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Can You Negotiate With Carvana or CarMax When Selling a Car?

Written By

Lewis C. Smith

Published

Jan 1, 2024

Car for Sale
Car for Sale
Car for Sale
Car for Sale

When selling your car, choose between Carvana and CarMax for a seamless experience. Learn how to negotiate effectively with these top platforms.

The Selling Process: Carvana & CarMax

Carvana and CarMax have streamlined the process of selling used cars to provide a quick and straightforward experience.

Carvana lets you conduct the selling process entirely online. You input your vehicle's details, receive an offer within minutes, and if you accept, Carvana arranges pickup or allows you to drop it off at one of their Car Vending Machines.

CarMax also offers online appraisals through their own website and Edmunds.com, allowing you to receive an offer without even leaving home. If you choose to bring your car to CarMax for an in-person appraisal, they'll provide an offer valid for seven days. Please note, the final offers from both Carvana and CarMax are contingent upon a vehicle inspection.

Negotiation: Is There Room to Haggle? No, but then Yes!

Negotiation: Is There Room to Haggle? No, but then Yes!

Both Carvana and CarMax adopt a no-haggle policy for buying and selling. Their prices are fixed, which removes the traditional negotiation process from the equation. This policy promotes transparency and simplifies the process by eliminating potential negotiation stress. In fact, having these fixed offers allows you to easily compare offers from different sources without making assumptions about possible negotiation outcomes.

However, a Carvana or CarMax offer does empower you, should you desire, to negotiate with other dealers who want your vehicle. How can you find other dealers who might want to purchase your vehicle and beat your CarMax of Carvana offer? Use AutoTrader.com, Cars.com or CarGurus to find dealers that are selling cars similar to yours and call and ask for the Used Car Manager or Sales Manager and just simply share that you are interested in selling your car, and that you have an offer from CarMax or Carvana and you noticed they sell similar vehicles, so you were curious if they can beat your current offer. You might need to make 5 calls, but all it takes is one dealer to raise their hand and beat your offer and you have made more money on your vehicle, and have greater confidence that you got the most you can for your car, short of selling it via Private Party.

This becomes a win-win scenario. You get more for your car and chances are the dealer purchased your vehicle for less than they would have had to pay at a used car auction, after accounting for the auction fees and transportation expense etc.

Other Platforms to Consider

Another tactic to maximize your offer is to compare offers from multiple sources. In addition to Carvana and CarMax, consider Driveo, Kelley Blue Book Instant Cash Offer, AutoNation, and TrueCar. Comparing these offers helps you gauge the market value of your car and identify the best deal.

Presenting your vehicle in its best light can also enhance the offer. Accurate descriptions and high-quality photos showcasing a clean, well-maintained vehicle can positively impact the price.

Handling Existing Loans

If your car still has an outstanding loan, the dealer buying your car will need to pay off the loan to secure the title for reselling. For instance, if you sell your car for $15,000 and have an outstanding loan of $10,000, the dealer should give you a check for $5,000 and send the remaining $10,000 to your bank to clear the loan. However, it's crucial to follow up with your bank to ensure the loan is paid off in a timely manner.

Concluding Thoughts

While selling your car to Carvana or CarMax offers convenience, the price is non-negotiable. If you're looking for the ability to haggle over the price, an auto broker might be a suitable alternative. Auto brokers, like CarOracle, can help you navigate the car selling process and potentially secure a better deal. Moreover, if you find a buyer who plans to keep the car as part of their inventory, the vehicle might be worth more than standard auction values

For more insights into car valuations, check out this in-depth article on Understanding Kelley Blue Book on CarOracle.

Trade-Ins & Selling your Car FAQs

What are some tips for negotiating the best trade-in or selling price for my vehicle?

Before you start negotiations, have a clear understanding of your vehicle's market value using online tools. Keep your car clean and well-maintained, as a good first impression can increase its perceived value. When negotiating, don’t be afraid to walk away if the offer isn't what you want – there are always other dealers or buyers. And finally, remember to have all your paperwork organized, including maintenance records, which can add to the perceived value of the car.

What are some tips for negotiating the best trade-in or selling price for my vehicle?

Before you start negotiations, have a clear understanding of your vehicle's market value using online tools. Keep your car clean and well-maintained, as a good first impression can increase its perceived value. When negotiating, don’t be afraid to walk away if the offer isn't what you want – there are always other dealers or buyers. And finally, remember to have all your paperwork organized, including maintenance records, which can add to the perceived value of the car.

