How to Sell a Car at a Dealership

car for sale sign on a used vehicle


You’ll find that most Central Illinois auto dealers will offer to buy your current car from you through a trade-in program. It’s a great way to save money on the purchase of a brand new car, truck, or SUV, or simply to offload your old car for cash. Whichever you choose, learn how to sell a car at a dealership and what to expect when you sell a vehicle to Sam Leman Automotive Group, then contact us to set up an appointment today!.

How Does Selling Your Car to a Dealership Work? 

If you’re wondering “how does selling your car to a dealership work?”, the answer is that it’s actually very straightforward and an easy: 

  • Clean Your Car: Having your car washed, detailed, will help to increase the value of your vehicle before you bring it to the dealership. 
  • Make Minor Repairs: Inexpensive repairs like replacing bulbs or any small broken parts will make your car more attractive. You can leave major repairs to the dealer, as those will cost them less to fix than you would have to pay out of pocket.
  • Write Down the Benefits Of Your Car: Gather up the maintenance records of your vehicle, make a list of its features and any accessories you’ve added like extra key fobs or bike racks. This will increase the value of your vehicle and make it more appealing to dealerships. 
  • Have Your Car’s Paperwork: Having your vehicle’s title and registration, as well as any outstanding loan information, will save time on the dealer’s end and get you your offer faster. 
  • Research Your Car’s Value: You can use tools from, Kelley Blue Book, or your local dealership to find the trade-in value of your car. Having the estimated value of your vehicle will help you negotiate your price.

What to Expect 

After preparing your car for sale, you can expect the rest of the process to go as follows: 

  • Make an Appointment: While you can also just stop by a dealership and sell your car, it’s best to set up an appointment in advance. 
  • Used Car Manager: Most dealerships will direct you to a Used Car Manager or a salesperson to handle the sale. They’ll collect your information and run a vehicle history report on your car. 
  • Inspection: Either the Used Car Manager or the technicians in the dealer’s Service Center will inspect the appearance and mechanical condition of the vehicle.
  • Consider the Offer: Based on the results of the vehicle history report and inspection, the dealer will make you an offer. You can then either accept the offer or go to another dealership to see if you can get a better deal. 

Benefits of Selling Your Car 

Some of the benefits of selling your vehicle to a dealership include: 

  • Save Time and Avoid Hassles: If you sell your car on your own, you’ll have to list your car online, field inquiries from potential buyers, arrange test drives, and haggle over the price. It can take weeks or even months to sell a car privately. When you sell your car to Sam Leman Automotive Group, the entire process will take about an hour or so.
  • Lower Your New Car Price: Using your vehicle as a trade-in allows you to apply your current vehicle’s value towards your new car. This will offset the price of your new vehicle or significantly lower your monthly payments. 
  • Save on Your Taxes: When you trade-in your current vehicle and purchase another vehicle from Sam Leman Automotive Group, you only pay the sales tax on the difference between the trade-in value and the cost of your new car. 

Sell Your Car to Sam Leman Automotive Group!

Whether you want to trade in your vehicle or sell it outright, you can count on enjoying an easy, hassle-free experience at Sam Leman Automotive Group now that you know how to sell your car to a dealership. If you decide to opt for trading-in your car, make sure to explore our new vehicle specials to find our latest money-saving offers. You can also browse our car buying tips to learn more about our financing options.

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