Selling a car -- Craigslist (and general) advice wanted

Okay, this is my first time selling a used car (close on the heels of my first time buying a new car :smiley: ), so I have a few noobish questions.

The car is a ’96 Accord with ~95k miles on it. In addition to a few other minor dings, there is a large dent in the front passenger-side door. I’d assume it’s best to mention this in my listing, with pictures and all? I know it’ll become a haggling point, so it’s probably best to state it in the beginning so it’s assumed (rightfully), that I’m factoring this into my asking price, yes?

Speaking of price, I’d like to get $3,000. How’s “$3,300 OBO” sound as a starting price?

Based on some postings here, I’m thinking of posting this up on Craigslist…which I’ve never used before. Now, I’d rather not be answering phone calls at work; does the Craigslist community get suspicious/cranky if a phone number isn’t given up front? For that matter, do they raise an eyebrow if a total noob comes in and starts selling big-ticket items?

Lastly, the fraud front. The last post in this thread asks how long a cashier’s check takes to clear, and generally how safe they are, but this wasn’t answered. This thread says it’s not unreasonable to ask for a transaction in the $3-5k range to be paid in cash. Is this still the consensus, or is that unnecessarily paranoid? Are there any general precautions I should be taking?

Thanks in advance for any help. Sorry I ran long. :stuck_out_tongue:

Depends on the model, engine, transmission, AC, 2-dr or 4-dr, but the average retail for an Accord LX 4-dr, no AC, auto tranny is about $5,000, according to NADA. With the dents, drop it to about $4,000 starting, less if it doesn’t run for shit.

If you want $3k, ask $3500. If offered the 3k, you get what you want and the buyer thinks he made a gread deal. I just sold a 2000 Olds Silouette minivan for my daughter, she wanted to clear $4000, I listed it for $4800. The first buyer offered $4200 and I accepted. The buyer had no problem paying cash, 42 one hundred dollar bills fresh from the bank. They were all consecutive serial numbers. He drove away happy and my daughter got her $4000.

The folks at Craigslist don’t care who trys to sell what as long as a bunch of people don’t flag your listing. Describe your car truthfully, post some pics and you are on your way. I listed the Olds on Craigslist with the only way to respond by email. I didn’t want a bunch of calls. I received 4 emails within an hour, I called them back and the first guy that showed up to look at the van bought it.

I also have a few suggestions to make things a bit smoother. Don’t forget to report the sale to your state’s department of motor vehicles. Tell the buyer you are going to do this. I have heard horror stories from people that have sold cars only to have the vehicle impounded or wrecked months later and someone wants a bunch of money from them. Best bet is to take the person to a licensing agency at the time of sale to transfer the title. And give the buyer a signed receipt and make a copy for yourself. You will obviously be selling the car as-is, put this on the receipt. A simple on might say:

96 Honda Accord, license # XXXXXX, VIN xxxxxx883432, sold to ___________ is sold as-is with no warranties expressed or implied, of any kind. The buyer assumes all liabilities for this vehicle upon transfer of funds. The sale of the vehicle is final upon the signing of this document.

Both you and the buyer each sign a copy, give him the keys and title and you are both happy. Sounds simple doesn’t it?

I do love those numbers, but I also checked out the Edmunds appraiser, and that gave me a figure of $3,318 for private-party sales, and truth be told I’m looking to sell as quickly as possible. (Not so quickly that I’m likely to accept CarMax’s offer of $2k, but sooner rather than later.)

Well, I’ll shoot some pictures and put something up on Craigslist later tonight. Thank you both for the help.