Getting The Most Trade-In Value For Your Car - How Used Car Valuation Works

In this edition of Proctor Car Tips we want to help you learn how to get the most out of your trade-in, how the process works, and how value is determined.

What is a trade-in?

A trade-in is when you use your current car's value as a form of down payment to purchase the next vehicle you plan to own.

How is the value of my car determined?

A couple different factors come in to play. The value of your trade-in will be based on the interior condition, exterior condition, and little things here and there such as tire condition, check engine lights, or even the color and rarity of your particular automobile.
How can I ensure I get maximum value on my trade-in?

To get the most value out of your trade-in, it's always smart to give it a good wash and a good vacuum before bringing it in. You don't have to pay for a full detail, but making it nice and presentable to the dealership is a big plus. It makes your car seem more desirable. If you want to further improve your cars value, it's smart to take care of the little things that you can fix on your own. If your check engine light is flashing, get it checked out and try to have it fixed before your trade-in. If you have bald tires, shop around to replace them with some budget friendly ones. If you're missing a hub cap, head over to the auto parts store and ask about cost effective options. The goal is to make your car as presentable as possible, both inside and out.
Will the trade-in value vary between dealerships?

Absolutely. It's all based on any incentives that current manufacturers have. Many times those incentives can get rolled into your trade in-value, therefore making it seem like you're getting more than what it is really worth.
Rebates are another factor that come into play. Some manufacturers offer rebates or cash backs, which they often will try to apply to your trade-in value. Your trade-in value is still worth the same, but at the end of the day, what you need to look at is your vehicles current market value, and what it's worth as it sits.

Can I trade in a car that I still owe money on?

There are two ways of looking at it. If the car's value is worth more than what you owe on the car - no problem. The unused portion will act as a down payment for your new car, and the rest will go to pay it off. If it's the other way around, the negative equity gets rolled into the new vehicle that you'll be purchasing.

Are there any other benefits of trade-ins I should know about?

There are some extra benefits worth knowing about. In some states (like Florida) you actually get tax credit from your trade in that will be applied to your new car.  So, in essence, you aren't paying full sales tax on your new car because of the trade-in.

There's one more key benefit to take note of when trading a car in. The tag that you have registered on your trade-in will get transferred over to your new car without you having to repurchase a new tag.
That's all we have for you in this edition of Proctor Car Tips! We hope this was helpful! Please let us know if you have any other questions about trade-ins!

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