Are you wondering “Should I fix the dent in my car before selling it?” The answer may not be obvious at first. So take an honest look at the pros and cons of fixing that dent (and any other types of damage) before you even start to advertise your car for sale.
Should I Fix A Dent?
Compare the pros and cons of repairing dents or dings:
PRO: You’ll help create a positive first impression. You’re facing a lot of competition from other sellers. So it’s essential to make a great first impression on customers buying a used car. Visible damage like a dent, if it’s major, is a turnoff that you should avoid. A good-looking car will attract more buyers and encourage a faster sale. Fixing even the smallest dent is worth it!
PRO: You may get more money for your vehicle. Ensuring that your car is in top shape can help to increase its dollar value. That means you’re likely to get more money when you sell. Don’t give that potential buyer the ammunition to negotiate a lower price!
CON: You’ll have to pay for the repair. Balance the price of the repair against the value of your car to decide whether fixing it will be cost-effective. A $1,000 repair is less of a big deal when your car is valued at $15,000 than if it’s worth only $5,000. Even if your insurance pays for the repair, you’ll still have to cover the deductible.
CON: Dent repair will take time. If you’re in a rush to sell (maybe you need some fast cash for that great new car you’ve got lined up), waiting a few days or weeks to get the dent fixed might be too much of a headache.
CON: You plan to trade in your current vehicle. Trading in a car is very different from selling it privately. In the case of a trade-in, you’re going to be negotiating with a dealership that can usually have dents and similar damage repaired at cost.
What Else Should I Fix?
Be sure to take care of any problems that would keep your car from passing a safety inspection. Beyond that, here are some typical used-car issues and advice on whether to get them fixed.
Scratches. Small scratches to the paint job are pretty simple to repair with a little touch-up paint. For larger dings, do a cost/value comparison to decide whether it’s worth it. And you may want to talk to an auto body specialist about wrapping vs painting your car to restore its appearance.
Rust. Rust is a common problem when you drive on Ottawa’s roads in winter. The bad news is that it’s not worth fixing a rusty car if the underframe or body panels have been badly affected, although you can sell it for scrap. In the case of less severe rust, once again compare the price of repair with the value of your car before you decide to go ahead.
Windshield. A cracked windshield is a guaranteed buyer turnoff. Find out whether your insurance company will replace it. If not, it will still be worth your while to have the windshield repaired.
Detailing. Let’s face it; everybody wants that feeling of a clean, fresh car, even when they’re buying secondhand. Detailing is an affordable way to get that effect. Unless you’re going to advertise your vehicle as a total clunker at a rock bottom price, go ahead and invest in having your car detailed before you sell.
Car Repair Tips For Smart Sellers
1. Even if selling is a plan for the distant future, take care to keep your vehicle in top condition now. Find out 9 ways to protect your car paint.
2. Still not sure whether to fix your car before selling? Don’t rely on guesswork. Instead, get a repair quote from the pros at Bemac to help you make an informed decision.