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  • USED CAR VALUE/TRADE-INS

    Part of the stress of selling or trading in your used car is trying to get a good price for it. How do you know what its worth? How do you up its value? How do you make sure you're getting what its worth? These are just a few of the questions we hope to answer.

    USED CAR VALUE:
    Finding the value of your used car is not a guessing game and it will take some work. There are many ways to determine an approximate value of your used car so you'll know what you have to work with. No one will ever be able to give you an exact value for your car. This is why it is important to get a quote on its value from several different places. Once you have a few figures, you can use them to determine what you should sell your car for. Don't over or under estimate the value of your car. Either way you will lose money. If you under estimate the value, it will sell quick because someone will know you didn't do your homework and they will be eager to buy. If you over estimate the value, the car won't sell and you might get desperate to sell and drop the price way below its value just to get rid of it in a hurry.

    Publications such as Kelly Blue Book and NADA Used Car Guide are specifically written, printed, and updated regularly to help you determine the value of your used car. There are also many online services in which you can fill out a simple form with some information about your used car and they will give you an approximate value. These sites are a quick way to get several quotes on you car's estimated value. These are free, quick and easy.

    Once you have gotten several quotes as to your car's estimated value, you can make an educated decision on how much you can get out of your car. The best way to do this is to add up all of your quotes and divide the total by the number of quotes you received. This will give you a median number to work with. Use this figure as a guide to help you price your car. Most of these quotes are given without specifics so account for those in your asking price. If you know there is something on the car that needs to be fixed and you don't want to fix it before you sell the car, deduct that estimated amount from your asking price. If you have done any custom work and are leaving it in the car, add to the asking price accordingly. The best way to do this is to find out what the asking price of that item is and deduct a third if it's in good condition.

    Example:
    If you put custom rims on the car that cost $1,500.00 brand new and they're in good condition, add $1,000.00 to your asking price. (When selling your car be sure to point out these items. The buyer may not want them and you might make more money taking them off and selling them by themselves.)

    If you decide you want to sell your car privately, make sure to read our How to Sell a Used Car section. This section has many helpful tips on how to sell your car quickly and get what you're asking for it.

    Also, clean up your car before you sell it. Appearance is extremely important when selling a used car. Make sure you wash it thoroughly and give the inside a quick detail. It's also a good idea to make any small repairs that may be needed like changing a tail light. You may think little things like that don't count and won't be noticed but believe me, they will.

    TRADE-IN:
    Most often you can get more money for your used car by selling it yourself but if you want to trade it in, here are some helpful ideas.

    Know what your car is approximately worth before you go into the dealership. Dealerships very rarely give you car a trade-in value close to what its worth but at least you'll know what it's worth so you can negotiate. Remember going into the dealership that on 90% of the trade-ins they get, they will only offer about half of what the value is. It is very difficult to get them to offer anymore than that and if they do, they will try to charge it back to you somewhere in the contract for your new car.

    Make sure you know what you want from your trade-in before you begin negotiations. Once you have settled on a trade-in price, make sure that trade-in price isn't charged back to you somewhere in the contract.