Hidden fees to watch for when selling your car

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5 min read

Selling a car is not usually a quick process. Even deciding on how to sell a car can be a struggle—do you list it yourself? Go to a dealership?  Trade it in?

It can turn out to be very time consuming—especially if you’re doing all the work yourself. First you’ve got to list it, then deal with communications from potential buyers, arrange viewings, delivery…then, just when you think you’ve got it in the bag, a deal can fall through. And as they say, time is money…

And the trouble is, there are often a ton of hidden expenses that pop up once you start the process. It can be unexpectedly expensive to sell a car. Let’s take a quick look at the extra costs that can pop up, so hopefully you dodge any surprises.

listing fees

You may truly believe your car is awesome, but you know how opinions are. Finding someone to see its worth as you do can be harder than you think. Drumming up interest is time-consuming and often requires listing your vehicle in a number of places.Autotrader charges between $25-90 for an ad. Ebay motors costs a similar amount. The cheaper options cost around $6 a month.

There are also free options out there. Craiglist is the most widely used. It does get a lot of traffic, but can be unreliable. People can use it anonymously, which increases the amount of scams and time wasters. On Facebook Marketplace sellers are linked to their Facebook profile, which makes it a bit less risky, but it isn’t as widely used, so it can be a bit slow going.

If you don’t want to pay to list your car, you might find you need to post across a number of free platforms before you find a buyer.

car washes

It’s worth noting that a car that hasn’t been kept in good condition could get a lower offer from a buyer. But either way, before you go ahead with a sale, you should make sure the buyer is happy to accept your car “as is.” If not, you may need to fork out to have your car cleaned inside and out before they take it off your hands—or charge you for the expense of doing it themselves.


Most people want to buy a car in good working order. To get a good price—or to get a sale at all—you will likely need to catch up on any outstanding repairs. This could be a minor expense, such as fixing a headlight, or, if the problem is more substantial, it could be pretty pricey.

dmv document request fees

In almost all cases you will need to provide your car title documentation in order to sell your car. If you don’t have it handy, you’ll have to request it from the DMV, which can cost between $5-20 depending on your state.

If you don’t have your car title and want to sell your car to Peddle, let us know. We can help you find it. If you can’t, we can still give you an offer (though it will be lower) as long as you can provide alternative documentation of ownership.


Used car scams have been on the rise and if you are selling a car online you need to watch out for dodgy buyers with too-good-to-be-true offers. Sometimes buyers will make an amazing offer but ask you to pay for delivery and fees before making off with the cash. Or you get a fake call from the listing site asking for a fee to connect you with buyers that have been looking at the car. You’ve gotta keep your wits about you.

losing out on negotiations

Negotiating a good price for your car can be tough and inexperienced sellers can often get hustled out of cash by pushy buyers. There are lots of reasons why you might not feel comfortable haggling over the price—especially if you are unfamiliar with the market.

Who knew getting cash for cars could be so expensive? At Peddle, we want to make it easy to get cash for cars—our instant offer system means you can get a quote in minutes without leaving your couch.

We don’t have any charges, we don’t mind if your car is dirty (or broken down completely!) and we have a customer service team on call to help you through the process. These guys are quick to respond, answer your questions and really do love solving any problems you might have (it’s a world away from the wild west of online listing sites). Just check out the reviews

We’ll even come and pick up that car for you, wherever you are. And when we do, we’ll be the only ones handing over any cash. Does that sound like easy money? (We think so.)