Save Money on a New Car: Tips to Increase the Value of Your Trade-In
When it comes time to buying a new car, most people spend hours online searching for the perfect car at the best price. What they don’t realize though, is that to get the best deal, it is just as important to fully research what their current car is worth as a trade-in. If you understand the value of your car, do some basic reconditioning on it, and locate all your maintenance records and receipts, the dealership may end up wanting your old car more than you want the new one they are trying to sell you.
Understand What Your Car is Worth
The typical dealer purchases hundreds, if not thousands, of cars from auction and as trade-ins every year. In order to figure out what they should spend, they have access to many pricing guides including the dealer only Black Book. Consumers, on the other hand, also have ways to research what their cars are worth. Currently, Kelly Blue Book and N.A.D.A are great, dependable online resources for car owners. If you are disappointed with what those websites have to tell you about the worth of your vehicle, you might even be able to increase its value without expending too much effort.
Go the Extra Mile to Make It Look Its Best
You can’t change what’s under the hood of your old beater, but you can recondition what’s on the outside. When you make an effort to recondition your vehicle and attempt to bring out its best face, it looks like it is worth more money. And while you might not be able to fool a salesman with a carwash, a paint touch up, or by investing in that hubcap you’ve been missing for years, he may be able to fool the car’s next owner. If he thinks he can get a little more money for it, he might be willing to give you a little more cash toward your new car.
Dig Up Old Maintenance Receipts
Another thing you can do to increase your car’s trade-in value is to bring any maintenance records and receipts with you to the dealership. This was a problem for me, however, because my dad did all the repairs on my old car. But if you’ve got them, bring them. This way, you can show the dealership that you’ve taken good care of your car and they can find a buyer for it instead of sending it right to auction.
Even if you’ve done all of this and the dealer won’t budge on his offer, don’t forget that you can always try and talk him down off the sticker price on the car you are interested in as well. You can also shop around for offers on your old car at different dealerships. Just because the car of your dreams is at one dealership, doesn’t mean you have to trade your car in there too.
This guest post was contributed by Brittany Larson. She recently traded in her old Ford Taurus for something newer and more reliable at Concordville Nissan .