How to Maximize the Trade-in Value of Your Car

Written by: Cash101 Staff

How to Maximize the Trade-in Value of Your Car

When it comes time for you to get a new car, you do not have to take the minimum amount of value for your trade-in. By taking a few easy steps, you can ensure that you will be able to maximize the trade-in value, which means that you will not have to get such a large loan to buy your new car.

Protect the Car’s Finish for Better Trade-in Value

One of the first things that a dealer is going to look at on your tradein is the paint and the exterior condition. Just by taking a glance at it may mean that an opinion is quickly made that they are not going to give you much for it. It is important to keep up the condition of the exterior by keeping it clean and waxed, and possibly in a protected space, too, as much as possible, says Investopedia.com. A dealer will also look at the exterior to find places that have been repaired. If the paint is bad, having it painted will give you a better resale value.

Find Out the Car Values Before Going to the Dealer

Before you just come up with a figure that you think the car is worth, you should go to a professional guide to give you more realistic numbers. The Kelly Blue Book is a good place to start, but you also should look at what used cars are going for at a place like AutoTrader.com, says Edmunds. Even then, do not make the mistake thinking that a dealer will give you the amount you still owe on it – especially if it is a newer car. Different dealers will also give you different amounts, especially if they already have some of the same models on their lot.

It is important to remember that a dealer is looking at buying your used car like a businessman. He or she knows if they will be able to make a profit on it or not. They also have to allow a little leeway on your trade in car value to cover any expenses that they do not know about yet, when they get it ready to resell, says Auto-Broker-Magic.com.

Keep the Car Well Maintained for Best Results

When a dealer checks out a car that you want to trade in, they are first going to check CarFax to learn about its history. Then they will take it for a spin around the block and then look under the hood. If they find it has dirty engine oil, or the engine is covered in oil, and transmission fluid is leaking, you can be sure that you are not going to get very much for it, says Insider Car Buying Tips.com. You may want to get your trade-in detailed prior to going to a dealer’s, and make sure to remove the smoke smell if you smoke.

Go to More Than One Car Lot and Compare

Different dealers are going to estimate your trade-in value differently since there is no actual

value on a used car. It really is subjective to a lot of factors, but the bottom line is what the dealer will actually give you. Even if a dealer gives you what you want, they may be adding extra prices somewhere on the price of the new car. By going to more than one dealer, says Bankrate, you can discover what they are willing to offer for trade value, and then start your dealing from there. An online car trade in value estimator may also help you know what it may be worth.


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How to Maximize the Trade-in Value of Your Car

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