Selling on Your Own vs. Trading in with a Dealer
One of the considerations many face when purchasing or leasing a new or pre-owned vehicle is what to do with their current car. Many believe they can sell their current vehicle on their own and achieve a higher price than they could when trading in the vehicle with a dealer. While this can be the case, there are several factors to keep in mind. First, selling cars is hard. You must first make the vehicle available for sale, then attract “prospective buyers” to your home or business, and then trust that their money is good or that they are who they say they are.
These factors do not come into play when trading at a reputable dealership. While you may be able to make the DIY system work for you, the best way to trade in a car is working with a trusted source.
How to Ensure a Safe Trade
Here are some tips for trading in your vehicle safely and effectively:
- There is a sales tax savings on the value of your trade-in. For instance, if your trade in is worth $10,000 and you live in an 8% sales tax area, your net realized value is $10,800, as you do not pay the 8% on the value of the trade. You would need to sell it for at least $10,800 to a private party to realize the same value.
- There are several “authorities” on used car values. Blue Book, Black Book, NADA, Edmunds, and Carfax are just a few of the many resources on used car values. However, these guides can differ by thousands of dollars on the same vehicle. The reason? They are all just guides, and opinions based on regional data and demand. While it is valuable to educate yourself on an approximate value, don’t focus too much on what one of these guides says. At the end of the day, a car’s value is based on condition, service history, and supply and demand.
- If you have decided you would like to trade in your vehicle, use some common sense when taking it to a dealership. First, clean it. There is only one chance to make a first impression. Sticky steering wheels, food under the seat, and a filthy exterior lead an appraiser to think the car has been neglected mechanically as well. Be prepared to show all the service history and maintenance of the vehicle. Also, if the car has had an accident or repair work, an invoice showing the amount will take the guesswork out of the severity and cost. Finally, any documents showing an extended service contract/warranty is a clear sign that the vehicle has been properly maintained and cared for and reduces the chance of costly repairs.
- Finally, if you have a pay off on a loan, know that amount and who the lender is. Nothing delays negotiation and paperwork like an incorrect payoff or being unable to locate the current loan.
Used vehicles are in high demand! If yours is properly cared for and you follow these tips for trading in your vehicle, you will be able to maximize the value through a dealership exchange. Contact the team at INFINITI OF DENVER to see if our options are the best way for you to trade in your car.