Preparing your car for a sale is an important investment in time and – possibly – money. Not only could it mean that you sell your car more quickly, it might also mean you get more money for it.

The very least you should do is to make sure it’s clean and tidy inside and outside. Simple things like clearing out the glovebox and doorbins can make the car all the more attractive to a buyer. It might be worth considering a professional valet which could save you time and be a sensible investment. After all, if a £20 valet adds £100 to the value of the car, you’re quids in.

Likewise, go around the car and check that all the electrics work – everything from the lights and wipers outside to the stereo, air-con and displays inside. You should also check that the tyres (including the spare, if your car has one) are in good condition and that all the mechanical bits and pieces are in good working order.

If you come across any minor problems or damage, it’s worthwhile getting them fixed; and, if your car has an MOT that is due to run out in the near future, consider getting a fresh one done.

This is not just because a clean bill of health will make the car more appealing to potential buyers, but also because any obvious problem provides the buyer with the perfect opportunity to try and beat you down on price.

Finally, don’t forget that preparing your car involves more than just the car. Gather together all the paperwork you have for the car – MOT certificates, and details of any services or repairs that you have had completed on the car. Again, it all helps to make the car more valuable and attractive to a potential buyer, as it will help to confirm the car’s history and give the peace of mind that comes from knowing that the car has been looked after.

Related: Sell your car with Auto Trader.

  • Clean the car inside and out
  • Make sure everything works
  • Gather together all the car’s paperwork