Repair Body Work Before You Sell?
We’re often asked by our customers if auto body repair work should be fixed before they sell their car.
Our answer, it’s not as simple as “yes” or “no”.
Here are some considerations in making your decision.
1) Determine the value of your vehicle as if it did NOT have body damage.
You need to know the fair market value of your vehicle; you can get an idea by checking a couple of online resources. Be honest about the condition questions and options when going through the evaluation steps.
At www.nadaguides.com next to “Get New and Used Car Pricing”, click the orange “Start Here” button and make the appropriate selections for your vehicle. It will give you an indication as to the retail value – if you’re selling it yourself, or the trade-in value – if trading it in at a dealer.
Auto Trader is another source that can provide an idea of what others, both private parties and dealers, are asking for vehicles similar to yours.
2) Find out what the body work will cost to fix.
The best way to do this is to call and make an appointment for us to look at it. We can even check on the vehicle value at Nada Guides while you’re here. The chances of getting your repair investment back upon selling decreases as the vehicle ages and the severity of the damage increases. While severe, unrepaired damage can make a vehicle difficult to sell.
Minor surface damage – such as paint scratches and chips – can often be touched up, making the vehicle look better to a buyer. This type of repair often has the potential of paying you back your repair investment.
Something you can do yourself – with a few hours time and elbow grease – is to spruce up your vehicle’s appearance with a thorough cleaning of the interior, exterior, wheels, jambs and engine compartment and an exterior wax. If you’re not inclined to do that kind of thing yourself, we can help.
3) Do the math. Does it make economic sense to fix all the damage, part of the damage or sell the car as is?
We’ll be happy to give you our opinion, at no charge. Of course we are in the business of fixing body work and wrecked cars, but what is most important to us, is that you do what is best for you and your pocketbook.
Good luck with the sale.