to Determine Your Car's Value when Selling
The first issue you need to address is what price you put on your
used car. A great place to do this - even create a report for a
potential buyer - is at Consumer Guide.
To begin calculating a price, research the wholesale value of the
car that is the price dealers are paying for the car. Pricing
guides published by the National Automobile Dealers Associations
Official Used Car Guide will tell you the wholesale price of your
car. Other good price guides include the Kelley Blue Book and Edmunds
Price Guide. These books are sold at newsstands and bookstores and
are available in the reference section of most libraries.
Find out how much vehicles similar to yours are being priced at
retail. Check out similar models in the classified ads of your local
newspaper. (You can find the automotive classifieds for more than
100 newspapers online here on cars.com.) Other resources include
local publications that specialize in private-sale vehicles, such
as Auto, Auto Mart, Auto Trader. Check out how high local dealers
are pricing equivalent vehicles.
If you have a special-interest or collectible car, check Cars of
Particular Interest (CPI) Value Guide or Hemmings Motor News
which are available at most large newsstands or the classifieds
in motoring magazines. You also can consult members of a local car
club or a professional auto insurance appraiser.
Once you know the wholesale, trade-in and private sale values,
you can come up with a price that should be lower than the dealers
suggested retail price but higher than the price a dealer would
pay for a trade-in or the wholesale auction price.
The hardest thing for people is their emotional attachment to their
cars. Many people think his or her car is the nicest one there is,
which it may be. There is still a limit to how much the car is worth.
Also, the value of your car has nothing to do with the loan payoff
[the amount still owed to the bank]. Many people feel that they
should get whatever is equal to their loan payoff for their car.
The two are unrelated. If you are upside-down [owe more than the
car is worth] as they call it, don't worry. Most people who have
a loan payoff are.
Checking the VIN number on a car before
selling it can let you and the buyer know that it is not a salvaged
vehicle, or in commons terms, a lemon.
A Vehicle Identification Number encodes specific information about
a vehicle, including country of manufacture, manufacturer, model,
body style and even engine and other information. To be safe, check
your car history to confirm
it has a clean bill of health before selling.