Just because you’re junking your car, doesn’t mean you should be lazy about the process. If you want to maximize your ROI and get the most money you possibly can for your vehicle, there are some important steps you must take. Otherwise, you could end up getting ripped off.

4 Tips to Get More for Your Junk Car

As with just about every market for physical goods and commodities, the amount you get in return for a junk vehicle can vary rather dramatically. In extreme cases, the difference in price could even be in the thousands. So it stands to reason that you’d take the time and effort to do your due diligence and maximize your return. Here are a few tips for doing just that:

1. Prepare the Vehicle

The first step is to prepare your vehicle. There are a number of things you’re required to do by law, as well as some optional steps you can take to make the process go as smoothly as possible.

  • For starters, your vehicle has to be in one piece. No junkyard is going to take a bunch of parts piled onto a trailer. They buy complete junk cars. This doesn’t mean it can’t be missing a part here and there, but it needs four tires, doors, and a full frame from bumper to bumper.
  • Remove all personal belongings from the vehicle. This includes paperwork, CDs, books, sunglasses, carseats, and anything else you’ve collected over the years. Once you sell your vehicle to a junkyard, you’ll have a hard time getting back inside.
  • Remove the license plate from your car and be sure to return it to your local DMV. (Each state has its own rules on how to do this, so be sure to contact your DMV for more information.)

Resist the temptation to fix up your car and make it look nice. Unlike selling a car to an individual or dealer, repairs and maintenance add no value to your vehicle. Junkyards are looking at the price of scrap metal and nothing more.

2. Call Multiple Junkyards

As mentioned, prices can vary significantly from one junk car buyer to the next. If you want to get the most bang for your buck, spend a few minutes calling different junkyards.

As a rule of thumb, look for a national junkyard. These companies tend to have more brand recognition and stability. They also tend to pay cash on the spot, which small, unscrupulous junkyards don’t always do. These companies - like JunkACar - can also help you navigate complicated issues like selling a flood or water-damaged vehicle, figuring out what to do when the title is missing, or handling other complicated issues.

3. Get Documentation in Order

It’s absolutely imperative that you get your documentation and paperwork in order before junking your vehicle. You’ll need your title, registration, and insurance information (if applicable). There are still options for junking your vehicle even if you’re missing these documents, but it’s a whole lot quicker and easier if they’re accessible.

4. Deliver Your Own Vehicle

Junkyards often charge a fee for picking up your vehicle. Others will offer to tow your car away for “free.” In either case, you’re paying for this service. Most junkyards will give you a bit more in return for your car if you offer to bring it to them. (This isn’t always the case, but it doesn’t hurt to ask.)

Putting it All Together

You aren’t going to get rich junking your car, but that doesn’t mean you should unload 3,000 pounds of steel for a couple of dollars, a wink, and a smile. If you’re going to take the time to sell your junk car, do your research and look for ways to get more in return.

Author's Bio: 

My name is Jessica and I am an independent journalist, freelance blogger, and technology junkie with a passion for music, arts, and the outdoors. One of my greatest passions and joy is assisting communities and business owners. My utmost desire is to help people and business owners to succeed and prosper in their personal and business affairs. I share, comment, write and edit popular news stories.