Many people want to buy or sell cars at a car auction, but are not sure how it works. Others are concerned that they may get ripped off at auction by unscrupulous traders. If this sounds like you, read on.
As long as you follow a few guidelines, you should be fine. You can sell your car at a reasonable price or save money by buying a car at below market prices. In fact, about 12,000 cars are sold at car auctions every week in the UK, and 10% are bought by private buyers. With a little help and guidance, you should find it straightforward to buy or sell a car at auction.
How to sell a car at auction in the UK
If you are a trader or a private individual, you can sell one or more vehicles at UK car auctions. Putting your car up for auction can be one of the simplest ways of selling an unwanted vehicle but remember that you will pay a commission to the auctioneer and the sale price may be less than for a private sale.
Of course, if there is a demand for your car and a few people are bidding on it, you could end up selling it for a lot more than you estimated. For many sellers, the ease of using car auctions is the main deciding factor for selling cars in this way.
There are two ways you can put your car up for auction. You can choose to sell your vehicle via an online auction, or you can opt to attend a physical auction house in person. Which method you decide to use is up to you.
Selling your vehicle at an online auction
Selling a vehicle via an online auction provides you with an easy and effective way to dispose of your car for the best possible price. There are a number of advantages associated with selling your vehicle online. For example, it is highly convenient, offering you a risk-free way to sell your car. It takes the hassle of having to place adverts and even reduces the chance of fraud and time wasters.
You can also expect you vehicle to sell very quickly. In fact, most cars sold at online auctions are snapped up within seven to 10 days. If it doesn’t sell straight away, you can place the vehicle in a re-run which can usually be done for no extra cost. Another benefit of selling a vehicle via an online auction is the fact that it will have increased exposure to potential buyers not just in your local area, but further afield too, meaning that it should sell quickly and easily.
To sell your car via auction, you’ll need to start by taking photographs of your vehicle, as well as its details including condition, service history and the number of owners. To make it more attractive to buyers, clean the car inside and outside thoroughly. It is a good idea to get this done by a professional car valet. You will also need to decide on a starting bid price. You will then need to submit this information to the auction website.
From here, the website will display your vehicle and the details you’ve provided for potential buyers to view. With any luck, you should then start to receive bids on the car.
Selling your vehicle online means there is no need to attend a physical auction house, which can take up a lot of your time, money and effort.
Selling your vehicle at an auction house
Alternatively, you can choose to sell your vehicle in person at a physical auction house. The easiest auctioneer to use is the one closest to you. If there are a few within a short distance, look at their websites to see what cars they sell.
Like with an online auction, you should send the auctioneer photographs and details of the car. The auctioneer will discuss the estimated value of the car and set a reserve price. The auctioneer will either collect the car or you can deliver it yourself.
When your car comes up for auction, the car will be driven to the front and the auctioneer will describe it fully. Bidders will bid for the car, and as long as the winning bid reaches the reserve price, the car will sell. After the auction, you will be contacted and told whether your car has sold or not. If it has sold, you will then receive payment minus commission.