5 Tips To Sell Your Bike For More Money
When selling a used bicycle you usually want to maximize the amount of money someone will offer you. While our BicycleBlueBook.com values represent a fair starting point for negotiations depending on the condition of your bicycle they certainly don’t represent hard values and like in any market the value of your bicycle at the end of the day is what a buyer is willing to pay for it. So after observing data from millions of bicycle transactions and studying the listings that accompanied them here are a few tips that will increase your chances to maximize the value received when selling your used bike.
The first one is simple and although seems obvious you would be surprised how often it is overlooked. Clean your bike before listing it for sale. A good detailed bike wash can take you an hour but trust us it’s worth it. Take the time to break out the soap, water, brush, degreaser, lube, and even a light wax if you have it. If you don’t have a great idea of how to clean your bike ask a buddy or look for a good YouTube video. In the future we might give you a run down on cleaning your bike for sale but for now we’ll just say that the cleaner the bike the more money you will likely receive for it during the sale and the happier the buyer.
Second is to have your bicycle serviced one last time. Depending on the price point of your bike it might not make a ton of sense to pay a local shop upwards of $75 to tune up your ride or give it a once over but if you’re selling a higher end bike it’s a really good idea. If you can add to your description that the bike was recently looked over and serviced at a local shop it will only help to set your bike apart from others out on the market and add a sense of professionalism to your listing.
If your bicycle was maintained or serviced at your local shop regularly while you owned it and you have proof of this add it to your listing! Like vehicles, buyers want to see as much documentation on their purchase as possible. With the ever-increasing new bicycle prices that trickle down to expensive used bicycles its more important than ever for buyers to know that the used bike they are getting ready to fork out thousands of dollars for was properly cared for. If you possess the skills and understanding to work on your own bikes let the buyers know. While we aren’t dealing with transmissions and combustion engines there are still plenty of regular maintenance areas that should be normally serviced depending on your riding conditions and riding frequency to extend maximum life on parts, accessories, and frameset.
Smile it’s picture time! If you are planning on listing your bicycle online for a potential distance sale then good pictures are a MUST! Take the time to photo document as many areas of the bicycle as possible. If there is any damage now would be a really good time to document it for the buyer. Show detailed pictures of any scuffs, scrapes, or more, so that the buyer is not surprised or disappointed when the bike arrives. We suggest good lighting with a solid backdrop for all of your pictures so that it will be easy for buyers to see all of the detail. Take pictures of all the major areas including, the fork, both sides of the frame, drivetrain, pictures, pictures from the front, pictures from the back, handlebars, derailleurs, pedals and cranks. Our best advice for this step is to pretend like you are a buyer from across the country preparing to spend thousands of your hard earned dollars on a used bicycle. You would want to have the best visual picture of the purchase as possible, if you can make the buyer feel like he/she has actually seen the bike in person you are doing a great job as the seller.
Finally a detailed description will always help seal the deal. Here is where you have the chance to explain anything in the pictures or disclose anything that wasn’t visible in the pictures. Again the more you can write about your specific bike the better. As an added bonus you can include stats and specs from the manufactures site with a link directing buyers there for further images and information. If there are favorable reviews that third parties have written up about the bicycle you are selling include links to them or reference them in your description.
In the description make sure you call out any upgrades you may have made. As cycling enthusiasts many times we modify our stock bikes to make them better suited for our riding style and often times this adds value so don’t forget to mention them!
At the end of the day a well cared for, well-used bicycle will garner a much better value than one that has been neglected. If it was properly serviced and cared for the chance of a quick high value sale is great. If you are selling a bicycle that is well worn and loved don’t be afraid of being honest in the listing and pictures, often it will result in a quicker transaction with maximum value because the seller won’t feel like they are being misled.
Good luck with your selling!