Trying to get a decent price for a used car these days can be tricky to say the least. Not only are more people taking the plunge with brand new cars than ever before, but there are at the same time hundreds of thousands of used cars vying for the same interest up and down the country. No matter what it is that you’re selling, chances are there will be at least a few hundred others just like it – many of which may be cheaper or more attractive propositions in general.
Of course there are plenty of ways and means to add value to the car you’re selling, which for the most part involve taking it to the garage and having it touched up – all of which may cost you more than the car’s worth. Polishing and waxing it will only get you so far, but there is in fact one other little trick that can help you get a much better price for your car:
Invest in a private number plate.
Now, at this point there will be those arguing that a private plate makes no sense as it’s very uncommon for anyone to sell their private plate along with the car. According to the folks selling personal number plates, it is indeed far more common for private plates to be retained by the owner and the old plates put back on the car when it’s sold on, so what exactly can a private plate possibly do for the value of a car if it won’t even be sold with it?
Well, the simple answer is that it all comes down to appearances and a little dash of sneakiness. You don’t intend to sell the private plate with the car and you’ll of course make this clear in your listing, but the use of the plate could still help you get a better price for your car in two ways.
1 – Hidden Age
First of all, when you put a private plate on a car – any private plate at all – you immediately hide the car’s true age from those viewing it. Now, they will of course be able to find out the car’s age and it’s something you won’t be able to lie about, but you know what they say about first impressions, right? When the prospective buyer first lays eyes on a car they’re interested in, those few seconds will often determine whether or not the sale goes through. As such, if you have a plate on the car that screams ‘relic’ at a glance, you stand a much lower chance of pulling off the sale for a decent price. However, with a private plate in-tow the buyer sees only the car and isn’t immediately presented with its age, making for a much more convincing first impression.
This is especially effective on cars that are rather on the old side, though have been looked after very well over the years.
2 – Simple Prestige
And then of course comes the way in which a private plate represents an element of prestige in its own right, which can immediately alter the way a person thinks of a car that catches their line of sight. Whether you admit it or not, the moment you see a private number plate you assume that the car it is attached to is an asset of importance to its owner. After all, folk are not in the habit of putting private plates on any old banger just for the sake of it. As such, you see the car as perhaps better than it is and also make the instinctive assumption that it is has been looked after. This may not work if you were to slap a private plate on a clapped out old Yugo from 1991, but if you’ve been looking after your car and it’s in good condition, a private plate can make it look like something very, very special.
It Pays For Itself
Here’s the real kicker to take away from the whole thing – there’s every chance that the added value your private plate brings to the car you sell could augment the cost of the plate many times over. After all, it might cost you little more than a hundred quid to buy the plate and take ownership of it, but it could easily add way more than this to the value of the car you’re selling.
Get it right and it’s win-win!