What’s my number plate worth?

Finding the perfect private number plate can be tricky, depending on what your definition of perfect is. That being said, there are a few pointers you can benefit from to allow you to find the right plate for you.

In this blog, we will provide some top tips for finding the perfect private number plate.

Bespoke Plates is a renowned and legally certified registration platemaker and installer, with options of 3D Plates, 4D Plates, Show Plates, regular / Electric Vehicle Plates and more. We are the one-stop shop for all things registration plates!

Whether it’s a Private Plate, Gel Plate, Standard Registration Plate or plating accessories, we have you covered.

As a certified and experienced team of plate fitters and makers, our plates are installed to the specification of UK law, provided alongside the appropriate paperwork you require. (The only exception to this is show plates.)

Private Plates explained

How to Fit 4D Number Plates

A private plate is a number plate that has a unique set of characters, this can be in the sense that it has fewer characters, or spells out something, and more. Private plates are completely optional, and serve no purpose other than adding a level of personalisation to the vehicle in question.

Private plates can be purchased by almost anyone. They are available to almost any vehicle, as long as they abide by the following rules set out by the UK driving authority.

  • The vehicle must be legally registered with DVLA in the UK and have a valid MOT certificate.
  • Only operational cars can be assigned private plates, so they must be able to move under their own power.
  • The DVLA reserves the right that you be available for them to carry out inspections on cars which have a private plate. This can be at any time, so it must always be available for inspection. Failing this inspection can lead to a host of consequences, which can include removal of the private plate.
  • The vehicle has been taxed or had a SORN in place continuously for the past 5 years.

Can anyone own a private plate?

Essentially, yes! Whether you are buying a private plate to place on your own vehicle, or to sell, you can buy one, as long as you can afford it! Though, you can’t just horde the plates you own. You have a 10-year time-limit to sell or use the plate, if you don’t do anything with it, or renew your ownership, the plate will be relinquished and put back into the market.

Is the private plate selling market lucrative?

Absolutely. If you are savvy, well funded, and have a large network, buying and selling private plates can be a lucrative endeavour. That being said, there is a difficult balance to achieve.

Buying every private plate you see may not be helpful, as there may not be anyone after them. Whereas, buying a sought after private plate may become difficult to sell if it was bought at an extremely high price. Though, it would be easier to sell than an unwanted plate.

Top tips for finding the perfect private number plate

Top tips for finding the perfect private number plate

Look around

The first tip is quite an obvious one. You should make sure your search for the private plate you are after covers all legally compliant sellers, whether this be at a DVLA auction, or online through private plate sellers.

To spot any dodgy dealers, keep these points in mind if you make an enquiry with them.

  • They aren’t able to provide concise information relevant to the legalities of a private plate.
  • They change the pricing of the plate after you have enquired for it.
  • There is no information about the seller that makes them seem real, let alone credible.

Save up

Some plates that are not at an auction will likely be at a set price, the more unique the plate, the higher the price would be. On the other hand, it is extremely rare for a sought-after plate to be sold at its asking price at an auction. It will likely run up higher than you would expect.

The problem with this is that the owner of the plate ultimately is the person who pays the most, so save up!

Have back up options

Maybe your private plate is too far outside your budget, so what can you do? One option is to compromise on a character, for example, instead of an ‘S’ use a ‘5’ etc. These marginal differences may make your ideal private plate accessible to you.

Enquire with private sellers

Depending on the plate you are after, it may be in the hands of a private seller. Although the price they sell the plate to you may be set, building a healthy rapport and seeing if any negotiations can take place may be beneficial to you.

However, in some instances, there is a chance you can get scammed by private sellers who are fraudulent. To avoid this, keep these points in mind…

  • The number plates materials are made within the specifications of the law regarding number plates.
  • The owner provides a V317 application to transfer the rights to you and your vehicle.
  • All necessary documentation has been filled correctly and processed.

There are more pitfalls regarding the purchase of private plates. Funds must be held until certain documents have been processed correctly. This can be frustrating due to the fact that a private sale is unregulated. This leaves room for someone to be scammed.

The best way to safely navigate a private sale, in which you are buying a plate, is to have your solicitor oversee the whole process.

Can I customise a private plate?

Can I customise a private plate?

Yes. Whether it is a private plate or standard plate, getting your own bespoke custom number plate is relatively simple. In most cases, you can even do it from the comfort of your own home! If you opt to use Bespoke Plates, you can order a custom number plate directly from our website.

Let us walk you through the process of choosing your plate through us.

  1. Head to the Bespoke Plates website
  2. Select the plate style you want under the “Build Your Plate” tab. Alternatively, you can follow this link.
  3. Enter your registration (You can press ‘preview’ to see your registration with all the modification options you have selected.)
  4. When selecting your chosen plate, you can opt for 3D/4D options, a Hex plate, and whether you want a legal plate or a show plate.
  5. Select preferred optional accessories.
  6. Decide if you are collecting with installation, or if you want it to be delivered.
  7. Confirm your order!

If your plate is not a show plate,  we would require relevant documentation to ascertain that you have the authority or the permission to upgrade and replace your old number plate. This is regardless of if it is a private plate, or a regular number plate.

Installing through Bespoke Plates ensures the best service & secure installation for your number plate, along with guidance for any questions you may have.

Purchase private plates today

In this blog, we have highlighted our plate options and the information you need to obtain our stylish customisation options for your vehicle. We aim to have confidently provided the top tips for finding the perfect private number plate.

We hope that we have provided all the right answers and options for all of your plate modification needs.

Bespoke Plates has all the options you can ask for, as an approved registration vendor we can guarantee your modification abides by the DVLA rules whilst offering same-day collections and full fitting service.

To get in touch and discuss the full fitting service we offer with our plates, you can talk to one of the members of our team by:

Email info@bespoke-plates.co.uk

Phone 0333 006 7878

Visit in-store

36A Broughton Street,


M8 8NN

discount popup bespoke-plates

Great! Use coupon code below at checkout for 5% discount