Updated: May 18, 2020
Regardless of whether you ultimately plan to sell your car to a private seller, a used car dealership, or trade it in, you need to be certain you’re getting what you deserve when it sells.
To help you get the most out of selling your car, here’s your Second-Hand Car Value Guide – 2020 Edition.
What Determines Car Value?
Cars generally lose most of their value in the first 36 months. After eight years, depreciation levels off. The make, model, condition, and odometer reading all affect your car’s value.
Some models diverge slightly due to unusual desirability (for example, the economical Honda Fit seems to hold up very well in the second-hand market, due to persistent demand).
Service History Counts
Your car’s value depends heavily on how well you’ve maintained it. Of course, this valuation factor requires documentation. If you’ve steadfastly maintained the vehicle and have receipts to prove it, this will bode favourably when it comes time for valuation.
Your car’s cleanliness also affects its value. If you have a mint condition gem, free from dents and dings, this too will up the value of the vehicle. Conversely, body damage, mechanical or electrical problems, and excess wear will lower your car’s value.
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Annual Rate of Depreciation
Vehicles depreciate on a yearly basis. The average car losses about 15% of its value each year, with a few notable exceptions. The Tesla Model S retains much of its value, thanks to its maker's over-the-air software updating which keeps the vehicle’s computer systems current. Every car, including Teslas, will see some depreciation. You will find a few depreciation calculators online, which can give you an idea of how much your car has depreciated over the course of ownership.
Value Estimation Websites
A multitude of websites can give you an estimate of your car’s value. It’s important to note that many such websites are inaccurate. Some of the trusted names in online car values are Glass’s Guide, RACQ, CAP, and Redbook. Keep in mind, though, that these sites only give you an idea of what your car is worth.
What you ultimately get paid for your second-hand car, comes down to what the buyer is will to pay for it.
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