Nearly every buyer wants to physically inspect a car before buying it. There are many factors to consider before inviting a buyer to come to take a look at the vehicle. If you sell privately, your car may be located at your home, condo or apartment complex, which is an important factor to consider when showing to buyers.

It is always important to consider your safety when inviting strangers to your home, so if you feel safer meeting the potential buyer in another place at a specific time, that might also work.

Best Practices for Showing Your Car to Potential Buyers
woman showing car - showing your car to potential buyers

If you’re selling your car online, the best way to show your car to a buyer is to provide high-quality photos. Show the interior, exterior and under the hood.

If you can, take a clear video walking around the vehicle, opening the doors and turning on the battery. The more the buyer can see online, the more likely it is to get serious buyers to come to see the car in person.  

You might be wondering, what if I need to show my car to a buyer in person? Most buyers want to take the car for a test drive before making any offers to buy it.

It is important to screen buyers carefully before meeting in person to ensure the safety of yourself and your family. It’s best to have a discussion beforehand, whether by phone, email or text, to get an idea of how serious they are about purchasing the vehicle. Look for any red flags, and be sure to discuss all COVID-19-related safety measures you each need to take.

When it comes to test driving the vehicle, set some boundaries and expectations for security purposes. For example, you are within your right to ask a buyer to wear a face mask when entering your vehicle.

If you decide to show your car in person, consider these tips for maximum safety:

  • Bring a friend or family member with you to show the car.
  • Take a photo of the buyer’s license plate or driver’s license in case of theft or any accidents while test driving.
  • Answer all questions the buyer asks.
  • Avoid accepting the first offer; tell the buyer you will be in touch. 
  • Bring the most important documents with you (or a copy) so the potential buyer can be sure everything is up to date and the car is in good condition.

You will probably need to show your car on more than one occasion, so make sure you stay calm and let the buyers get in touch with you afterward.