If you want to sell your car privately but you’re worried about the safety of the transaction, check out carzar.co.za – an online second-hand car buyer that aims to fill the space between selling to an individual, which comes with inherent risks, or trading your car in at a dealership and losing money.
On the website, you just fill in your car’s details, and the online company uses national data and statistics to provide a free quote, which is generated in seconds.
The quote is subject to a car inspection, but if you are happy to proceed after the inspection and you agree to the price offered, CarZar will buy the car from you, paying you cash on the same day.
Having recently bought and sold second-hand cars, I tested the quote system and the pricing seemed fair – somewhere between what a dealer would pay and what you could get by selling privately to an individual.
Technically, you could probably get more for your car if you sold to an individual, but then you need to decide if it’s worth the hassle and risk.
I liked the fact that there was a no-obligation quote, so you can at least get an idea of the amount that you could get for your car – although the condition of the car may affect that price on inspection.
Although I didn’t actually sell a car, the company’s claim that the paperwork would only take half an hour is also an attractive proposition.
One of the risks of selling privately is that the new owner has 30 days after the purchase to transfer ownership, but if he gets any fines within that period, the seller is still liable.
Rob Thompsett, relationship manager at CarZar, says consumers still do not fully understand why there is such a big difference in price for a trade-in compared with the price you get when selling privately or through an online sales facilitator.
“CarZar was launched for those South Africans who prefer to find a convenient and easy way to sell their car and have cash in hand to buy their new vehicle without losing any value when trading the old car in.
"There is often a perception that the paperwork associated with selling a car is cumbersome, but it is actually a pretty fast process and can be completed in half an hour.”
Thompsett says that, while trading in your old car for a new one has a major convenience factor, consumers tend to lose thousands of rands in the process.
“If you have a cash deposit, you are able to negotiate a far better deal for yourself. With a trade-in, the dealer has to make its mark-up on your vehicle, so the deal has less flexibility.”