Automotive

If dealers are asking $x, as a private seller I should ask $x minus...?

  • Last Updated:
  • May 9th, 2020 2:21 pm
[OP]
Sr. Member
Jun 17, 2003
676 posts
320 upvotes
Toronto

If dealers are asking $x, as a private seller I should ask $x minus...?

I want to sell my 2016 Kia Sorento EX, and I'm not going to be replacing it, so it makes no sense to trade-in. Dealers on Kijiji are advertising ~$19-21k asking price for Sorentos with comparable kms.
What price should I ask? What should I expect to negotiate to close the sale? Downtown Toronto, for what it's worth.
37 replies
Deal Expert
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Feb 11, 2007
15639 posts
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Oakville
andjules wrote: I want to sell my 2016 Kia Sorento EX, and I'm not going to be replacing it, so it makes no sense to trade-in. Dealers on Kijiji are advertising ~$19-21k asking price for Sorentos with comparable kms.
What price should I ask? What should I expect to negotiate to close the sale? Downtown Toronto, for what it's worth.
Well, technically people can save 13% on tax by trading in, so you have that against you.
Deal Fanatic
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Jul 26, 2007
5277 posts
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Toronto
If you want to sell it faster then other people in Kijiji, undercut the lowest seller so $18,999? Where as, if you want to sell it to the dealer directly, I would assume they would low-ball you even moreso when you were to trade-in to purchase another car. Don't freakout if they offer you $10k.
Deal Addict
Sep 3, 2005
3151 posts
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Vaughan
If it were me, i'd price it around the same price as dealers. Reason being, people are going to make offers. If you price it lower, same people are still going to make offers. Nobody ever wants to pay the price listed, even if its a good deal.

So for example. You price it for $20k, some people might offer you $17-$18k. If you price it at $17.5k, some peole may offer $14-15k.

Always start high and work your way down. If you start low, you may not get the price your looking for.
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[OP]
Sr. Member
Jun 17, 2003
676 posts
320 upvotes
Toronto
engineered wrote: Well, technically people can save 13% on tax by trading in, so you have that against you.
agreed, (at least they save it on the difference).
peteryorkuca wrote: Where as, if you want to sell it to the dealer directly, I would assume they would low-ball you even moreso when you were to trade-in to purchase another car. Don't freakout if they offer you $10k.
Not selling to the dealer, for exactly that reason.
To make a living, dealer has to pay below market value or sell above market value, and they always aim to do both.
phuviano wrote: If it were me, i'd price it around the same price as dealers. Reason being, people are going to make offers.
You're right about offers, but you have to entice people to make offers, and and given two cars at the same price, one sold by a private stranger on Kijiji who presumably has no mechanical expertise, no service department, or business interest in protecting their reputation vs a professional dealer who the buyer has consumer protections against… the private seller is always at a disadvantage in terms of attracting buyers/offers. The question is: how big of a discount will entice people to buy privately?
Deal Addict
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Aug 3, 2009
1984 posts
445 upvotes
Nova Scotia
Remember almost everyone buying is financing it through the dealer and either can't or can't be bothered to get financing elsewhere. That is a major disadvantage and you need to remember the average buyer is an average Canadian, and this financially unsavvy.

I'd reduce 25% and see what happens.
Jr. Member
May 2, 2020
129 posts
127 upvotes
Toronto
I would list it for the average price of what dealers are selling a similar condition vehicle.

A lot of people do not like to finance at the 5.99% rate that dealerships offer through banks.

A lot of people tend to get LOCs at very low rates and finance their cars that way

Also, a lot of people are wary about some of the tactics dealerships use to get away with doing the bare minimum on used cars to be able to sell them.

Use those to your advantage.
Blessed are the flexible, for they shall never be bent out of shape
Sr. Member
Aug 8, 2005
528 posts
151 upvotes
Toronto
Downsides of private seller

No 13% tax savings
Unknown seller and history
Dealers have some rules to follow/protections ie can’t sell stolen cars. Buyer doesn’t get these protections privately.
Curbsiders exist

If I’m taking these risks (first one is a 13% cost alone!) then I will want 20-25% off

Dealers can negotiate price too so don’t price high expecting bargaining. If they are asking 19 you should be at 14,900-15,900
Deal Addict
Nov 14, 2001
1233 posts
166 upvotes
Mississauga
The problem with selling privately is that not many people have that kind of cash lying around. Also, dealers offer 0% financing sometimes to buying privately is not worth it. That was my experience last year trying to sell my car. Ended up trading it in.

