8 Steps to Sell Your Car Using Consignments

Posted Friday, Oct 20, 2023

8 Steps to Sell Your Car Using Consignments

Getting rid of your old clunker can be a drag. Not only do you have to take studio-level photographs of the vehicle, but it has to be accompanied by a meticulously written description before listing it online. Despite that, it's not uncommon for folks to wait for months before getting a decent offer for their car.

If you are at all familiar with how the consignment shop at the corner works, as in, selling your used clothes or furniture for you and splitting the profits, then an auto consignment works in pretty much the same way for your car.

Dealerships that offer the service will take your vehicle, clean it, and then market and sell it for the highest price. Once sold, the dealership will cut their commission and give you the rest. This commission is usually a percentage of the total cost of the vehicle, and in some cases, the money that's earned on a sale is split between you and the dealership.

Think of selling a car via auto consignments as a real estate professional whom you hire to sell your home on your behalf. Once you strike a deal with a dealership offering auto consignment sales, they will take care of just about all aspects of selling your vehicle. From cleaning it up to marketing it on all the listings and answering calls from potential buyers (we all know how annoying that can be).

Keeping that in mind (especially that last point), it is easy to see why more and more folks are turning to auto dealerships providing auto consignment services just so they don't have to deal with the entire process of selling a vehicle.

Step 1: Prepare Your Vehicle

Before you hand over your car to the dealership, it's essential to prepare it for sale. This includes a thorough cleaning, both inside and out. Consider investing in professional detailing; a clean car is more attractive to potential buyers. Fix any minor issues, such as dents, scratches, or mechanical problems. A well-maintained car not only sells faster but can also command a higher price.

Gather all the necessary documentation, including the title, service records, and any warranties that might be transferable. The availability of these documents will facilitate this process. Consult with the dealership regarding any specific preparation guidelines they have. They might have insights into what buyers in your area are looking for.

Step 2: Pricing

One of the advantages of using a consignment service is their expertise in pricing. Collaborate closely with the dealership to set a competitive asking price. They will typically assess your car's condition, consider market trends, and help you arrive at a fair value. Trust their insights, but also be clear about your expectations.

Remember, a well-priced car attracts more potential buyers. However, flexibility is key. If you're willing to negotiate, communicate this with the dealership. A balanced approach to pricing ensures a quicker sale without leaving money on the table.

Step 3: Professional Marketing and Advertising

Once your vehicle is ready and priced competitively, the dealership takes over the marketing and advertising process. They have the resources to create compelling listings, complete with high-quality photos and detailed descriptions. Trust their expertise in showcasing your car's best features.

Collaborate with the dealership during this phase. They might ask for additional information about your car, such as unique selling points or recent upgrades. Your input can make the listing even more appealing. Keep communication lines open and be responsive to any inquiries or requests for information from potential buyers.

Step 4: Negotiations and Closing the Deal

When a potential buyer expresses interest, the dealership takes the lead in negotiations. They have experience in negotiating and can help you get the best possible price. Trust their guidance during this phase. Be open to negotiation but also maintain clear communication about your bottom line.

If a buyer wants to inspect or test drive the car, the dealership will facilitate these arrangements. They'll also handle all the necessary paperwork, ensuring a smooth and legally compliant transaction. Throughout this process, keep the lines of communication with the dealership open. Address any concerns or questions promptly to avoid unnecessary delays.

Step 5: Commission and Fees

Before you finalize the deal, it's essential to have a clear understanding of the dealership's commission structure and any associated fees. These can vary from dealership to dealership, so don't hesitate to ask for a breakdown of the costs. You'll want to ensure that the fees are reasonable and fair.

Be aware that the dealership's commission is typically a percentage of the final selling price. Factor this into your negotiations with buyers. A transparent discussion of fees upfront will help avoid surprises and ensure that both you and the dealership are on the same page regarding the financial aspects of the sale.

Step 6: Determining the Time frame.

The length of time your car stays on consignment can vary, and this is an aspect to discuss with the dealership. They have insights into market conditions and can guide on the best time to sell. Be open to their recommendations, as they want to sell your car as quickly as possible to earn their commission.

However, it's also essential to establish your expectations regarding the timeframe. If you have a specific deadline for selling your car, communicate this with the dealership. They will work to align their efforts with your timeline, keeping you informed of any developments along the way.

Step 7: Maintaining Open Communication

Throughout the consignment process, maintaining open communication with the dealership is crucial. Any concerns, questions, or changes in your circumstances should be promptly communicated. The dealership is there to assist you, and collaboration is key to a successful sale.

If your car hasn't sold within the initially estimated timeframe, don't panic. Discuss with the dealership to explore potential adjustments in pricing or marketing strategy. Be patient and trust their expertise in navigating the ups and downs of the market.

Step 8: Completing the Sale and Handing Over the Keys

Once a buyer is ready to proceed, the dealership will guide you through the final steps. They'll ensure that all paperwork is in order, including the transfer of ownership. Be prepared to provide any necessary signatures and documentation promptly.

When the sale is complete, the dealership will handle the handover of the keys to the new owner. They'll also assist with any post-sale questions or concerns from the buyer. This professional and hassle-free experience enhances the reputation of consignment dealerships and contributes to your successful sale.

Ending Note

If you want to put your car up for sale, then the good news is, you no longer have to do it all by your lonesome. An auto consignment is a hassle-free way to get the best price possible while selling your car. For more tips on how to buy or sell a vehicle, and to find some of the best options online you can turn to  The Internet Car Lot.