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How to Sell?

CarMax Review 2024 – Is it Legit to Sell a Car?

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Written by: Michael Becker
Last Updated:

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CarMax Review

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CarMax is a used car dealership based in the US that allows you to sell a car online. You can get an online offer for your used car in under 2 minutes using the free online tool on the company’s website. In addition, your offer will be valid for up to 7 days, so you have ample time to look around for other better offers. Plus, you can also enjoy same day payments when you sell your car to CarMax.

Legit & Safe

Offers Value

Turnaround Time

Payment Process


  • Instant online offer – get an offer for your used car in under 2 minutes by filling in some details about your car on the company’s online form.
  • Online offer is valid for up to 7 days – you can use this time to look around at other used car dealerships to see if you can get a better offer.
  • 2 options to sell your car – you can either get an online offer for you car or you can bring it to a CarMax dealership for an in-store appraisal.
  • Instant payment – once CarMax appraises your car and confirms that everything is in order, you will get paid via bank draft within 30 minutes.


  • High processing fees – depending on the outlet you sell you car at and your state, you may have to pay a processing fee of between $100 to $400.
  • No free pick up or towing service – you will need to bring your car to any one of the company’s 220 stores in 41 states in order to sell your car.

CarMax Reviews – Is Carmax Legit?

Yes, CarMax is a legitimate company that does what it says – it purchases your vehicle directly from you.

While CarMax has an A+ score, it’s not accredited by the Better Business Bureau and has an overall score of 1.2 out of 5-star rating. It also has a rating of 1.8 on Trustpilot. Some of these complaints were from sellers who complained about the slow service. Others also claimed the company does not take its offers seriously.

Otherwise, most positive reviewers were happy with the support. They said when they contacted them they got a nearly immediate reply. The replies would be complete with answers to their questions and resolutions to the challenges.

Review siteBetter Business BureauTrustpilot
Rating1.2/5-star rating2/5-star rating

Does Carmax Give Good Offers?

The money you can get for your car with Carmax depends on its make, mileage, and condition.

Carmax will review the current market conditions and your car’s make, model, mileage, and history report. 

The company will also examine your car’s condition for defects like frame or flood damage. They will also test drive your vehicle and check whether the brakes and turn signals work.

Is it Worth Selling a Car with Carmax?

Selling your car to CarMax is worthwhile if you value convenience, speed, and a hassle-free process. CarMax offers quick appraisals, firm offers valid for seven days, and reliable payment on the spot.

However, while their prices are competitive, you might get a higher price through a private sale, which requires more effort and time. Consider your priorities to make the best decision.

Best Carmax Alternatives

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Buys used, damaged or junk cars

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Free, no-obligation cash offers

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Excellent customer service ratings

Honors guaranteed offer for 7 days

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Great for Low-Mileage Cars

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Gives a real offer in 2 minutes

100% hassle-free online process

Free car’s Value Tracker available

How Do You Sell a Car to CarMax? 

Selling your car to CarMax is as easy as it gets, all you need to do is follow the simple steps below.

Step 1: Log On to the CarMax Website

The first step in selling your car to CarMax is to log on to the CarMax website and click on the “sell” option on the home page.

Step 2: Fill Out a Form

Once you’re on the “sell” page, you’ll need to fill out a quick form to provide details about your car, such as:

  • The make and model of your vehicle
  • Year of production
  • Present condition
  • Location of the car

These details will help CarMax experts give you the best offer for your car.

Here’s how getting your car an estimate with CarMax works:

Step 3: Inspection

If CarMax is interested in your car, they will notify you to make an appointment and bring in your car for inspection.

This step is required so CarMax makes sure your vehicle meets the specifications you’ve provided.

Step 4: Receive a Quote

After the inspection, you will immediately receive a quote for your car. You can either accept the offer immediately or take a few days (up to 7 days) to make a decision.

Step 5: Submit Documents & Hand in the Car Keys

As soon as you accept an offer from CarMax, all you’ve left to do is to provide them with all the required documents and your car key.

Step 6: Get Paid

What’s best about CarMax is that they hand you your payment the same day you sell your car to the company. CarMax pays with a bank draft, a type of check that guarantees the payment to be available by the issuing bank.

Note that bank draft must be deposited and cannot be cashed out.

Carmax FAQ

What is CarMax?

