Increase Your Vehicle’s Trade-in Value

A stock photo of people completing a deal.

Best Tips for Improving Your Car’s Trade-in Value

One of the most powerful tools in a car buyer’s possession is their current vehicle. Using the vehicle you have now to help defray some of the cost of the next one is a great financial move. There are several factors that go into a dealership determining how much an owner will get for their trade-in, very few of them can be controlled at the time of sale. However, there are still a lot of things you can do to help your own cause and get the most for your trade-in possible. Our team put together their best tips for improving a car’s trade-in value. Let’s take a look at what they came up with.

READ MORE: How Do I Do a Test Drive Right?

How Do You Get the Best Trade-in Price?

Missing documents is one of the biggest headaches people run into when they’re trading in their previous car, truck or SUV for another. The sales team at Autohouse Kingston asks people to bring in the vehicle’s title and registration documents when completing the trade-in process. Additionally, include as many of the other accessories that came with the vehicle as you can find. Our team would like to have all sets of keys, floor mats, cargo nets and the owner’s manual.

Four More Steps to Take to Increase Trade-in Value

  1. Wash & Detail: You wouldn’t pay top-dollar for a dirty car that has a back seat filled with garbage. Neither will most dealerships. Even if you’ve never previously paid expert detailers to clean your vehicle, this might be the time to do it. Making the interior as clean as possible will only help increase the vehicle’s secondary value.
  2. Fix Small Things: Have you been putting off replacing a burned-out bulb of one type or another? This is the time to get it taken care of. Also, our experts suggest restoring the headlight lenses, if they have become cloudy or hazy over time. 
  3. Attention to Detail: Refill the windshield washer fluid and replace the windshield wiper blades. These kinds of things really do make a difference when it’s time to make a deal.
  4. Dings, Dents & Scratches: Accidents happen when owning a vehicle for a long time. Dings, dents, scratches happen. It may be worthwhile to have these imperfections fixed before having the vehicle appraised at the dealership. 

Should Major Mechanical Repairs Be Completed?

Certainly, a car, truck, or SUV that runs perfectly that is in peak possible condition is going to fetch a higher price than a junker that needs to be towed to the lot. However, some financial experts suggest leaving major mechanical repairs to the experts at the dealership. These types of fixes are often expensive and are unlikely to be recouped at the time of trade-in. 

If you’re interested in getting a rough idea of how much your vehicle is worth, please use our free online appraisal tool. Also, check out our inventory if you would like to see what we have available for sale right now at Autohouse Kingston.