Can you make money from your car number plate?

Private car registration plates are somewhat of a misnomer. With many wealthy investors buying up exotic number plates at the annual DVLA auctions with the hope that they are on to a sure fire thing. So is it worth it? Can you buy a private plate on the cheap and retire in the sun? Or is it all far to speculative? Can it affect your car insurance as well with a valuable plate on the car

The popularity of private plates means that even if you have something you do not consider to be particularly exotic, you can offer it up on the second hand market. Someone may well have a connection to your registration and be prepared to pay the money for it.

You can search also with a number of specialist companies and brokers – including and – which will let you know how an estimation of what they think your plate will sell for. According to a study by Carfused, the average cost of a privately sold plate is £387, so you can make some reasonable money. The study found that one in 20 people had spent more than £1,000 on a plate, so if you have something popular you and it only needs two people who both want that plate, then you could be quids in.

There’s also the possibility of buying an expensive private plate, that in the hope someday it increases in value much like stocks and shares do over the longer term. Common examples of expensive plates are short number plates – with two, three or four letters or numbers. The issue is that in order to have one of these plates you will have had to have bought it before 1963 – when the registration date was added – so many of them have been bought and sold to the highest bidder.

However many experts highlight that this current trend cannot be guaranteed and depends entirely on the demand for the plate at any given time. Take the 1D registration, for instance, it may once have been a very sought after option, but there’s a chance there will be fewer 1D fans further down the track waiting to snap up the plate.