Should I Trade In My Car Or Sell It
You know you want to offload your old car, but should you trade it in with a dealer or sell it? Theres no one-size-fits-all answer, but there are a few different things to weigh up. This article will go into detail on each factor, helping you to make the decision thats best for you.
If youre looking for more general information on different ways to sell your car, take a look at this guide first.
Can You Trade In A Car With Transmission Problems
Your car starts and runs but it doesnt drive? It could be a transmission problem. Can you trade in a car with a bad transmission? In many cases, you can. Dealerships are often equipped to fix the problem, but its going to cost you on your trade valuation.
Because your car doesnt drive or at least, doesnt drive well the dealer cant be sure of the rest of your cars condition. Theyll play it safe and pay you a penance for your car with transmission problems.
The Advantages Of Trading Up
Even with all the benefits of keeping your current car, trading is still an attractive option, and it comes with many benefits of its own:
- Long-Term Reliability: If one part of your car breaks, another one might follow. When you buy new, on the other hand, youll have the peace of mind that comes with knowing that you wont have to deal with such issues for a while.
- Newer Features: A newer vehicle will usually be safer, more efficient, and better-equipped than an older model. If youre lacking the most modern creature comforts, this could be a good opportunity to get them.
- Sunken Costs: If you pay for one repair, you might feel compelled to pay for the next one. This often forms a vicious cycle.
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Don’t Let The Clunker Decide For You
Everyone seems to have a theory on when to repair a car and when to get a new one. But you know your needs and your car’s history better than anyone else, so use these tips as a guide, not gospel. Buying a new car might seem like the easy way out of a high repair bill, but depending on your circumstances, it may not be the best financial decision.
On the other hand, a car that’s teetering on the edge of oblivion can keep you awake at night. It’s better to part with that car on your terms rather than waiting for it to break down at exactly the wrong time. If you make the decision while the car still has some value, you can sell it or trade it in, turning the cash into a down payment on your next car. If you also can take advantage of the incentives and rebates being offered on new cars today, you may find that a new car is within reach. And it’s hard to put a price tag on the peace of mind that a new vehicle can bring.
At The End Of The Year
Consumers are often advised to buy or lease a new car towards the end of the calendar year for a couple of reasons. First, like other salespersons, car sales staff have monthly, quarterly, and yearly quotas to hit. Its significant for the sales staff to achieve these goals as they come with incremental cash bonuses, also known as spiffs.;
If the salespersons are several cars short of their target, theyll come up with incentives to bring the cost of vehicles down as a way of making more sales. Slashed prices mean that there will be more cars rolling off the yard. This increases the demand for trade-ins at the end of the year, and as the new year starts. Thats also to say that youll enjoy tons of savings on your new purchase if you choose to trade in your car for an upgrade around this time of the year.
Another key note to make here is that most auto manufacturers release the next years models toward the end of the year. This makes it easy for you to negotiate a better value for your trade in as dealerships tend to be in a hurry to clear old stock.
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Do I Need A Roadworthy Certificate To Sell My Car
As annoying and time-consuming as they are to obtain, a roadworthy certificate is usually a necessity when selling a used car.;
So long as you want to transfer ownership to a third-party, a RWC is required by law in most states when transferring the registration from seller to buyer.;
However, if a car is being sold unregistered a roadworthy certificate is not needed. Although, be sure to remove the numberplates from the car when handing it over so you don’t receive fines from traffic offences committed by the new owner.;
Although selling cars would be a lot easier without one, a RWC is needed to maintain a base level of safety and ‘roadworthiness’ when transferring between owners. Otherwise we’d likely fill up our roads with unreliable, uneconomical and perhaps even unsafe vehicles.;
Pros Of Repairing Your Current Car
When your current vehicle starts to have problems, it’s very tempting to just throw up your hands and start looking for a new car. But the truth is, even large ticket repairs are still less than buying a new vehicle. Even if you’re looking at a $7,000 repair bill to fix a failing transmission or blown motor, that amount still won’t cover the cost of a new car. You could use it to buy another used car, but remember that the “new” used car will come with its own issues.
