Deciding on the right price for your used car

18/03/2024

Asking the right price for your used car is an important factor when selling. You want to attract the right buyer and sell quickly, but at the same time you don’t want to feel like you’re giving your car away. The following tips outline how to price a car to sell fast and for a competitive price.

Don’t forget, if you want to sell your car for a great price without the hassle, try using AutoFlip’s online sales platform. Our experienced and expert team knows how to estimate car selling prices taking into account up to date market conditions. Once your car is listed, our network of trusted dealers competitively bid to buy your car so you get the best competitive trade-in price. 

What price should I sell my car for? Tips and tricks

There are a number of different factors that influence a car’s selling price. It’s not advisable to arbitrarily estimate car selling prices without first researching the market. Understanding the level of buyer demand for your vehicle alongside its condition helps you determine a fair price that allows you to sell well within a reasonable timeframe.  

Understand the Market

The market is what determines the value of your vehicle, meaning you should pay close attention when it's time to sell your car. Many people assume that their car’s value will be the same as it was when they last checked, but the market is constantly evolving depending on a number of variables, including seasonality, geography as well as availability and demand.

The time of year can impact your vehicle’s value. Some types of cars, such as convertibles, may be more popular in the summer months. Family cars may also experience a value boost in the warmer weather, as people look to hit the roads over the summer holidays.

People may also be influenced by their geographical location when choosing a car. 4x4s, utes and vehicles from dependable brands tend to command a premium in rural areas where breakdown services are limited, while city dwellers may prefer smaller, more fuel efficient cars.

The car market is also influenced by various trends and supply, meaning that some cars’ values skyrocket due to increased demand. This section of the market can be very difficult to predict, meaning that it’s important to regularly check the value of your vehicle to ensure you sell it for the right price.

Evaluate Your Car’s Condition

There are a number of critical aspects of a car’s condition that impact its value. Prospective buyers should consider both cosmetic and mechanical elements of your vehicle before making a decision.

Cosmetic blemishes may appear superficial, but they can be costly to repair. However, as they usually do not impair the operation of the vehicle, many buyers are willing to still consider your car even if there are marks on the bodywork or interior. Keep in mind, however, that they may attempt to negotiate money off the price of your vehicle due to its appearance.

Mechanical issues, on the other hand, can be far more detrimental to the safe use of the car. They are also harder to spot to the untrained eye, often requiring a qualified mechanic to inspect the problems.

For the most part, a thorough clean, minor bodywork repairs and a good service record will be enough to significantly increase your vehicle’s appeal and value to prospective buyers.

Consider Additional Factors

There are a number of other items that can affect the value of your vehicle. For example, your vehicle registration details confirm that your car is being sold legitimately, while a thorough service record suggests that it’s been well looked after. Both of these documents provide added peace of mind to buyers.

Any modifications to your vehicle should also be mentioned. While they can add value to the right buyer, others may be put off from purchasing your car either because the alterations are not to their taste, or over concerns for the vehicle’s performance or reliability. 

You should also check whether your vehicle has any remaining warranty, either from the manufacturer or from another dealer. If it does, check whether it’s transferable, to assure potential buyers of reduced hassle and running costs in the future. 

How to price a car to sell it

You can use the information gathered from the steps above along with results from online valuation tools to set a fair and competitive price for your vehicle. Remember to account for negotiation (if selling privately) when determining your vehicle’s selling price. Most private buyers will want to negotiate anything from $1000 to $2000 off the price of your car. You can reduce the prospect of haggling by addressing any obvious issues that detract from the value of your car prior to selling it.


Remember to be transparent and accountable throughout the selling process. Be ready to justify your asking price to prospective buyers, or to answer any other questions about your vehicle.

The easy way to estimate car selling prices

While you can maximise the value of your car by considering the above tips, AutoFlip takes the stress out of researching and setting a price for your used car. 

Listing your vehicle (for free) with us means our network of 1000+ trusted dealers will bid to buy your vehicle, ensuring the price you receive is the best competitive trade-in price. It’s the quicker, easier and smarter way to sell your car for a great price.