Itâ€™s tempting, when youâ€™re about to sell your old car, to just leave the minor, cosmetic repairs to the new owner and take a hit on your asking price. However, you could actually boost your asking price by several hundred pounds by doing a few pre-sale quick fixes and clean-ups.
If your carâ€™s paintwork is looking faded, itâ€™s not worth spending hundreds of pounds on a re-spray, but it is worth busting out the wax. You wonâ€™t bring back the original hue, but itâ€™ll look better and show potential buyers that youâ€™ve looked after it well.
Turn up the lights
Dim headlights, despite not casting much of a glow on the road, are a beacon that announces â€œold banger coming throughâ€. If youâ€™ve been using household window cleaning sprays or washing-up liquid (hereâ€™s a hint donâ€™t) then you should ditch them and use specialist headlight cleaning sprays. They work.
Clean and shiny tyres and wheel hubs add a real feel-good factor to a car. Give them a thorough cleaning, inside the hubs and around the tyres and even dab on some tyre shine product for extra zing.
Itâ€™s whatâ€™s inside that countsâ€¦
â€¦and if it looks like the bottom of a parrotâ€™s cage in there, get to work. Start with the floor mats either wash or replace them, theyâ€™re not expensive. Then vacuum the rest of the interior, but donâ€™t use household cleaners on car upholstery, apart from window sprays on the windows.
File your paperwork
Your car isnâ€™t stolen and youâ€™ve had it serviced regularly, but can you prove this? You should have receipts, documents and maintenance records to show repairs, MOT results and previous ownership. Not only does this quell concerns about shady vehicles, but it shows youâ€™ve looked after your wheels.
If you donâ€™t have details of previous owners, itâ€™s easy to get this information from a vehicle check website and show it to potential buyers.
Burned out or cracked taillights, slightly bent windscreen wiperâ€¦ These are all cheap, easy, cosmetic fixes that will add value to your car.
If thereâ€™s been a warning light on your dashboard for a while, like â€œwindscreen washer lowâ€, just top it up already. Leaving it for the buyer looks slack and might make them wonder what else you canâ€™t be bothered with.
Think about a decent valeting
If your car is worth a good few grand, itâ€™s worth taking it to a professional cleaning service for a thorough detailing. This could add a few hundred pounds to the value if itâ€™s an expensive car.
Smooth things over
Small dents and scratches are always worth fixing itâ€™s not hiding a serious impact, itâ€™s just tidying the car up after youâ€™re done with it. If more serious bodywork needs to be done and you canâ€™t afford it, donâ€™t get a botch job, just declare it and take the hit on the price.