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Car Valuations: What You Need To Know

This page will help you sell or buy a car at the best price, because the key to getting the best price is to know accurately what's your car worth.

Many people think there is a mystery when valuing a car? In fact it is comparable to a house. A house in a particular area with three bedrooms will have a value of £X00,000 according to an estate agent. But you know that it is also the quality of the finish, kitchen and bathrooms that will affect the price when someone comes to view it. A car is very similar to this in many aspects. The make, model, age and mileage are the key factors. However, general condition of the car, its optional extras, like sunroof, stereo and even paint colour also play a big part in its value.

Use an Online Valuation Company

We recommend you use an online valuation service. Most are free, some you pay for (but they are not expensive and often simpler to use).

When you are talking, for example, to the garage who are looking to buy your car, show them you have done your research and know what you are talking about.

Check your vehicle history

If you are looking to buy a second hand car then you should always consider car history check. It's a quick and easy way to ensure the car you are buying is not already an insurance write off.

Private Sales – You will get more money for your car by selling it privately.

Selling to a Dealer – Dealers will always pretend to you that your vehicle has a value according to the book price. In reality a low mileage car with lots of optional extras will sell much more easily. However they will still try to give you the cheapest price. If you are going to sell to a dealer then make sure you visit a couple to get different offers.

Trade In – A main dealer who is predominately interested in selling new or nearly new cars will be reluctant for you to trade in your car. They all offer the service but the price they offer you for your car will be the lowest because it is more a hassle for them. Most often they just sell them onto a specialist second hand car dealer.

Best Advice

Our best advice is work out the true value of your car. Sell your car privately. Then when you go to buy your new car negotiate heavy with the dealer for a cash discount.

A few of our favourite car valuation websites:

Free Sites

– Motoring.co.uk – AA Car Valuation – free to AA members – AutoCheck.com

Paid Valuation services

(expect to pay about £3 - £4)

– Parkers Guide Valuations – Glasses – Autotrader

You may also want to read about: Cars For Cash

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