How to prepare your car for its sale

Although things like the service history and mileage directly affect your car’s value, its appearance is one of the biggest things that dictates what it’s worth. It’s also one of the easiest things for you to transform yourself. Giving it a good scrub inside and out will see your car’s value increase – in some cases dramatically.

However, a professional valet will generate even more impressive results. Spend £80-£100 on a professional valet and your car’s value should increase by rather more; perhaps as much as £300-£400 as a trade-in at a used car dealership. Check out our cleaning guide for the low-down on how to transform your car’s appearance.

Also ensure all the fluid levels are topped up and that you’ve got all the paperwork to hand. Any invoices will be useful, while the registration document and MoT are essential.

If there’s minor damage such as small dents, scratches or interior trim damage, it may be worth getting a professional in to fix things. Such work needn’t be costly, but you do need to make sure that you’ll get your money back by being able to ask a bit more for the car.

If the tyres are worn out, you probably won’t get your money back by replacing them, unless you fit some cheap ones – but a buyer may then think that you’ve run the car on a shoestring. That’s why you’re probably better selling the car with tyres that will soon need replacing, and taking a hit on the asking price.