A significant cause of concern for many people when buying a vehicle is the trade-in value that they can expect to get for their car or truck. Some people think that a trade-in value is determined simply by looking up a number online.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the case and there are numerous factors that help determine how much a trade-in is worth. The following things are what will determine your vehicle’s trade-in value:

1. Year

How new (or old) your vehicle is will play a major role in determining its value. Dealerships will pay more for vehicles that they are able to resell, and newer models are always easier to sell than older ones. If you have a much older vehicle, you’re less likely to get a lot of money for it simply because it won’t get much attention from car shoppers when it’s put out for sale.

2. Make & Model

Not all brands and models are created equal when it comes to their resale value, and therefore their trade-in value. Some brands hold their value quite well while others don’t. Similarly, certain models might be highly-sought after even if the make isn’t very desirable, and vice-versa.

3. Condition

If you’ve taken great care of your vehicle then you’ll get a higher trade-in value than if you haven’t. Vehicles with scratches and dings on the exterior, or ripped or damaged upholstery will fetch less than those whose owners have babied and maintained them. This is why it might pay to park your car away from everyone else when at the grocery store.

4. Mileage

Mileage is a big factor in determining trade-in value because it’s one of the things a potential buyer will be looking at when it’s being resold. Even if you’re trading in a newer vehicle that’s in great condition, a high odometer reading will reduce its value significantly. Of course, you have to drive your vehicle as much as you need to, but simply remember that it’s worth less with higher miles.

5. Local Market

This is one determining factor that some people forget about. The market in which the dealership is located will play a significant role in how much a vehicle is worth. Perhaps it’s a market where trucks sell like crazy but smaller vehicles don’t or a market where RWD cars aren’t suited to the climate. Your geographic area will absolutely affect your trade-in value.

6. Desirability

This factor will likely determine the trade-in value more than any other factor. A dealership won’t offer you a great trade-in value for a vehicle that they believe will be difficult to sell. On the flip side, if the vehicle is a sought-after one, you’re likely to get the value you’re looking for.

The best way to figure out how much a dealership will offer you for your trade-in is by contacting a salesperson and bringing the vehicle in. Please let me know if I can help!