✅ Best place to sell a private number plate
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Here, I share practical insights on making (and saving!) money. With a knack for budgeting and a passion for financial freedom, I've picked up lots of tips & tricks along the way. And I can't wait to share them with you here!
If you’ve got a private number plate and you’re looking to make some money by selling it, you’ll want to know where the best place to sell a private number plate is.
Whether moving to a new country, outgrowing the digits or simply wanting to make some money, there’s often a reason to ask about the best place to sell a private number plate in the UK.
Of course, you’ve paid into the plate and maybe every year since ownership, so you’ll want to be able to make a little return on investment.
Luckily, there are ways and places for selling a private number plate that don’t involve putting it on retention and forgetting it in the back of the garage or handing it over to a family friend never to be seen again.
✅ Can I get a return on investment if I sell a private number plate instantly?
The first question that often gets asked is whether or not selling a plate will provide a return on investment.
And this really depends on the circumstance of the plate. For example, the cost of the plate at first purchase, if you bought the plate yourself or if it was a gift as well as how many rolling years you’ve used or paid for the plate.
Let’s think about the costs of a number plate, they can range anywhere from £153 all the way up to the hundreds of thousands (the most expensive plate to date was a cherished plate reading “25 0” and cost over £518,000 back in 2014).
Then, there’s the cost of owning a plate when not registered to a vehicle (in retention) of £25 per year and the transfer fee of £80 paid to the DVLA.
Yet, if you were gifted your private plates and you’ve always had them registered to your car, you’ll find it nice and easy to see a return on investment for the one transfer fee (so long as your private plates have only been on the one car).
✅ What is a Cherished Number Plate?
A cherished number plate is a category of both private number plates and plates issued before 1963 that don’t state the date or age of the vehicle.
Of course, the way the date has been recognised on vehicle number plates has changed over the years; after being identified through the alphabet for many years, 2001 saw the change to being identified by qualifying digits in the 3rd and 4th positions on the plate.
With this, they are also often referred to as dateless number plates.
More often than not, due to the personalisation of private plates, they’re all considered to be cherished plates.
✅ Can I Sell My Number Plate Back to the DVLA?
No, you are not able to sell a private number plate back to the DVLA.
Once the numberplate has entered circulation, the numberplate can either be registered to your vehicle, kept on retention or sold-on through a third-party dealer (or direct to another individual).
However, when a private numberplate is sold, the DVLA must be notified immediately.
This is because, despite popular opinion, a private numberplate is not registered to the person. Private number plates are registered to the vehicle and must see a vehicle transfer (with a fee of £80) every time the car it is being used on, or the owner of the cherished number plate, changes.
In order to do this, the DVLA will need to be sent the current logbook of the car (V5C) as well as the V778 or V750. When this is done, the DVLA will post out a new logbook for the car that is wearing the plates.
✅ How Can I Value My Number Plate?
There are many sites such as National Numbers who – before providing selling and auctioning deals – will offer to value your private plates.
When selling a private number plate, you’ll need to think about the value of your plate in the current market in order to see whether it’s best to wait for the value to change or go ahead with a fast sale. It’s also up to you as to whether you want to stray from this valuation in the sale. Many who choose to go for a fast sale will decrease the premium in order to attract a buyer.
Yet, understanding the value of a plate is a whole system of jargon on its own. Here’s what estimators such as National Numbers will look at when valuing to sell a private number plate instantly:
- Similar plates currently in circulation
- Upcoming number plate releases from the DVLA
- The type of private plate and if it includes a prefix, suffix, dateless or new style
- If it includes in-demand digits like “1”
- The look of the plate being front or back heavy
- If letters are likely to match initials
- Current trends in words like “B055”
- If it relates to any vintage, classic, notable or traditional cars or years
✅ How do I sell my private number plate?
There are a few different options for selling a private number plate. While some are more secure than others and some may provide a faster buy/sell rate, they each have their own benefits. Take a look:
List for Private Sale
Through places such as the newspaper, on social media and in private group chats, you can notify just about anyone that you’re selling your private registration plates and how much you’re selling them for.
While it might take a while to gain some traction, the likelihood of being able to reach a wider audience using multiple channels of communication will likely find you a buyer who is attracted to the price on offer rather than hackling you down. You could even try and upload a YouTube video to share and prove the legitimacy of the sale.
Platforms to try include: YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Medium, news sites and more.
Sales and Bidding Websites
Another option would be to try your luck on e-commerce sites such as eBay and Gumtree. Both provide speciality listing services for the buying and selling of number plates. When it comes to eBay, their dedicated website category is that of cherished number plates as these can often be the easiest to sell.
However, if you do choose to sell through eBay, it’s worth keeping the starting price for the bid very close to your desired price as a slow month can cause few low bids to close a sale.
As well as this, there is the eBay selling fee of 10% the value of the sale; a top tip from The Debt Free Family is to sign up and wait until you receive an email from eBay for maximum £1 selling fees before posting a listing. With this, no matter how much you’re selling a private number plate for, you’ll only see a £1 fee.
- Through a DVLA Authorised Dealer
This will be the most secure method for selling your private number plates as they value the plates free of charge, deal with the buyer, promote the sale of your registration and aid in both the monetary transaction of the private plates as well as the vehicle registration transaction. However, you will see a small fee for the cost of the services upon sale.
Here’s a definitive list of DVLA authorised dealers:
- Absolute Reg
- British Car Registrations
- Car Numbers
- Car Reg
- Caz Reg
- Chestnut Reg
- Click 4 Reg
- Drive in Plates
- Elite Registrations
- Grand Plates
- Reg Plates
- Reg Traders
- Reg Transfers
- Registration Marks
- Select Number Plates
- Simply Registrations
- K4ates Pl4tes
- Mark Hunt
- Motor Marks
- National Numbers
- Net Plates
- New Reg
- Plate Dealer
- Plate Finder
- Plate Hunter
- Plate Private
- Platinum Plates
- Premier Plates UK
- Primo Registrations
- Reg Maker
- The Personalised Numbers Agency
- The Private Plate Company
- Western Registrations
✅ What is the fastest way to sell a private number plate?
The fastest way for selling a private number plate will be to head through the route of a DVLA authorized dealer.
These dealers may offer prioritised promotion which will be charged at an extra fee. They also suggest, to secure a faster sale, to reduce the price of the number plate in order to increase the desirability.
Sometimes, the authorised dealer will buy private plates at a reduced rate for their stock before selling for a profit at a later date. However, if this is something you’re wanting to do, then we suggest getting in contact with as many of the above authorised dealers as possible to get the best offer for your plates.
Another option would be to consider listing your plates on classified adverts (such as in online and print newspapers) and on seller boards (such as eBay and Gumtree).
One benefit of using this method to sell a private number plate instantly is being able to deal with a buyer directly without needing to think about losing a commission fee to the authorised dealer.
Otherwise, if you believe you already have a buyer wanting to buy the private plates, you have the option of selling it immediately and paying the DVLA or DFT (Department for Transport) the £80 transfer fee of registration.
If you’ve decided to sell a private number plate instantly to generate some quick cash but don’t actually want to sell your private plates, you don’t have to. There are other passive income streams you can try out.
Have a look at some of the posts below and see if there’s a second income stream you could try!