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Steps to Take Before Trading In Your Car - Dallas, TX

10 Steps To Take Before Trading in Your Car

Posted at Thu, Oct 6, 2022 11:30 AM

Trading in a vehicle can be a process you do before you purchase a new vehicle or just to get some extra money from old cars you have. Before you trade in your vehicle, there are some steps you can take to make sure your car is ready for trade-in and that you have important information for the trade. Keep reading to learn about the steps you can take before you trade in your car.

10 Steps To Take Before Trading in Your Car

When you prepare to trade in your vehicle, there are some steps you can take to make the process easier and faster. These steps can also help you negotiate a better price for your trade-in vehicle, allowing you to receive more money from the trade-in. Finally, taking these steps can help you feel more confident about selling your vehicle and help you know the information for making the trade.

Clean the Inside and Outside of Your Car

Cleaning the inside and outside of your car is an important step for several reasons. First, it allows you to find any damage or minor issues you can fix before you trade your car. Second, it allows you to create a presentable vehicle for a car dealership, making it more likely they offer a good price for your vehicle. Finally, cleaning your vehicle can help you ensure you don't leave any important personal items in your vehicle, making sure any sensitive information remains private and that you lose nothing during the trade-in process.

Inspect Your Car

Inspecting your car is important because it can help you find damage to the vehicle. There are two parts to this process. The first is to inspect the vehicle yourself so you know what issues are present in the vehicle. This allows you to find and address minor issues yourself. Then, you can inspect your vehicle at an auto shop or the dealership, creating a report that helps you know the important information about your vehicle. A third-party inspection can help you find more information about your vehicle before starting the actual trade-in process. 

Repair and Fix Minor Issues Yourself

Before you trade in your car, fixing minor issues with your vehicle (such as chipped paint or malfunctioning headlights) can help you get a better value for your vehicle. This is because the dealership where you trade in your vehicle will note fewer problems, making your vehicle appear more valuable for a trade-in than vehicles with minor issues. This can also help the recipient of the vehicle avoid the costs of making the repairs themselves.

Gather Vehicle Documents

There are often several documents that accompany a vehicle at trade-in. These include the car's title, registration, and service records. Each of these documents is important for a potential buyer and can help the dealership accept your vehicle for trade-in faster. You won't need to get a vehicle's history report, as the dealership is going to pull one from the records itself. 

Bring Extras Included With Your Car

Some vehicles have extras that are part of the vehicle trade-in process. For example, some vehicles have an SD card that helps their navigation or stereo system operate. Bringing these to the trade-in can help you get the full value for your vehicle while leaving them out of the trade-in can cause you to receive less money from the vehicle.

Find the Estimated Value of Your Car

Find the estimated trade-in value of your vehicle through your own research. The opinion of a third party can help you get the maximum value for that vehicle. This process can include researching your vehicle's current trade-in value online or talking to an appraiser to get your car's value. With this information, you can negotiate with your dealership for the best price possible because you're well-informed.

Get Multiple Offers for Your Car

Different locations may offer different values for your car. Looking at several dealerships can help you find the best deal for your vehicle and allow you to get the most money from your trade-in. If all of them offer similar values, you can pick the one that gives you some additional benefits, like putting the value toward a new vehicle purchase or being near your home to make the trade faster.

Negotiate Your Trade-In Separately

Many people trading in their vehicles want to use the money they get to buy themselves a new car. If you're doing this, try to negotiate the trade-in separately from the new vehicle purchase — doing them separately can actually help you get more money from your trade-in. After making the trade, you can start a new process to purchase a vehicle with those fresh funds.

Choose the Correct Trade-In Time

Sometimes, the time of year can affect what sort of trade-in offers you get. If you research the trade-in value early, you can monitor how the prices change based on the time of year, and then you can choose the best time to sell your car. When buyers have more interest in that vehicle due to the season or market changes, you can get the best value when you trade in.

Understand Your Finances

Finally, learn about how your trade-in might affect your own finances. A car can be a big financial asset, so you'll need to look at how trading in your vehicle will impact your taxes, insurance costs, and savings. For example, if you weren't making any payments on your old vehicle because it was paid off, you'll have to look at how a new vehicle's payments would change your monthly budget.

Now that we've shared steps you can take for trading in your vehicle, you can go forth with confidence and get the most value for your trade-in. At Planet Ford Dallas, you can find services and vehicles to meet your needs. Contact us today for more information.

Photo Credit: Car Interior by Marina is licensed with CC BY-SA 2.0

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