4 Tips to Boost Your Car’s Dealership Trade-In Value
Right now, trade-in values are at a high, and that means savvy buyers are eager to cash in. Your ride may not be in mint condition, but there are some easy steps you can take to make sure you get the best return when it comes time to swap it for something shinier. In this guide, we review some important tips on how to get the most money for your trade-in vehicle from the team at Matador Motors.
Boost Your Curb Appeal
A lot of the appraisal process is in the cosmetics, so the easiest way to increase the value of your trade-in is to give it a thorough cleaning or have it professionally detailed. If you decide to go the DIY route, here are some points of focus:
- Clear out all garbage and personal belongings
- Deep clean the carpets, floor mats, and upholstery
- Wipe down interior surfaces and windows
If your vehicle has scratches, small dents, and other minor flaws, you should consider getting those fixed as well.
Know Your Worth
In a perfect utopia, dealerships would offer you the tippy-top cash value for your trade-in every time. But that’s not the world we live in, so doing your own research is key to getting a fair deal. Kelley Blue Book and Edmunds are some of the industry’s top trusted resources for estimating the value of your car. Having these numbers will serve as a great jumping point for negations if you find that your actual trade-in offer isn’t adding up.
Negotiate Your Trade-In Separately
You may be tempted to bundle your new car purchase and your trade-in into one easy deal, but just like that one 1994 hit Offspring song says, “You gotta keep ’em separated.” Folding all those figures together only makes it easier for the shadier dealers to hide the true cash value of their offer by crunching it down to a projected monthly payment. When you negotiate your trade-in separately, you can be sure you’ll get the numbers straight up so you can make sure they live up to what the online guides say you should be getting.
Leverage is key, and strength comes in numbers. We recommend getting trade-in quotes from at least three dealerships. You can use the highest offer to negotiate a deal once you decide which dealer you want to buy your next car from.