Next day dealer added $8K to the price they paid me and the car was sold in a week. I had it on Autotrader for months with not a single phone call.
Deal Addict
Dec 26, 2009
2751 posts
1422 upvotes
To even consider a private sale, I'd expect a noticeable discount over dealers. I've bought three used cars privately over the years, all were approx. 20-30% lower in asking price compared to a dealership for similar condition and mileage, though I'd expect a smaller spread for newer vehicles.

Things were also better before HST because there was no PST on private vehicle sales, however that advantage is gone now.
Last edited by RubberCheese on May 7th, 2020 3:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Newbie
Aug 24, 2009
50 posts
61 upvotes
In reality you will not sell for the same price as a dealer. You can try and list it for similar price and wait for the right buyer, if you're not in a rush.
But you will quickly learn about the wonderful world of people on kijiji.

So list it 10% cheaper than dealers to get people interested and be prepared to settle on a slightly lower price.
Deal Fanatic
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Apr 23, 2007
9827 posts
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Mississauga
art444 wrote: In reality you will not sell for the same price as a dealer. You can try and list it for similar price and wait for the right buyer, if you're not in a rush.
But you will quickly learn about the wonderful world of people on kijiji.
Learning now....Selling a car for $6,500.

Kijiji replies;
$2,000 cash now
Trade for car with 200,000KM
RFD 43-0-0
Ebay 35-0-0
|Dance.Flirt.Music.Chill|
Jr. Member
May 31, 2017
174 posts
244 upvotes
Anyone telling you to list it 25% under the dealer prices isn't helping your cause...you'll end up 30-40% under dealer prices by the time you get offers and negotiate.
The tax savings issue everyone is referring to don't really matter unless the buyer has a car they need to trade in or don't want to sell privately. You don't need another car so it's an irrelevant point for you...you aren't losing that value because you aren't buying another car regardless.

If selling privately then my thought would be to start at around 8% -12% under the EQUIVALENT dealer price - since that's what people will likely end up around after negotiating at the dealer. So start there on your listing and know you'll probably end up negotiating down from there. Know the trade in value of your vehicle and be sure to get a price ABOVE that...basically, be between trade in value and dealer prices at the end of the day. Be realistic about your cars value...lots of people have a tendency to inflate the value of stuff they own. Be realistic about your value vs. the listings you're comparing against and compare to listings relatively local to your location. If you don't get any "bites" you can always re-list at a lower number...

Keep your car CLEAN inside and out and make sure you get your service history to show potential buyers. Expect offers 20% under what you list for and that you'll probably settle in the rough middle (hopefully better then 20% under dealer prices); depending on condition, if you have service history, your negotiating skills, etc. Be aware some buyers will get you to a number, show up with cash and try to get you to take a lessor amount for cash in hand...common tactic from the Kijiji and yard sale crowds. Don't accept that, let them walk away if they try it...the kind of person that tries to reneg on an agreed deal deserves to never win anything ever. A savvy buyer will ask for an inspection and if anything comes up bad they'll try to get you to knock it off the price...if you are realistic in the beginning at setting the price, and transparent about any issues, you can account for it up front in the negotiation and control that conversation better there. You can always go down in price...you can never go up. This isn't real estate where you can list low and start a bidding war for a higher price...that's why LISTING at 25% under dealer equivalent prices is likely just leaving money on the table. You may end up there...don't start there.

You're vehicle is similar to an old one I had. We traded in a 2015 Santa Fe last year (so similar/same vehicle and age at that time)...we managed to get $14,800 on trade in and offers for the trade in ranged from $10,800K (from the original Hyundai dealer no less and they were including the tax savings in their number) to $15,500K (with our tax savings over and above that value)...lots of dealers these days give you trade in values and "include" the tax savings on the new vehicle in the price for the trade in...very sketchy. We ultimately took the slightly lower offer from a different dealer who offered some other perks of greater value...and the rep there was the only real transparent honest guy we met after visiting 6-7 dealerships. Ours was in mint condition for it's mileage (which was higher then average)...at a later visit they said it didn't even need cleaning or work before they re-sold it. They had it listed for around $18,900 and it was gone in a week...no idea what they got for it but probably safe to assume it was likely just over $17K. Given the similarity between the Sorento and Santa Fe I hope that helps...and that the current virus issues and expected price drops from dealers doesn't hurt your cause.
Deal Addict
Sep 3, 2005
3151 posts
794 upvotes
Vaughan
andjules wrote: You're right about offers, but you have to entice people to make offers, and and given two cars at the same price, one sold by a private stranger on Kijiji who presumably has no mechanical expertise, no service department, or business interest in protecting their reputation vs a professional dealer who the buyer has consumer protections against… the private seller is always at a disadvantage in terms of attracting buyers/offers. The question is: how big of a discount will entice people to buy privately?
If you don't want to base your initial price on dealer prices, then match other private sellers. Its not just price that entices people. When you try to entice people based purely on price, you'll get even more low ballers, and time wasters. You might get someone serious though, but mostly time wasters. You are enticing the wrong crowd if you price it too low.