CarMax is a car retail company that prides itself on providing a stress-free method for buying or selling a car.

With headquarters in Richmond, VA, and over 27,000 employees, CarMax has been around the block for almost 3 decades and has up to 200 physical locations across the U.S.

Today, CarMax has grown to be the go-to place for selling your car at a reasonable price, especially since you can do this online.

As a well-regarded company, Fortune recently ranked CarMax among the top 100 companies to work for in 2020.

How does CarMax work?

CarMax provides 2 different services:

  1. You can buy the car through CarMax
  2. You can sell your car through CarMax

Selling through Carmax begins by visiting the CarMax website and submitting a quick application for a free appraisal.

With their “no-haggle” policy, you get an immediate upfront payment for your car, or you could choose to wait seven days to consider your offer before concluding.

What’s best is that CarMax buys all kinds of cars, so you do not have to worry about the model of the car you want to sell.

Who is Carmax best for?

Carmax is best for individuals looking to sell cars online and earn extra income. It’s also meant for buyers looking for various vehicles.

carvana vs carmax vs truecar

What types of cars does CarMax purchase?

When it comes to what types of cars you can sell, CarMax isn’t picky. The company accepts all makes and models in all kinds of conditions. This means you can even sell a damaged car to CarMax.

So CarMax will even buy your car if it has:

  • Engine issues
  • “Check engine light” on
  • Is junk

However, you should note that CarMax thoroughly inspects your car and checks your car’s history, condition, and merit. Having said this, CarMax won’t buy a car with:

  • A salvage history
  • Frame damage
  • Flood damage

How fast can you sell your car with Carmax?

While the Carmax appraisal process can take up to 7 days, Carmax can give you an offer in under 2 minutes and write you a check on the spot. Carmax will pay you the same day you sell your car.

Carmax fees

CarMax provides a free valuation. However, some outlets charge a processing fee of between $100 and $400 to cover the costs of handling all the sales paperwork.

You’ll also need to pay state fees that are related to selling your car, such as:

  • Registration fee
  • Title transfer fee
  • Tax fee

Note that these fees vary from state to state.

Carmax payment options

The platform will send you your payment the same day you sell your car to the company. CarMax pays with a bank draft, a type of check that guarantees the payment will be available from the issuing bank.

should I sell my car to carmax

How good is Carmax support?

Carmax has pages and articles that provide detailed frequently asked questions. If you have trouble setting up your online account or have any issues, contact the Customer Service team at (800) 925-3612.

Documents to sell a car to CarMax

Let’s take a look at all the required paperwork you’ll need to provide CarMax with to sell your car:

  1. Car Title – you must provide your car’s title. If you don’t have a title, you should go to your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to get a duplicate car title. Note that all titleholders must be present and payoff details should be filled in.
  2. Car Registration – you’ll also need a valid and current vehicle registration stating proof of ownership.
  3. ID—You must present a valid and current state-issued photo ID. If the car has other titleholders, each person needs to present his/her ID.
  4. Car Keys & Remote – lastly, you must hand over all car keys and remotes.

Does CarMax give good appraisals?

CarMax offers a better deal for your car than other regular dealers. However, you may get a higher amount if you sell your car privately.

Can you negotiate with CarMax when selling a car?

Unfortunately, you can not. If you don’t like the quote CarMax provided, the best you can do is reject the offer.

Does CarMax have hidden fees?

No, they don’t. Apart from the Processing and State fees, which are not applicable in all CarMax locations, CarMax does not charge you any other fee for selling your car to them.

How does Carmax choose the vehicles that they buy?

Carmax digs deep into every car’s history to rule out any car with flood damage, frame damage, or salvage history.

Can I negotiate my offer?

No, all of Carmax offers are firm and are valid for 7 days.

To determine an offer, Carmax reviews the current market conditions as well as your car’s specific year, make, model, mileage, and vehicle history report. The company also examine your car’s condition inside and out for major defects like frame or flood damage.

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Michael Becker


About the author:

Michael Becker is a car enthusiast and expert who has been working in the automotive industry for over 15 years. He started his career as a salesperson at a local dealership, where he learned the ins and outs of the car market. Then he moved on to flipping cars for a profit.

Michael has also helped many of his relatives and friends to sell their cars, using his knowledge and skills to get them the best deals. He will guide you through the process and help you avoid the common pitfalls.

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