What To Do When It’s Time To Get Rid of That Old Ride

old ride

Sometimes, your old ride is like that pair of shoes you’ve had forever.  They’ve definitely seen better days, you have to admit.  But they’re familiar and you just hate to let them go.  Even so, you know it’s time to consider something new.  Shopping for a new ride is one part of the task.  How to get rid of the old one is another.

Here’s our tips on finding a new home for your old car.  When you know it’s time to let it go, consider your options and watch for the pitfalls.

Sell it Yourself

You’ll usually get the most money for your old car if you sell it yourself.  But it’s best to look at the non-monetary aspects of doing so.

There might be advertising costs.   Some of the larger online advertising sites charge, although there are many free online options for listing your car for sale.  But remember, you’ll also be doing all of the following yourself:

  • Negotiating the sale price.
  • Handling the title paperwork.
  • Getting paid for your car.

If that seems daunting, it might be worth considering selling your car to a dealer.  There are dealers who advertise cash for cars, or you can simply trade it in.  If you choose this route, get at least a couple of offers to be sure you’re getting a fair price.

Trade it In

If you’re buying a new or replacement car from a car dealer, trading in your old car might seem like the best option for getting rid of your old one.  But there are some pitfalls to watch for.

Dealers usually make more profit on used vehicles than they do on new ones.  Often, that’s because they get trade-ins for far less than real value.  So, you should research ahead of time and know your car’s value.  Check all of the valuation sites, including –

  • Kelly BlueBook (KBB)
  • NADA (National Auto Dealers Association)
  • Edmunds
  • BlackBook (true dealer wholesale prices)

BlackBook does not directly provide values online to the public.  You can sometimes get access through your local library, or other websites.  If you are able to get your car’s BlackBook value, you’ll know what dealers are actually paying for cars like yours at dealer-only auctions.

Visit your dealer with a good idea of fair value of your car.  Make your old car look as good as possible.  And be willing to pit one dealer against another on your trade-in value.

Donate It

Got a high tax bite because you don’t have many deductions or write-offs? Then consider donating your old car to a charitable cause.

The charitable organization ultimately turns your car into cash by selling it. They might decide to keep it running with affordable replacement parts. Or they might sell it as-is.  No matter how much they get, you can deduct the full amount on your tax filing.  You’ll want to check with your tax professional before choosing this option.  But it might prove an easy and financially wise way to get your old car out of your driveway.

Junk It

Sometimes, that old car has more value as parts than as an operating vehicle.  If it’s got more problems than you care to think about, there are car removal options that will take it off your hands.

You might consider this your “green” option.  That old ride might provide useful parts that keep a similar car on the road longer, or be the source of the scrap metal that’s recycled into a new product.

Consider the pros and cons of your options for disposal of that old car you’re just done with. Then choose the one that makes most sense for your situation.

Jackie LaMar

Beach lover. SoCal dweller. Life is never over unless you surrender. Keep going, the prize IS out there.