at the moment. Not at the price you expect, anyway. The credit crunch has taken its toll. Dealers have a surplus of stock which they’re finding hard to clear, no chance of them taking on new cars for sale.

The first step is always to go to your own dealer and see if they’ll buy your car back from you. We have a Nissan Micra bought locally in 2006. We went to the Nissan dealer in May. After an unpleasant experience with a smarmy salesman (who tried to get us to make an under-the-table deal with him “Your price, Nissan’s price, My price”), we were told that they were not buying any second hand cars at the time and were advised to come back in June and check again.

May was too soon to hand over the car, anyway. What would we do in the meantime?

So we advertised elsewhere. The church noticeboard, friends, Facebook, Loot, emails.

There were a few bites, but no takers. We had an offer from a Ford dealer, but the price seemed far too low. Our car was worth double that.

June came. We went back to the Nissan dealer only to find that their team had been replaced and was under new ownership. These guys inventoried the car again and said they’d get back to us in 48 hours with a yes or no. The deadline comes and goes – no reply. On calling them, we were told to wait another few days. In desperation, we drove there only to be told that they were still not buying at the time due to surplus stock.

We were advised to go to Cash for Cars. A very helpful guy there explained the market to us and showed us how the prices are decided based on sales on Autotrader. Our little Micra was going for anywhere between £3000 – £6000. It was ridiculous. With cars being offered for £3000, who would pay a ‘good’ price?

Several friends recommended advertising on Ebay – they had had some success that way. No bites yet.

Finally, Perry’s bought our car for a measly sum. It was the best we could expect under the circumstances. Without the luxury of time, bargaining becomes irrelevant. Either you take it or worry about what you’re going to do next. This way, at least the car is sorted and you have cash in the bank.

Prepare to be disappointed with what you get. I’m willing to bet that the housing market will be similar.

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