Also, colour of vehicle may play a role in whether it sells or not. I would say majority of people are ok with black, white, and silver/grey.

At the end of the day, its your vehicle, start the selling price at whatever you think is fair. Not my car, not my money.
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Sr. Member
Oct 3, 2017
857 posts
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Getting the price you want selling privately can be done but it takes time, effort and patience.

And interacting with a lot of people and having them test drive it (during a pandemic).

So if you can spend 3 to 6 months (and the insurance costs during that time) waiting for the "right" buyer you probably can get close to a dealer price.

If the car pristine, has full service records with everything done on time, no accidents, low mileage, rust proofed, throw in for free your winter tires mounted on wheels and you have great photos and ad description you have a good chance with time and patience.

I would also price it right and put FIRM on the pricing in the ad.

The financing aspect reduces your potential market by 90% if not more.

I got stubborn a while back and spent 6 months selling a car that ticked all the boxes. Whatever extra I got by being stubborn was negated by paying insurance for 6 months longer.

With covid-19 no way would I do that now.
Deal Expert
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Feb 11, 2007
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Oakville
If you do sell to dealer, strip any extras/add-ons from the car and sell them separately. Things like winter tires, floor mats, roof racks, oil/air/cabin filters, etc. Dealers typically won't give you much if anything for them, and you can get much more on kijiji.
Deal Addict
Nov 12, 2004
2231 posts
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Hometown
andjules wrote: agreed, (at least they save it on the difference).


Not selling to the dealer, for exactly that reason.
To make a living, dealer has to pay below market value or sell above market value, and they always aim to do both.


You're right about offers, but you have to entice people to make offers, and and given two cars at the same price, one sold by a private stranger on Kijiji who presumably has no mechanical expertise, no service department, or business interest in protecting their reputation vs a professional dealer who the buyer has consumer protections against… the private seller is always at a disadvantage in terms of attracting buyers/offers. The question is: how big of a discount will entice people to buy privately?
My opinion on what makes a private sale enticing on a vehicle less than 5 yrs old...

If you have good service records especially with an exploder engine in any Hyundai/Kia let prospective buyers KNOW. Hyundai will fix the engine free of charge up to 10 yrs and 200K but only if the vehicle had a good oil maintenance history that can be PROVEN.

If you have remaining warranty mention and learn how the buyer can transfer it.

Offer to certify the vehicle once a firm offer is made. This is when having a good relationship with a shop can help you. If you have the vehicle pre-inspected yourself so you know what certification will cost. You might find that the shop knows of people looking for a good vehicle and they can connect you with them.

Also allow prospective buyers to pay for their mechanic to check it out, but that will require some trust and effort on your part. Again having a good relationship with a shop can help you as you can maybe convince the shop to let another mechanic view the vehicle there....

Be realistic on price.... Everybody thinks their car is invaluable when they are selling it...

Lastly if you can honestly say it has no accidents not just no reported accidents say so.

When a buyer asks why should I buy your vehicle over another one they are looking at. If you can honestly say you KNOW your vehicle has not been in any accidents... That you have service records that show how well you have maintained it, and you are open to having their mechanic inspect the vehicle at their cost anytime. It can help them make up their mind to buy yours instead of some rando curb sider special without the same pedigree.
Deal Expert
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Oct 26, 2003
34955 posts
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Winnipeg
List on both autotrader and kijiji for maximum exposure, look for similar vehicle pricing and price yours accordingly, take into account of the trade-in offer price by the dealer if you want. You don't need to deal with safeties when trading a vehicle to the dealer, but private buyer will highly likely request a safety.
Newbie
Jan 16, 2017
38 posts
14 upvotes
AutoTrader has a tool that provides you with a range based on vehicle specs and location. It is supposed to be based on actual selling prices, but I'm not sure where the data comes from. Tried it for one of my vehicles and it provided a number around what I would have expected. Will give you a pretty good idea on value.

Link --> What is my car worth?

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