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Trade In Car Value - How Do you know if You Are Getting Fair Trade in Value on Your Car?

vehicle dealer price deal

You like to ride in style so, after you’ve finished making the last of the 48 payments on your Mini Cooper, you decide to take it down to the dealership and replace it with a brand new model. To your dismay, the car that set you back about $25,000 just 4 years ago is now only worth $5500. At least, that is what the Dealer is willing to offer you on a trade-in. Are you getting fair value on the vehicle you are thinking of trading in? How do you know if a Dealer is low-balling you and your car trade value should be higher? While it is impossible to determine exactly what is a fair value on your trade-in, there are ways to assure that you are getting a reasonable amount.

There are many factors that go in to determining the value of a trade-in. The starting point is the year and make of the model. Next, you must determine the overall condition of the car. Does it have any body damage or rust? Is everything in excellent working condition? Most trade-ins have at least a few imperfections that can range from the need to replace the tires, install new brakes or fix a broken radio to more serious problems like a bad transmission or a major oil leak. The more severe the maladies, the less your trade-in will be worth. On the other hand, having desirable options like power seats or a sunroof can boost the price.

When you are shopping for a new car, you will be greeted by a salesperson, exchange some idle chatter and then, he will ask you if you have a trade-in. Assuming you do, he will then ask for the keys so his team can go over the vehicle and get you the best possible trade-in value for your car. They will go over the car and evaluate it to determine what the car is worth. Remember, when you trade in a car, you are not getting retail value, but wholesale. The Dealer needs to have room to make a profit if he decides to resell your vehicle.

There are benchmarks that can give you a good idea of what your used car might be worth. A trip to the Kelly Blue Book or Edmunds website will allow you to look up used car prices. There you can find some good information on used car values. Prices for both retail and wholesale sales are shown. Retail would be the price you might expect to pay if you went down to a used car dealer and bought a model from a specific year. Wholesale is the price you might get if you traded in or sold your vehicle to a dealer. In both cases, car values are based on the condition of the car. They range from excellent, where your vehicle is in immaculate condition , to good or average, where you might have a few small problems, to poor, where a lot of work might be required. Use this source as a general starting point before going down to negotiate a deal. Don’t overestimate the condition of your vehicle.

In the real world, you can’t always go by the book (Kelly or Edmunds) when figuring fair car trade-in value. New Car Dealers are really not overly interested in making a big profit on your trade-in. They look at it as a way of expediting a sale of a new vehicle. Consequently, when you get a “high” trade-in value as part of your overall deal, the price you are paying for the new car may also be high. It can get quite confusing trying to figure out what price you are actually paying for that new car. Did the Dealer raise the selling price to compensate for an inflated trade-in value? It’s a game, a sales technique to make the customer feel like he or she is getting a good deal. If you want to see if you are getting fair value for your trade-in, just tell the dealer you don’t want the new car, but would like to sell him the old one. If he agrees to the deal, he has obviously low-balled you on the potential trade-in. If he hems and haws and insists that you buy the car as part of the deal, well, you can assume that he artificially inflated the trade-in value to get you to buy a new car.

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