Should I Sell My Car to CarMax?

Should I sell to CarMax banner

Looking to sell your used vehicle? Wanna know how much your used car is worth? Wondering whether you should sell your car to CarMax? Here’s all of the info you need to know, including the pros and cons of selling to this used car dealer.

CarMax is a big name in the used car market. It has over 200 locations across the country and sold around 1.5 million vehicles last year.

Selling Your Used Car to CarMax

  1. CarMax buys used cars from consumers, offering a price based on the make, model, year and miles. These offers are contingent upon a rigorous inspection.
  2. CarMax puts cars through a reconditioning process, repairing and replacing any parts that don’t meet their standards.
  3. Once ready for retail sale, these cars are sold at CarMax stores, where consumers can see them in person and inspect the condition personally.
used car lot at CarMax

If you’re ready to switch cars, there are lots of great reasons to sell a used car to CarMax. There are downsides too, though.

So, to make sure you go into the process understanding what to expect, here are the pros and cons of selling your car to CarMax.

The Pros of Selling on CarMax

Easy to Sell a Car with Mechanical Issues

mechanic holding car parts

If your vehicle requires a bunch of mechanical work, you may have a tough time convincing a private buyer to take it off your hands without first making some repairs.

The good news is that CarMax may buy your car regardless of the mechanical condition. So even if your vehicle has seen better days, it’s unlikely that CarMax would decline to buy it from you. However, you might not get very much for your vehicle if a ton of work needs to be done to make it sellable.

Easy to Sell Unpopular Models

It’s easy to sell an unpopular used car to CarMax.

You might struggle to find a private buyer for unwanted or undesirable makes and models, but CarMax will most likely make an offer to purchase your unpopular car. This is because when it comes to nationwide locations, many stores need to stock up on inventory, so they may be a little less picky about what brand or model you’re selling. But be warned, you may not get very much cash for your car at CarMax if they think it’s not in high demand.

hiding a car style

Close-ish Locations to Most

Since Carmax has numerous locations, most people are never more than a couple of hours away. So, there will always be a Carmax nearby that can inspect your vehicle, give you an offer, and then complete all necessary paperwork.

The Cons of Selling on CarMax

As many advantages as there may seem to be, there are still some big disadvantages to selling your car this way. Here’s why you shouldn’t sell your car to CarMax.

You Get Less Money for Your Vehicle

money is going down

Carmax is a used car dealer. They are in business to buy your car for less so they can find a buyer and sell it for more. Simply put, you will not get the most money for your car by selling it to a dealer.

Car retailers, like CarMax, buy your car from you at a wholesale price. They do this so that they are able to sell your car to a consumer at a profit. The retail price of your car is often thousands of dollars more than the wholesale price you receive. So that’s thousands of dollars sitting in the dealer’s pocket, rather than yours.

It may take a little more work on your part, but cutting out the middlemen and selling your vehicle directly to a private buyer yourself is the only way to make the most possible money selling your car.

You Might Get The Run-A-Round

Spend some time checking out online reviews for Carmax’s buying service and you’ll find a common theme: your vehicle values change once you come into a location and have your vehicle inspected.

If you get a generic quote for your vehicle online and then go to a location for a professional appraiser to inspect your vehicle and then evaluate the value properly at that point…your value is bound to change. That shouldn’t be surprising, but many online reviews suggest that the new price and offer was often lower than the original quote and it was a shock.

group of people on cell phones

 This would be especially upsetting if sellers drove a very long distance to get to a location and then had this happen.

You Don't Get Any More Money

CarMax does not have a consignment program, so once you accept a check for your vehicle and sign it over…it’s gone and the deal is done.

Even if a new buyer is found quickly and the dealership makes thousands of dollars on your vehicle, they don’t share that windfall with you. That’s just not their business.

Looking for a Better Way to Sell Your Car?

looking for a way to sell car online

So, should you sell your car to CarMax? If you want to get the most money for your used car, then the answer is most likely going to be to pass. There are definitely better ways to not only figure out how much your car is worth, but to sell your car online as well! This is especially true if you want to sell your car in Pennsylvania!

It comes down to the dollars and cents of the transaction: If you want to take less money for your vehicle than it’s worth, then selling it to a car dealership who will turn around and resell it for more will help you accomplish your goal. 

If you want to sell your car for what it’s actually worth and pocket that cash, then selling it yourself is a way to put thousands of extra dollars in your pocket.

Motobyo Offers the Best of Both Worlds!

You can use our Instant Cash Offer tool to get an offer valid for 10 days if you want the convenience. You can also Sell Your Car Online on the Motobyo website, advertising it to verified private buyers at the price that you want. Depending on the popularity of your car, it’s not uncommon to receive bids and offers over your target sale price.

motobyo logo

If you arrange a private sale through Motobyo, we’ll be there to offer support with payment protection and vehicle transport services.

Get Your Cash Offer Today!