There are a number of costs associated with buying a new car, including the higher registration and insurance fees, the immediate loss of value, plus the monthly payments and the down payment. If you really like your old car, then you might also be more motivated to hang onto it by fixing it up.
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You Owe More Than It’s Worth
If you bought your car new, rapid depreciation during the first year of ownership could increase your chances of being underwater on your loan, which isn’t ideal. Because you owe more than the dealer is willing to pay, the trade-in won’t reduce the cost of the new vehicle at all.
The result is you’ll have a higher loan amount on the new carwhich increases your chances of getting underwater on that loan tooor you’ll need to pay the lender the difference.
How To Find The Trade
You can determine your used car or truck approximate trade-in value by looking at large used vehicle websites or by using our online trade valuation tools or by arranging an appointment to come into a dealer for a no-cost professional trade-in appraisal. Note, as was mentioned earlier in the article, if you decide to visit used auto classified websites, you can find a rough estimate of your vehicles value if you were to sell the vehicle privately and not have it traded in at a dealer.
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When Is It Time To Buy Another Car
Here are a few scenarios in which we’d opt for buying another vehicle:
- The repairs are becoming more frequent, and the costs are hard to keep up with.
- The car leaves you stranded often, putting you in a potentially dangerous situation or making you late to work.
- The repair in question will cost more than half the value of the vehicle.
- You had already planned on getting something new, but your mechanic clues you in on an impending major repair on your old car. Hold off and let the next owner handle it. Just be upfront about it when it comes time to sell.
Extend The Life Of Your Car
If you are not yet faced with making the tough decision to fix up or trade in your vehicle, there are steps you can take to prevent or avoid costly repairs.
Get your new car maintained at its proper intervals to avoid problems and breakdowns. Use our maintenance guide to learn the recommended service intervals for your vehicle. Maintaining a much older car means paying close attention to items that commonly break down. We recommend finding a good, reliable local mechanic as a less expensive alternative to a dealership service department.
If you’re experiencing issues with your car and don’t know whether things are likely to get worse, look for advice on message boards and forums for the make and model of your car.; Other people have probably been down this road before you. You can get a preview from them of the problems associated with your vehicle as it ages.
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When Should You Trade In Your Car Dont Listen To What Others Say Run The Numbers Yourself
A reader writes in describing a debate shes having with her husband:
Im not sure but someplace on your site I think I saw something about how often to trade in your old car. Our SUV is a 2005 with 55,000 miles on it. My husband says its time to trade it in. He says the longer we drive it the worse off we will be. Im not so sure. We will pay cash for the difference if we trade. Can you give us any pointers?
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What To Fix Before Trading In A Car
The better condition your old car is in, the better its private sale and trade-in value, obviously. Whats not obvious is how much work you should put into your old car before bringing it to the dealership for a trade-in appraisal. Major repairs are best left to the prosthey can do it for less money, and they wont add the cost you paid for repairs to the trade-in value. Small fixes, however, are worth the effort.
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Experts Say Now Is The Best Time To Trade
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Used car prices are skyrocketing as dealerships deal with a shortage in used and new vehicles.
Superior Hyundai, GMC, and Cadillac General Manager George Brunner said now is the best time to trade in your used vehicle.
Brunner said people are making money on their used car trade-ins right now. He said used cars will probably never be worth as much as they are right now and they dont know how long this trend will last.
Brunner said it is partly because of pandemic related shortages in car chips, that is slowing down the production of new vehicles, so more people are shopping for used.
He said it doesnt matter how old or how many miles the car has, it is still worth a lot right now.
Most people are shocked when they find out what their trade is worth, Brunner said. So, at that point, they may not have been looking to trade cars, but when the numbers are this high, you almost have to. Might as well take advantage of it while you can.
Brunner said its better to bring your used car into a dealership in person for a trade in quote. He said you will likely get more money than if you get a quote online, because dealerships can touch and drive cars in person.
