How Does Trading in a Car for Another Car Work?

October 11, 2020 6:31 pm

Unless you love spending time selling, buying, wheeling, dealing, and headaches, trading in your car for another car is the ultimate inconvenience. You can cross two big transactions off your to-do list at the same time. But how does it work? Let’s go through the process so you’re prepared, get the best trade-in price, and drive away in a car that’s a better fit for you.

First, decide if it is the right time to trade in your vehicle. It may be if your car is costing you money beyond what you’ve budgeted for. In addition to payments, you may be dealing with excess fuel costs, additional maintenance, or hard-to-find specialty parts. You may also want to take the step if trade-in car dealerships are offering incentives. For example, they may have a holiday special or at the end of the year, they may be trying to make room for new models.

It’s also a good move if your loan is older, you don’t have a prepayment penalty, and you do not want the hassle of trying to sell your vehicle privately.

The next step is to do some research. You’ll want to know as much as you can about your vehicle (make, model, condition, features, repair history, payoff information, etc.). Contact your lender to see what you owe and whether you have positive equity (i.e. the car is worth more than you owe) or negative equity (i.e. the car is worth less than you owe). You can still trade in a vehicle with negative equity, but you’ll have to pay the difference. The goal is to make the best deal possible. Also, spend some time on KBB.com to determine comparable values. These will apply for private sales, but it’s good to have a ballpark in which to work.

Get your car in tip-top shape. A clean, well-maintained vehicle will get you a higher trade-in value than one that rolls into the dealership dirty, scuffed, and looking a little worse for the wear. Spend some time cleaning and detailing, as well as resolving minor issues.

Finally, find a reliable, reputable trade-in car dealership that will work with you to get you the value you deserve – and the new pre-owned vehicle you want. Visit Palm Beach Auto Sales Outlet to learn more. We’re here to make the promise smooth, seamless, easy, convenient, and even fun!

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