Buying a new car is always fun, but it can also take a bit of homework if you want to ensure you get the best deal, and that includes maximizing the amount of money you can get on trading in your current vehicle. If you want the best deal possible, you'll want to take the time to ensure that you maximize the value of your current vehicle before you head to the local dealer. Here are some tips to keep in mind if you want to come out of your next deal for a new car feeling good about the transaction.
Always Look Up the Value Before You Walk Onto the Lot
There are a variety of free resources online that can give you an estimate of how much money your vehicle should be worth on a trade-in. The value will of course vary depending on what kind of condition your vehicle is in, ranging from like-new to excellent and then down to fair or poor. Take your best guess as to what kind of shape your car is in and then get a rough estimate that you can walk into the local dealer with so you have a good benchmark to gauge any offers against.
Fix Your Car Up Before You Take It In
Just like when selling your house, your "curb appeal" matters when trying to trade in your current vehicle. Dealers like to see cars that won't take much work to turn around and resell. If you have minor cosmetic damage on the outside of the car, see if there is a way you can fix the issue yourself, like buffing out a minor scratch before you take it in. You should also of course vacuum the car and give it a quick bath at a local car wash. If your car has more serious damage, there might not be much you can do, but you should still work to get the car looking otherwise clean.
Find a Dealer That Will Negotiate with You or Shop Around
Some car dealers have a specific set of rules they follow when it comes to trade-ins and might not be willing to give you any more than what their computer says. Try and find a local dealer that negotiates trade-ins and you might be able to get better value for your car. Also, don't forget you don't have to go to just one dealer, you can shop around for the best deal.
For more information, contact a company like The Car Buying Concierge.