What are some tips for negotiating the best trade-in or selling price for my vehicle?

Before you start negotiations, have a clear understanding of your vehicle's market value using online tools. Keep your car clean and well-maintained, as a good first impression can increase its perceived value. When negotiating, don’t be afraid to walk away if the offer isn't what you want – there are always other dealers or buyers. And finally, remember to have all your paperwork organized, including maintenance records, which can add to the perceived value of the car.

If I want to sell my car to another private party, what should I consider?

When selling your car privately, it's crucial to price it correctly. Use valuation tools like Kelley Blue Book or Edmunds to get an estimate of your car's value. Prepare the car for sale by cleaning it thoroughly and considering small repairs that might increase its appeal. Also, make sure to have all necessary documents such as the title, service records, and a bill of sale. If there is an outstanding loan on the vehicle, this adds some complexity, as you won't have the title to sign over until the loan is paid off. If possible, working with a local bank where the loan is held could help in managing the payoff and title transfer process. Keep in mind that selling privately often takes longer than selling to a dealer and involves more coordination and negotiation with potential buyers.

If I want to sell my car to another private party, what should I consider?

When selling your car privately, it's crucial to price it correctly. Use valuation tools like Kelley Blue Book or Edmunds to get an estimate of your car's value. Prepare the car for sale by cleaning it thoroughly and considering small repairs that might increase its appeal. Also, make sure to have all necessary documents such as the title, service records, and a bill of sale. If there is an outstanding loan on the vehicle, this adds some complexity, as you won't have the title to sign over until the loan is paid off. If possible, working with a local bank where the loan is held could help in managing the payoff and title transfer process. Keep in mind that selling privately often takes longer than selling to a dealer and involves more coordination and negotiation with potential buyers.

If I want to sell my car to another private party, what should I consider?

When selling your car privately, it's crucial to price it correctly. Use valuation tools like Kelley Blue Book or Edmunds to get an estimate of your car's value. Prepare the car for sale by cleaning it thoroughly and considering small repairs that might increase its appeal. Also, make sure to have all necessary documents such as the title, service records, and a bill of sale. If there is an outstanding loan on the vehicle, this adds some complexity, as you won't have the title to sign over until the loan is paid off. If possible, working with a local bank where the loan is held could help in managing the payoff and title transfer process. Keep in mind that selling privately often takes longer than selling to a dealer and involves more coordination and negotiation with potential buyers.

What is Kelley Blue Book's Instant Cash Offer, and is it good?

Kelley Blue Book's Instant Cash Offer is a service where you can get an online quote for your car, which is valid for three days. This offer is based on information you provide about the car's condition and features, and it's validated by an inspection at a participating dealer. Kelley Blue Book serves as a middle-man in this process, as the transaction happens directly with a dealer who has enrolled in this service. It's a helpful tool to benchmark your car's value, but remember, the final offer could be different based on the dealer's physical inspection.

What is Kelley Blue Book's Instant Cash Offer, and is it good?

Kelley Blue Book's Instant Cash Offer is a service where you can get an online quote for your car, which is valid for three days. This offer is based on information you provide about the car's condition and features, and it's validated by an inspection at a participating dealer. Kelley Blue Book serves as a middle-man in this process, as the transaction happens directly with a dealer who has enrolled in this service. It's a helpful tool to benchmark your car's value, but remember, the final offer could be different based on the dealer's physical inspection.

What is Kelley Blue Book's Instant Cash Offer, and is it good?

Kelley Blue Book's Instant Cash Offer is a service where you can get an online quote for your car, which is valid for three days. This offer is based on information you provide about the car's condition and features, and it's validated by an inspection at a participating dealer. Kelley Blue Book serves as a middle-man in this process, as the transaction happens directly with a dealer who has enrolled in this service. It's a helpful tool to benchmark your car's value, but remember, the final offer could be different based on the dealer's physical inspection.

How does Kelley Blue Book and Black Book come up with their trade-in values?

Kelley Blue Book and Black Book determine trade-in values using extensive data gathered from wholesale auctions, dealer sales, and rental companies. They take into account factors like the vehicle's age, mileage, overall condition, equipment levels, and the current demand and supply for that particular make and model in the market. Wholesale auction data is a foundational element in their valuations as it's standardized and provides accurate details of the vehicle condition, making it easier for their algorithms to determine market factors. However, keep in mind that these are estimates, and actual trade-in offers can vary based on the individual dealer's interest in your vehicle.

