Get the Best Deal for You Trade-In

Despite readily available information on car values, one of the biggest mistakes people make is not knowing what their current vehicle is worth before shopping to replace it with a new one. A Google search for “used car prices” will get you at least a dozen sites that can give you an estimate of what your car is worth, some of the most popular being Kelly Blue Book, Edmunds, Auto Trader, True Car, Car Gurus, and

To make sure you get an estimate that based on your personal situation, there are two very important factors that you need to provide: who are you selling to and what is the condition of your vehicle, including mileage and installed features. While selling your used car privately will likely get you more money than selling to a dealer, many people don’t have the time or desire to meet with potential buyers, negotiate price, verify payments, or help buyer get financing.

While not every used car dealer may be interested in buying your car, most will accept your trade-in regardless of condition, mileage or other factors. But you must be realistic about what you are selling. One easy thing you can do is to make sure your car is clean before showing it to a dealer.

First impressions are important, so making sure your car looks its best. A few hours of cleaning could increase your car’s value. Remove any junk you’ve accumulated, vacuum the carpets, clean the seats and dashboard. Give it a thorough wash and wax, and don’t forget to clean the tires. A clean car will almost always make it worth more. And even if it needs more cleaning than you can give it, a good detailing job can increase your car’s value more than the cost to get it done.

Minor car repairs can also help to increase the value of your trade-in. There may be a few slight annoyances you’ve been living with for some time, like a squeaky door, that you don’t even notice them. But those are the type of things that will give a dealer the impression you haven’t done a good job of maintaining the vehicle. Investing in repairing those little issues can go a long way in improving the value of your trade-in. Even paying for minor bodywork, like getting dings and scratches removed, can pay off.

And even though the car looks good, you will usually get a better trade-in value if you can show documentation that the vehicle was well maintained. Bring oil change and other maintenance-related paperwork with you to show that you kept it in good running condition. But, regardless of what the value estimates are, and how much effort and money you may have put into getting the vehicle looking good, it’s still up to the dealer to accept your trade, and how much he will give you for it.

One of the dealer’s concerns is how quickly he can sell your vehicle to another buyer. Typical, the dealer will inspect it inside and out, take it for a test drive, and estimate costs, if any, to bring it up to a sellable level. If the repair costs are too much, he would probably sell it on the wholesale market. So the bottom line is how do know if you are getting a fair deal on your trade-in. If you have a clean vehicle, with no damages, no accidents, and reasonable mileage for its age, it should bring you a fair trade-in value. But don’t forget, it’s up to you to do advance research to know what a fair price should be for your specific vehicle.

At G&E Motors we pride ourselves on giving our customer the best value possible for their trades.