You may have heard that used cars are commanding bigger prices. Well, that works in your favor if you have an extra car to sell. Before you advertise it or offer it to a dealer, you need to do a little research on its trade in value.
Rankings and Ratings
The first thing you may want to find out is its rankings and ratings. It should have safety scores with the NHTSA, IIHS, and Eurocap. Rankings can be found at JD Power, U.S. News and World Report, and other automotive journalism sites.
If your car has good ratings, you want to be able to talk about that at a dealership. It can be hard to get the amount you want, but being knowledgeable about your car’s durability and popularity is sure to help you.
Kelley Blue Book, NADA, and Car and Driver trade in value are available online. Keep in mind that some price information refers to what a dealer can charge for your vehicle. Other numbers refer to what you could expect to get from a private party. A price range may also refer to what dealerships are willing to pay you for a used car. Never take one site as the final word. You need to be prepared to argue your case when talking to a dealer who is assessing your trade.
Once you have an idea of what KBB or NADA says your car is worth, try searching for it online as if you were going to buy it. Do these cars appear to be in the price range that the experts said they would be?
If you can take screenshots of these offers, you could compile them in a document on your phone. This may be useful when bargaining with a dealer. Make sure you get any notes on the car’s condition. Sometimes you can click on the CarFax. How does this used car compare with the one you are selling?
Operational and Structural Condition
Is your car in good shape? If you have been keeping up with maintenance and service items, your car is probably doing as well as it can be for its age and mileage. You should gather all of your car repair records and see if you can make a case that this car has been well cared for. That’s always a plus.
Perhaps you have an old CarFax history report, if you bought it used. A positive report may help you when pushing for a higher appraisal.
Exterior and Interior Cleanliness
Last but not least, the way the car looks can work for you or against you. It will be worth it to get the car washed and washed. If anything is missing, maybe you can buy the trim piece yourself and put it back on. If you’ve been keeping your car in a garage, take a picture to show your prospective buyer. Garaged cars have longer street lives.
The interior can be harder to clean than the outside. You may need to study what products are available and which ones have a reputation for cleaning stains on your upholstery or carpet. A little research can lead you to the exact product that can restore your interior to its original state.
Financed Car Difference
Even if you follow all of the above advice, a financed car trade may not benefit you. You need to understand how to trade in a car with a loan. It starts with understanding your loan amount and comparing that to what your used car is worth. Will you have money leftover after the sale to use as a down payment? If not, can you afford to roll the old loan into a new car purchase loan?
Before you sell your car to anyone, make sure you have addressed all of the areas covered in this article. If you do, you should get the best possible price and be able to feel good about making the trade.
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