September 7

What's My Car Worth? Estimating Your Car's Trade-in Value


Used cars on a lot.Calculating your car’s trade-in value can be a complex task, requiring several steps and multiple factors to consider. However, doing so before going to visit a dealership will save you a lot of money, confusion, or potential devaluation. These tips are useful whether you plan to sell privately or at a dealership.

The Used Car Market 

The used car market is simply the demand for used cars in a certain area. This is by far the most important factor to consider when estimating your car’s trade-in value. If the demand for used cars is down, the trade-in value of your car will be low. The supply and demand concept of economics also plays a big factor in this case.

Fair Market Value

The fair market value of the car is another point to consider. The fair market value is the amount of money that someone is willing to pay for the vehicle for the current condition that it’s in at the time of sale. Remember that as soon as you purchase a new car and start driving it, it begins to depreciate in value and is only worth what people are willing to pay for it now, not what you paid for it when it was purchased.

Age of the Car

After reviewing the market in your area, note the age of your car. The newer the car, the higher its value. Some attribute this price change to the upgraded features of newer cars. However, this isn’t always the case. Some older cars may have a higher value because they are sought after and no longer manufactured.


Mileage is the distance your car has traveled since it was manufactured. Cars with lower mileage are more valuable than those that have logged more miles. Check your car’s odometer to find out where your vehicle is at.

The Car’s Condition

When determining the condition of your car, consider the number of accidents it has been involved in (if any) and any damage that occurred on your car that may need repair.

Using Appraisal Tools

Once all of these aspects have been noted, you can use online car appraisal tools such as They have an amazing appraisal tool that can help you estimate your car’s trade-in value. Having a number in mind before going to trade in will help you make an informed decision.
Once you’re more familiar with the value of your vehicle and ready to complete the trade in, head to your nearest dealership and see what’s available. Alternatively, you can check online to see what they have in stock. Huffines Kia Corinth lets you search their stock of vehicles based on many factors; new, used, and certified; make, model, and year; as well as price.
Having an idea of what you want to trade your vehicle in for will make the deal go as smooth as possible and get you the best bang for your buck. After you’ve completed these steps, you’ll be as informed as you can be and ready for your trade.

Car Sales” via flickr by emilio labrador. Used with permission via CC BY 2.0 | cropped from original


You may also like