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Selling a Car That Needs Repairs: What to Do Beforehand

Selling a Car That Needs Repairs

When it comes time to sell your car, it can be challenging to navigate the process, especially if your vehicle requires repairs. However, with the right preparation and knowledge, you can increase your chances of getting a fair price for your vehicle, even if it isn't in perfect condition.

Auto Repairs Are EXPENSIVE

Assess the Damage

The first step in preparing to sell a car that needs repairs is to assess the damage. Take the time to thoroughly inspect the vehicle, and make a list of any repairs that need to be made. Be sure to include both major and minor repairs, and make note of any parts that need to be replaced. This will help you to determine the overall condition of the vehicle and the cost of repairs.

Get an Accurate Estimate

Once you have a list of repairs that need to be made, it's essential to get an accurate estimate of the cost of the repairs. This will help you to determine the value of the vehicle, and it will also give you a better idea of what you can expect to get for it. There are several different ways to get an estimate, including visiting a mechanic or auto repair shop or using online estimating tools.

Make Repairs or Disclose Damage

Once you have an estimate of the cost of repairs, you'll need to decide whether to make the repairs or disclose the damage to potential buyers. Making repairs can increase the value of the vehicle, but it can also be costly. On the other hand, disclosing damage can be a more straightforward approach, but it may result in a lower selling price. Ultimately, the choice will depend on your budget and your goals for selling the vehicle.

Price the Vehicle Accordingly

When pricing your vehicle, it's essential to take the cost of repairs into account. If you've made the repairs, you can price the vehicle at market value. However, if you're selling the vehicle “as is” with disclosed damage, you should price it accordingly. This will help to attract buyers who are looking for a bargain or who are willing to make the repairs themselves.

Highlight Any Positive Features

Even though your vehicle may need repairs, it's important to highlight any positive features that it may have. This could include things like low mileage, a good service history, or a recent inspection. By highlighting the positive, you can help to offset the negative and make your vehicle more attractive to potential buyers.


Selling a car that needs repairs can be challenging, but with the right preparation, you can increase your chances of getting a fair price for your vehicle. Start by assessing the damage, getting an accurate estimate, and making repairs or disclosing damage. Then, price the vehicle accordingly and highlight any positive features. By following these steps, you'll be able to sell your car with confidence, even if it needs repairs.

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