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It May Be Better To Sell Your Car To Carmax
Lately, a lot of people are selling their car to companies like Carmax instead of trading it in or selling it privately. Youve probably seen commercials for Carmax on television. You may have even heard ads on the radio. They advertise for a reason they want as many people as possible to sell them their cars. This way, they can raise the price and turn around and sell it to someone else.Some of the benefits of selling your car to Carmax include:
- You get a written offer not just a verbal estimate or appraisal
- You leave their shop with payment in hand there is no waiting period
- Theyll arrange to pay off your current loan
- They dont care so much about how clean your car is theyre not as picky as a private buyer or dealership
- Theyll buy your car whether you buy one from them or not
- Youll get a free appraisal within minutes
- If you live in certain regions, you can even get your appraisal online
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How Do I Get The Best Price On My Trade
To get the best price on a trade-in, you should first research the appraisal for your vehicle. This will give you a good idea of what you can get. Research vehicles that you are interested in buying. Then, gather quotes from several dealers.
Only bring up the trade-in once youve settled on the price for the new vehicle. Then, use the information from the quotes you gathered to negotiate the trade-in value. Be ready to walk away if you cannot get the trade-in value you are looking for.
Find Out How Much Your Car Is Worth
There are a lot of things that go into your vehicle’s value. How old it is, how many miles it has, its condition, extra features and other factors can all help you set a reasonable price.
It’s also important to note, though, that each car has two different values: One as a trade-in and one as a private-party sale. In virtually every case, your vehicle is worth more in a private-party sale than as a trade-in.
That said, the gap between the two values can vary, and depending on your car, you may not actually lose much by trading it in. Visit a website like Kelley Blue Book or NADA Guides to find out how much your car is worth.
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Pros Of Buying A New Car
Along with the arguments for repairing your old car, there are definitely arguments for buying a new one. Probably the biggest one is to be worry-free for a while on car repairs and future breakdowns. New cars typically come with warranties that cover repairs within a certain period.
If you’ve been spending a lot of time getting your older car repaired, you might see the appeal in trading it in for a new one. Another reason to trade in your car is if your car just seems to have a lot of problems. Maybe there are weird glitches in the electrical system, or perhaps the interior is really worn or the paint is starting to seriously fade.
rAll of these are issues that simply might not be worth the time and money to repair. Other issues include safety and gas mileage. There’s no doubt that newer vehicles tend to have advanced safety features versus old ones. Most new cars are more fuel-efficient than older ones as well.
How To Sell A Car That Has Been In An Accident
Instead of paying out-of-pocket to fix your car, why not recoup as much as you can as it is? CarBrain offers an easy way to sell your less-than-perfect car in as-is condition so you dont have to deal with it.
The process is simple and straightforward:
- Request an offer from CarBrain for your accident-damaged car.
- Provide your cars year, make, and model.
- Fill in the additional information including the mileage and the extent of the damage.
- Pictures may be necessary to help give an accurate offer.
- Well give you a guaranteed offer for your car, as-is and where-is.
- Our car towing is free, and usually picks your car up in 24-48 hours!
- After you accept our quote, well bring you a check at pick-up..
With CarBrain, you dont need to ask hard questions like, is it worth fixing my car after an accident. Its easy, its convenient, and theres no fee to use CarBrain. See how much you can get for your car right now.
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What To Look For When Negotiating Your Trade
You’ll get the best deal by keeping the purchase and trade-in negotiations separate. If you allow a salesperson to mix the two, it gives him or her too much opportunity to manipulate the figures. It could end up that a good price in one area is canceled out by a poor price in the other.
We suggest that you nail down the price of the car you want to purchase first, then discuss your trade-in allowance. Because dealers make good money reselling trade-ins, there’s some incentive for him or her to be competitive with a trade-in offer.
Keep your eye on the bottom line. What’s important is the net amount you have to pay. Be sure to read and understand the sales contract before you sign it. If you have a problem with any terms or conditions, ask questions. After you sign, you’ll have little recourse.
Trade In Damaged Cars For Cash
The value of your car is always reduced after an accident. Based on Kelley Blue Book and the National Association of Automobile Dealer values, your car’s price goes down significantly. Your diminished value will be calculated using those KBB and NADA prices for your car, while taking into account the resale value of a damaged car with repair costs. Because these figures vary based on make, model, year, trim, and damage, there is no standard value loss.;
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