How does Kelley Blue Book and Black Book come up with their trade-in values?

Kelley Blue Book and Black Book determine trade-in values using extensive data gathered from wholesale auctions, dealer sales, and rental companies. They take into account factors like the vehicle's age, mileage, overall condition, equipment levels, and the current demand and supply for that particular make and model in the market. Wholesale auction data is a foundational element in their valuations as it's standardized and provides accurate details of the vehicle condition, making it easier for their algorithms to determine market factors. However, keep in mind that these are estimates, and actual trade-in offers can vary based on the individual dealer's interest in your vehicle.

How does Kelley Blue Book and Black Book come up with their trade-in values?

Kelley Blue Book and Black Book determine trade-in values using extensive data gathered from wholesale auctions, dealer sales, and rental companies. They take into account factors like the vehicle's age, mileage, overall condition, equipment levels, and the current demand and supply for that particular make and model in the market. Wholesale auction data is a foundational element in their valuations as it's standardized and provides accurate details of the vehicle condition, making it easier for their algorithms to determine market factors. However, keep in mind that these are estimates, and actual trade-in offers can vary based on the individual dealer's interest in your vehicle.

What is a vehicle trade-in vs. selling it directly to a dealer?

A vehicle trade-in occurs when you're buying a new or used vehicle from a dealership and you give your current vehicle to the dealership as part of the payment. The dealership will appraise your vehicle and deduct this from the price of the new or used vehicle you're purchasing. This is often an easier path if there is an outstanding loan on the vehicle, as dealerships are accustomed to working through loan payoffs and handling title transfers.

Selling your vehicle directly to a dealer, on the other hand, means you're simply selling yours without buying another. The key advantage is that you can shop around and take the best offer, as your vehicle may be more desirable to some dealers than others. However, in states like Arizona where sales tax is only paid on the difference between the trade-in and the vehicle purchase price, selling directly could mean missing out on this tax advantage.

What is a vehicle trade-in vs. selling it directly to a dealer?

A vehicle trade-in occurs when you're buying a new or used vehicle from a dealership and you give your current vehicle to the dealership as part of the payment. The dealership will appraise your vehicle and deduct this from the price of the new or used vehicle you're purchasing. This is often an easier path if there is an outstanding loan on the vehicle, as dealerships are accustomed to working through loan payoffs and handling title transfers.

Selling your vehicle directly to a dealer, on the other hand, means you're simply selling yours without buying another. The key advantage is that you can shop around and take the best offer, as your vehicle may be more desirable to some dealers than others. However, in states like Arizona where sales tax is only paid on the difference between the trade-in and the vehicle purchase price, selling directly could mean missing out on this tax advantage.

What is a vehicle trade-in vs. selling it directly to a dealer?

A vehicle trade-in occurs when you're buying a new or used vehicle from a dealership and you give your current vehicle to the dealership as part of the payment. The dealership will appraise your vehicle and deduct this from the price of the new or used vehicle you're purchasing. This is often an easier path if there is an outstanding loan on the vehicle, as dealerships are accustomed to working through loan payoffs and handling title transfers.

Selling your vehicle directly to a dealer, on the other hand, means you're simply selling yours without buying another. The key advantage is that you can shop around and take the best offer, as your vehicle may be more desirable to some dealers than others. However, in states like Arizona where sales tax is only paid on the difference between the trade-in and the vehicle purchase price, selling directly could mean missing out on this tax advantage.

Dive Even Deeper into Trade-Ins & Selling your Car

Dive Even Deeper into Trade-Ins & Selling your Car

Dive Even Deeper into Trade-Ins & Selling your Car

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CarOracle is a California-licensed automotive dealer, License No: 43082, with an autobroker's endorsement, enabling us to represent consumers in the purchase or leasing of new and used vehicles.

©2024 CarOracle. All rights reserved

CarOracle Logo

CarOracle is a California-licensed automotive dealer, License No: 43082, with an autobroker's endorsement, enabling us to represent consumers in the purchase or leasing of new and used vehicles.

©2024 CarOracle. All rights reserved

CarOracle Logo

CarOracle is a California-licensed automotive dealer, License No: 43082, with an autobroker's endorsement, enabling us to represent consumers in the purchase or leasing of new and used vehicles.

©2024 CarOracle. All rights reserved