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What Goes Into Determining Trade-in Value

trade in

Consumer Websites Sometimes Off

With the proliferation of consumer websites that provide trade-in and retail car values, consumers are armed with more information than ever before when they go to purchase a new or used vehicle. On the whole, the proliferation of information is a good thing, but sometimes a little knowledge doesn’t show the whole truth. One good example is the trade-in value of a vehicle, which can vary greatly depending on the dealership, geographic location, type of car and vehicle condition. Consumer websites are good for providing a starting point for your vehicle’s value, but prepare yourself for a shock if you rely on that information too heavily. The used vehicle managers at Chapman Hyundai are expert at determining an accurate trade-in value that makes sense for both you and the dealership.

Your Car is Probably not ‘Excellent’

Of course you love your car. It’s taken you to ball games and on dates and to a bunch of other fun things that have created lasting memories in your life. Unfortunately, sentiment is the one thing that doesn’t really enter into determining a trade-in value. When you go online to determine your car’s worth, you’ll be asked to rate its condition. Very few cars are actually in “excellent” condition at the time of trade-in. Most have dings and scratches and a somewhat worn interior. To determine an actual trade-in value, you are probably better off clicking on the “fair” option.

Payoff Doesn’t Equal Value

Depending on how long you’ve had your car, how much money you put down when you bought it and what your interest rate is, there’s a good possibility that you may owe more than the car is worth at the time of trade-in. Dealerships are under no obligation to give you what you owe on the car, although if they do make a deal they are required to pay your old vehicle off. Dealers can sometimes add the amount you are upside down into the new car loan, or you may be able to put some additional money down to make up the difference.

Many Variables Affect Trade-in

The appraiser at a dealership like Chapman Hyundai is entrusted to provide a trade-in number that you will accept while still making money for the company. Along with condition, mileage and popularity, other factors that influence the trade-in value are the saturation of your vehicle on the dealership lot and in the marketplace. If you are trading in a Hyundai Santa Fe and the market is full of similar vehicles, expect to get a lower value than if you were trading something in more rare. It’s important to keep an open mind when negotiating a trade-in value and see the big picture from the dealer’s point of view.

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