How do I sell my number plate?

Can I sell it?

First of all, before looking at how to sell your number plate, we need to establish whether or not, under the current regulations, you are able to sell the number plate.

To be able to sell your number plate, it needs to be either;

• On a Vehicle which must be registered in your name, or
• On either a Certificate of Entitlement (V750), or Certificate of Retention (V778), and you must be named as the Purchaser, or Grantee.

You should then check your paperwork, to make sure that the words 'non transferrable' do not appear anywhere, on any of your documents. If they do, then unfortunately you will be unable sell your number plate as you cannot conduct a transfer.

How much is it worth?

Okay, so now you have established that you can sell your number plate, you are now faced with the tricky part; setting the asking price.

As you have probably realised by now, putting a monetary value on a number plate can be very tricky, and it is crucial as it can mean the difference between your plate selling, and remaining unsold for a while.

If you would like some hints & tips on valuing your registration, then please refer to our valuations guide.

Alternatively, we do offer independent number plate valuations, where we will manually research the number plate market for you to give you our opinion on how much the plate is worth and send you a valuation certificate. These cost £9.99, or free when you place any Premium Advert with us.

Where should I advertise it?

There are generally two options, either to go via a dealer (if you do opt to go down this route, we recommend using a dealer registered with the Cherished Numbers Dealers Association, or CNDA for short), or to try and sell your plate privately.

Advertising your number plate through a dealer usually won't cost you anything upfront, however, beware that this option can prove costly in the long run, as they tend to take a large percentage, (30% on average) of your number plates selling price, as their commission.

That means that if your plate were to sell for £1,000, they would only return you around £700. You may also lose control of your registrations selling price, as dealers act on your behalf and their commission needs to be incorporated in the price.

Selling your number plates privately gives you full control over things, you set the asking price, you communicate directly with buyers, and you keep 100% of the selling price. The question is, where can you sell privately?

Well, some people choose eBay, however their fees can end up being almost as much as going through a dealer, as they charge listing fees to list your plate on their site, relisting fees if it doesn't sell within the auction time, and then a 'Final Value Fee' of around 10% of the selling price when it does sell.

In our experience, though, not many people search for number plates on eBay, and even when they do, eBay's search facility is fairly limited making it difficult for buyers to find your plate.

That's why we created Plate Trader - to try and become the Auto Trader of the number plate world.

We offer an alternative to number plate dealers or auction websites that demand a percentage of the money from the sale of your registration plate. We provide low-cost number plate advertisements, where you pay a small fee to list your plate, and you then deal direct with buyers, meaning you keep 100% of your number plates selling price. To find out more information, visit our sell your number plate page.

Completing the sale

Once you have listed your plate and found a buyer, you now need to complete the sale.

Selling a number plate is no more difficult than selling a car, but many people are unsure of the process and what forms need to be completed etc. For this reason, we've outlined the process in a few easy steps below.

The first step is to arrange the payment for the registration. For the buyers peace of mind you may want to send them a photograph of your V5, Retention Document or Certificate of Entitlement to prove that you own the plate, but make sure you conceal the certificate number/reference number as it's possible for someone to instantly transfer your private plate to their car using these numbers. For the actual payment, we recommend using a secure service such as Paypal which provides peace of mind and protection to both parties.

With the payment completed, you now need to transfer the registration. If it's currently on a vehicle then you should take it off and put it on to a retention certificate. You can do this using the DVLA's new online service here or if you're old fashioned you can complete a V317 application form (available here). It costs £80 to do but this includes the Assignment Fee, meaning that the buyer doesn't have to pay any more fees to put the plate on to their vehicle.

Once the number plate is off the vehicle and 'on retention' you can transfer it to the buyer. The easiest way to do this is to give the buyer the Certificate Number and direct them to the DVLA website here. This will allow them to assign the registration to their vehicle instantly online and in doing so, will transfer rights/ownership of the registration to them. Alternatively, if they'd prefer the postal method, then you just need to sign & date in Sections 1 & 6 or your Retention Document and post it to the buyer using a trackable postal service. This also allows them to assign the registration to their vehicle and transfers rights/ownership of the registration to them.

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