How Do I Know If a Dealer Trade-In Value Is Fair?
Many people forget the pain of getting rid of their old car as they are more wrapped up in experiencing the joy of the purchase of a new car. Most people have two options — sell their car to a private party or offer the car as a trade-in to the car dealer. Selling the car by yourself can take a long time and the process is not easy. Trade-ins are a more convenient option for many, but many people feel the dealer trade-in value offered is not fair. So what is the right trade-in value of your car? Here are some tips to find out a fair trade-in value for your car.
Fact-Check: Dealers Buy Your Car at Wholesale Price
While you expect a fair trade-in value for your old car, dealers offer a wholesale price for used cars. In most cases, the dealer offers the lowest price on the car in order to make a decent profit on the retail sale of the car. The trade-in value for the car is generally a tad lower than the price than what you would get by selling the car to a private party. To ensure you get a fair trade-in value, you need to first know the average trade-in value of your car. Here are a few tips to find the trade-in value of your car.
Do Some Research
You can do some local market research and online research to get an idea about used car prices. Visiting a local used car dealership can help you in assessing your used car’s value more appropriately. You should not consider the retail price of the used car as your car’s trade-in value. Car dealers calculate reconditioning costs up to $2,500 when purchasing used cars. If you find a similar car model like yours, take its list price and subtract $2,500 from the list price and that could be the trade-in value of your car. You can also visit websites that deal in used cars and get an idea of the retail price of similar car models. Don’t make the mistake of considering the highest retail price as the trade-in value. This is because only five percent of used cars are in excellent condition. Many used cars need reconditioning before they can be put for sale.
Know Your Car’s Condition
The car’s condition plays an important role in determining its trade-in value. You can ask a professional to conduct a mechanical inspection and give you a report. If the mechanic finds any problems, they must be fixed. The exterior and interior of the car are equally important. Make sure the car looks good and appealing from both inside and outside.
Before you approach the car dealership, spend some money on its reconditioning. Though it might not improve the trade-in value, it will ensure the value does not fall significantly. When you are aware of the average trade-in value, you can negotiate with the car dealer for a higher trade-in value than offered.