You have completed steps 1 and 2 of your purchase process, you have decided on the vehicle you want, you have test driven the vehicle and you have made your decision that this is the car for you.

However, you have a trade-in.  You have loved and looked after your car for years (or not).  You have looked on the internet at what the same cars – year model, mileage, etc, are selling for and you have a Rand value in your mind that you expect to get offered for your car. Sometimes the Dealer offers you what you expect – but more often than not – they don’t.

You need to know that there are many aspects a Used Car Manager looks at when determining the offer he or she makes for your vehicle – here are just a few listed below:

  1. A rental or Fleet Company has just renewed their fleet and there are a gazillion cars exactly like yours flooding the market – this reduces your trade-in value as these vehicles are available to the Dealer network at greatly reduced prices.
  2. The specific model/specification/colour of your vehicle is not a big seller.  Every vehicle the Used Car Manager has on his or her floor costs the Dealership money on a daily basis, the longer the vehicle stands on the floor before being re-sold the more it costs the Dealership.  This cost cannot be added to the purchase price of your car so inevitably the longer your vehicle takes to get sold the more negative the financial implications for the Dealership.
  3. Does your vehicle have a full-service history with a Dealership, or was it serviced up until the end of the plan with a Dealer and privately after that – or not at all? Has the service book been stamped?
  4. Was your vehicle involved in an accident?
  5. Was your vehicle resprayed for any reason?
  6. When last were the tires replaced?
  7. What does the Dealer have to spend on your vehicle to get it back into shiny sparkly showroom condition to sell to the next client?
  8. Is your vehicle over a certain age and mileage resulting in the Dealer having to sell it to the trade?

The list goes on and on and in the years I have been in the industry I have seen many hearts break at this point – especially when we pick up respray on a vehicle meaning that there has been some accident damage our client was not aware of prior to purchasing it as a pre-owned vehicle.

Each Dealership will offer you a different amount based on what sells in their area and also what Policies and Procedures need to be taken into account at that specific Dealership.  So sometimes it pays to shop around – however, if you do want to shop around for pricing on your trade-in make sure the Dealers have seen your car before confirming their offer as there is a big difference between a ‘subject to view’ offer and an offer made on actual evaluation.

That’s all for today, see you next time when we discuss the next step – The Trade In Part 2.

Remember to stay awesome. Yours in motoring – Patty