Carvana and Vroom Both Buy and Sell Cars — How Do They Compare?

Read this side-by-side comparison of Vroom and Carvana before buying, selling, or trading in your vehicle. See which company meets your needs.

Jennifer Farrington - Author

Aug. 17 2022, Published 10:53 p.m. ET

Vroom and Carvana logos and delivery trucks
Source: Twitter/ @Vroom; @Carvana

Although Carvana and Vroom may have simplified the process of buying and selling a car, as competitors, you’re left with having to decide which is the better company to deal with. If you like the idea of having your vehicle picked up or delivered to your home, read on for a side-by-side comparison of Vroom and Carvana.

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Here's what we know about each company's car buying and selling process from start to finish.

There are differences between buying a car from Carvana vs. selling a car to Carvana.

Source: Getty Images

If you’re on the market for a used vehicle but want to avoid the hassle that often comes with visiting a dealership, Carvana might be an option to consider. Unlike some lenders, Carvana doesn't have a minimum credit score requirement, which means even people with bad credit can still get approved for financing.

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The catch, however, is that those with an imperfect credit score will need to put down more money, and will be subjected to higher monthly payments. Carvana’s pre-qualification process (which doesn’t impact your credit) only takes a few minutes to complete and will reveal how large of an auto loan you qualify for and what your estimated monthly payments would be.

In the event you find a vehicle you like and can afford, you can start the process of getting it shipped to you. If the vehicle is located out of Carvana’s free delivery area, you can either pick it up at a location you and the lender agree on for a shipping fee that ranges between $190 and $590 (refundable if you return the vehicle) or have it delivered to your home for $599 (nonrefundable if you return the car).

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Some additional perks you get when you buy a vehicle through Carvana include:

  • Every vehicle comes equipped with “a limited 100 day/4,189 mile “Worry Free Guarantee.”
  • Carvana allows you to test drive the vehicle for seven days, and up to 400 miles (Carvana charges $1 every mile over the 400). If you don’t like it, you can send it back and receive a refund.
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You can also sell your vehicle to Carvana or trade it in.

Whether you want to sell your vehicle or trade it in, you can do so through Carvana’s website. You need to have specific information related to your vehicle including the VIN and mileage in order to receive an offer within minutes (given Carvana wants to buy it).

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Should Carvana decide to provide you with an offer for your vehicle, you’ll have seven days to decide whether you want to accept it (and receive payment via check or direct deposit) or if you want to apply the money toward the purchase of a vehicle.

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In the event you decide to sell, Carvana will arrange to pick your vehicle up (for free) or you can drop it off at a vending machine or hub site. At that time, you’ll receive a check for your vehicle.

Now that you have all the specifics on Carvana’s buying and selling process, let’s look at Vroom’s.

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Vroom, like Carvana, lets you test drive a vehicle for seven days.

Because Vroom operates similarly to Carvana, below you’ll find the major differences between the two.

Buying a vehicle through Vroom

  • Vroom offers financing options and is partnered with more than a dozen banks, some of which include Ally and Westlake Financial. Unlike Carvana, which doesn’t have a minimum credit score requirement, Vroom says its “lending partners accommodate most credit profiles.”
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  • You can get pre-qualified for a vehicle through Vroom in minutes. This will give you a general idea of how large of an auto loan you qualify for, what your down payment will be, and what your monthly payments will be.
  • Vroom charges a delivery fee, which is determined using your location and that of the vehicle. Some customers are given the option to include the cost of delivery in their financing, according to the company’s website.
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  • Vroom, like Carvana, will give you seven days (or 250 miles) to test drive a vehicle. If you decide to return the vehicle, you likely won’t get your vehicle transfer fee back and might even incur a $599 restocking fee.
  • All Vroom vehicles come with a limited warranty which is good for 90 days or 6,000 miles.
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Selling a vehicle to Vroom

With just a little information, Vroom will provide you with an offer (in minutes) for your vehicle (if the company wishes to buy it). The price will remain the same for seven days or if you put an additional 250 miles on it. Should you decide to accept Vroom’s offer, the company will schedule to pick up the vehicle free of charge.

There are some common complaints with Vroom and Carvana.

Despite how convenient it may seem to buy a vehicle through Carvana and Vroom, there have been several complaints about both, some of which include:

  • The vehicle that arrives looks different than what was featured in the picture.
  • Getting a return from both companies can be a long, drawn-out process.
  • The delivery time is sometimes much longer than what was expected.
  • Some features of the vehicle don’t function, though the description of the vehicle fails to include this.

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