Whether you want to trade in your old model for an upgraded, more recent car, or need to upscale to a larger capacity vehicle due to a growing family, it’s easy to buy and sell cars in the UAE. You have two main routes to market – either you can advertise privately in the classifieds, or you can sell your car to a dealer. Both have their pros and cons, so we’ve put together a quick guide on how to sell a car in the UAE and get the best deal.
For years, most people sold their car in the UAE through the small ads or classifieds. Selling a car online is also popular, but it has one major drawback – everyone else is doing it too! That means your car gets lost in a sea of competitors, all trying to attract the attention of a limited number of buyers.
If you want to buy and sell cars in the UAE and can afford to hold on for the right buyer, then selling through private ads will theoretically get you the best price. However, the buyer is in charge of the process, so you’ll find yourself waiting for phone calls or texts, for prospective buyers to turn up for a test drive, or dealing with buyers who haggle hard and still potentially walk away from the deal.
That’s a lot of messing around for a small return, which is why it’s becoming less appealing to sell your car through private ads.
If you Google ‘sell my car UAE’ or ‘Selling cars in Dubai’, then you’ll get plenty of online advice telling you that dealership sales are the way to go. They buy used cars in the UAE all the time, and are always looking for good quality pre-owned vehicles to keep their showrooms full.
The old myth that you’ll get a lower price at a dealership is now debunked – dealers want good quality stock, so they offer the true market value, even if your car is a little older. So you won’t lose out financially if you sell to a dealership, and if you take into account the cost of advertising your car privately (as well as the cost of your time and effort in selling your car), then it’s actually more cost-effective to sell to a dealer than to go private.
If you’ve taken a bank loan out to buy a car in Dubai, and there’s still outstanding finance, then it needs to be cleared. You can’t transfer ownership unless the lending bank tells the RTA that it’s acceptable for the sale to go ahead.
If you’re selling privately then this could be a big stumbling block to getting the deal over the line. However, if you sell to a dealer then they have the ability to take care of the finance paperwork for you, and quickly, too. That means there’s no delay in selling your car.
Remember that your car also has to pass the RTA’s annual roadworthiness inspection, and you’ll need to ensure that your certificate is up to date before you advertise your car for sale.
If you can afford to wait, are prepared for dealing with time-wasters and ‘looky-Lous’ who aren’t serious about buying your car, and don’t mind covering the cost of advertising yourself, then a private sale is a perfectly acceptable way to sell a car in the UAE.
If, however, you want to get the deal done quickly, are happy to take the market value for your car, and already have your eye on a replacement car, then selling your car to a UAE dealership is the best option.