If you're looking to replace your car with either a new model or used, then you may be considering the possibility of trading in your current vehicle to help towards the cost of your new purchase. Although trading your current vehicle won't necessarily get you the same amount of cash as selling it privately, it does save you time and hassle that's for sure. But what can you do to get the most money on your trade-in?
Here are our top tips on how you can do just that:
1. Start straight away
If you're looking to increase the value of your vehicle because you envisage selling your vehicle at some point in the future, then you should probably begin doing this from the get-go. By staying on top of regular maintenance and other preventative measures, you could essentially be increasing the value of your vehicle and extending its lifespan.
2. Figure out what your vehicle is worth
Before trading in your vehicle, it's worth conducting a little bit of homework, not a huge amount, just a little to give yourself an insight into how much you can expect to receive. There are plenty of websites that you can explore to gain some basic information about your vehicle and an idea of how much your vehicle is selling for within your area. If you do use online resources to gain an estimate of your vehicle, then do ensure that you are as specific as possible when providing information in relation to make, year, mileage and condition of your vehicle. To ensure that you're getting the best deal on your trade-in, do the maths and use this to determine your asking price.
3. Clean up
If you want to receive the most money for your vehicle, which I'm sure you do, then presenting a clean car is the simplest way to boost an offer on your trade-in. By investing in a good wash and wax, you could potentially increase the value of your vehicle just by giving it a little tender love and care. Although this requires spending some time and money, ensuring that every little detail on your car is as perfect as can be can increase the amount your vehicle is worth.
4. Negotiate trade-in price separately
When you head off to the dealers try to ensure that you negotiate the price of the new or pre-owned vehicle first before you begin to discuss the price of your trade-in. Dealers do often make more money on used cars as opposed to new ones and when it comes to trade-in, most people get distracted by purchasing a new vehicle and lose focus on the vehicle they are trading in and how much they could receive.
5. Document maintenance and repairs
When your vehicle undergoes maintenance and repairs, do ensure that you document this within the service manual. If you attend a specific dealership to always carry out any maintenance work that is required on your vehicle, then it's worth making this your first port of call when it comes to trading in your vehicle as that dealer will be familiar with all the previous work that has been carried out and maybe more inclined to offer a generous valuation in terms of trading in. Ensure that you keep all of your big receipts and document everything as this will give you a better chance of leveraging your expenses.
6. Shop until you drop
The most important thing to remember is to never accept an offer that you're not comfortable and happy with. When you go to the first dealership, don't think that you have to buy from there as you want to get it over with as this can often lead to making a big mistake. There are plenty of dealerships out there with plenty to offer so it may be a good idea to visit a few before you make a firm decision. You don't want to settle for less than you should so it's a good idea to take your vehicle to no fewer than perhaps three to see what you can get.
If you're unsure as to whether you should trade in your car with a dealer or sell it, then you may want to weigh up the different advantages and disadvantages of each before reaching a decision and we're here to help with that. For more information, head over to our selling page on the different ways you can sell your car.