Step 2: Price Your Car Competitively
Once you have surveyed the on-line classified ads, use KBB to determine the fair value of your car. Edmunds.com adjusts its TMV prices for mileage, color, region, options and condition.
There are always some exceptions to the rules of pricing, so you should follow your intuition. And be sure to leave a little wiggle room in your asking price. Ask for slightly more money than you are actually willing to accept. If you want to get $12,000 for the car, you should list the car at $13,500. People tend to negotiate in big chunks ($500-$1,000) rather than small increments ($100-$200). That way, when a person makes you a lower offer, it will be closer to your actual price, rather than below it.
You may have noticed how creative used-car dealers get in pricing cars. Their prices usually end in “995,” as in $12,995. Are we not supposed to notice that the car basically costs $13,000? There is a lot of psychology in setting prices. A product that doesn’t sell well at $20 might jump off the shelf at $19.95.
On the other hand, as a private party seller, you don’t want to look like a car dealer. Therefore, you might want to take a simple approach and set your price at a round figure such as $14,000 or $13,500.