Buying Used Auto Parts

Buying used auto parts is usually an inexpensive alternative to buying new auto parts from your local car parts retailer or an on-line store. It may take some time and creativity to find the exact part, so be patient as there are many different ways to accomplish this goal. But, they fall into three basic approaches: junk yards, classified ads and on-line stores. Let’s look at each one.

Junk Yards

There is usually one part of the city where most of the salvage yards are located. These yards often sell used auto parts for low prices if you are able to remove the needed part yourself from one of their wrecked cars or trucks. And, you will need your own tools. Each junk yard is different so be flexible and be prepared to negotiate as you may be able to purchase whole assemblies as well as a series of parts. Call in advance about pricing and car/part availability. Lastly, you should verify the terms and conditions of the sale and any return policy. Not everything goes as planned.

Classified Ads

Traditionally, used auto parts could be found in the classified ads section of your local newspaper or grocery store pamphlet/publication. Today, you can add eBay, Craigslist and a few more such websites to this category. Depending on the part, the buyer will need to verify that the current condition will not affect its ability to operate properly as most of these sellers (with the exception of eBay) are anonymous to the buyer. Which means, no track record of their relationship with past buyers. If you are using eBay, be sure to check out the seller’s feedback ratings before buying any used auto part. The feedback ratings of buyers can provide you with insight into a seller’s reputation, reliability and selling history. And return policy.

On-line Stores

This newest method can be a very fast and convenient way to locate and purchase a specific auto part. Prices, descriptions, pictures and expanded details are usually available via a searchable database. Be sure to be creative when entering your search keywords so the search engine will give you the results you are seeking. The more exact the keyword match, the better will be the results.

In today’s marketplace, there are lots of options for used auto parts buyers. Old school and new. With a little effort, the exact part for your car will be available.

How to Sell Your Car Part 2: How to Find Buyers

Today, the preparations are over and you are ready to locate some buyers.

Notice that I said you are ready to “locate buyers” instead of “advertise your car.” This is an important and intentional distinction. There is a big difference between putting a for sale sign in the window and being proactive about selling your vehicle.

“For Sale” signs won’t sell your car. You have to sell your car. To do that, you have to locate a buyer.

The first step in locating buyers is to make yourself easy to find.

Put your car everywhere. eBay, Craigslist, Cars.com, AutoTrader, Twitter, Facebook, your blog, your church bulletin board, your bulletin board at work, the bulletin board at the gym, and on and on.

Many of the listing sights, such as Cars.com, will allow you to print up a really attractive flyer for your listing. It should be in color, have pictures, and have all necessary information including the price you decided on in my previous article on preparing sell your car.

Make sure all of your listings are consistent and put as many pictures up as the site will permit. Make sure you take lots of clear pictures and be prepared to e-mail more as necessary.

The next step in locating buyers is talking to people.

I was shocked that after only a couple of months with a Facebook account, I had over 200 “friends.” Do I really know 200 people? I guess so. You probably do to. Make it your goal that every one of those people will know that you have a car for sale. Every. One.

Even though you put flyers everywhere, remember that flyers aren’t responsible for selling your car either. Putting up flyers isn’t the end goal, selling the car is. So be proactive.

Send out an e-mail blast to your friends with a few moderately sized photos. Talk to everyone at work. Talk to everyone at the gym. Talk to everyone at the church. Don’t be shy.

Ask them, “Did you see my flyer on the bulletin board? I’m selling my 2002 Wrangler, if you know anyone.” That’s it! How much time did that take? Two seconds? No pressure. No sales tactics. And it will be worth while when you hear, “You know, my cousin is looking for one of those. I’ll take him a flyer.”

The final step in locating buyers is following up.

If someone e-mails you, e-mail them back. If someone calls you, call them back. If someone is taking a flyer to their cousin, ask how that went and see if you can get their e-mail to send some more photos.

You don’t have to be obnoxious or annoying, but you also don’t have to wait for someone to beg you for your car before you actually try to sell it.

If you follow these three steps, you shouldn’t have any trouble locating buyers for your well priced, clean, and inspected vehicle.

Next step, what to do once you have a buyer.