What’s My Car Really Worth?

What is My Car Really Worth?

by Dan Rosenberg, CEO of Cash for Cars™ and host of CBS Radio’s Car News w/Dan Rosenberg.

When selling your car there is one VERY important factor that you must consider before all others… the selling price. To determine this, you must first answer the following questions:
  1. How fast do I need to sell the car?
  2. How much time do I want to put into the sales process?
  3. How much work do I need to do on the car to get it ready for sale?
All three of these items are VERY important in determining the selling price. Here is a breakdown of each, and why it is important:

How Fast Do I Need To Sell The Car?

If you are looking to get rid of a vehicle yesterday, there are some great options. If you are in no hurry, there are others. Some cost money, while some are free. Some will get you more money and others, less. The fastest, easiest way to get rid of any car is to contact Cash for Cars™. We’ll get you a fast, free offer on that car with no hassles. If you are not in a hurry, you could post the car on sites like Craigslist (for free) or AutoTrader.com (for $25 to $359) or Cars.com (for $15 to $55.) Depending on the year, make and model of the vehicle, you may sell it quickly or it may take weeks, even months to sell it this way. Why? Because you are competing with professionals on all of those sites that are also selling cars much nicer, and sometimes less expensive than yours. With our site, CashForCars.com, you get an instant offer no matter the year, make, model, mileage or condition. Try listing a car that doesn’t run or has body damage on a paid site. You won’t get too many calls or emails on it.

How Much Time Do I Want To Put Into The Sales Process?

Are you a car salesman? Do you want to be? Most likely, the answer is no. If you want to get your car ready for sale, (see the next paragraph for more info on that,) market your car, demonstrate your car, take it on test drives, negotiate the final sale price of your car, handle payment collection and paperwork, then selling a car by yourself is worth every extra dollar you’ll get by doing it yourself. You have to determine what your time is worth. If it’s worth it, by all means, do it.

How Much Work Do I Have To Do To Get The Car Ready For Sale?

If your car needs a complete detail to make it “showroom ready” are you going to do it yourself or pay someone to do it? A good detail (and if you are trying to sell the car for the most money, you’ll need to do a great detail) can cost $100 – $300 depending on how dirty the car is. Are the seats torn anywhere? Are all 4 wheel covers there? Do all of the headlights and brake lights work? How are the tires? Have you done a tune-up or oil change lately? All of these items need to be addressed or no one is going to offer you anything close to what you are looking to get for your car. What about door dings, dents or scratched paint? A quick trip to Maaco can cost you $200 to get these items repaired. Once it’s all said and done, what is it going to cost to make this car look as good as it possibly can? $500? $1,000? $1,500? What if the car is only worth $1,000 totally fixed up? Will you invest money to get it ready for sale?
  Once you determine these things, go online and see what a vehicle in YOUR condition is worth. There are three sites that I recommend you check out first: Kelley Blue Book, NADAGuides.com and Edmunds.com. Enter in all of the required info on each site and get the value of your car as a private party sale. Once you get this number, deduct for all the work you’ll need to do. Also, deduct the cost of selling it. (Fees to list or advertise it and your time.) Finally, deduct $1,000 from that number. That is most likely what you’ll be able to sell it for as private party sale. Why $1,000? Because I want you to be realistic. The online numbers are ALWAYS inflated a bit. Why? I have no idea, but to get a realistic number, that $1,000 is a good thing to deduct. Also, check eBay, Autotrader, Craigslist and Cars.com to see if a car similar to yours is listed for sale. How is it priced compared to yours? Now you may have great success selling a car this way, or you can do what thousands of people do everyday: visit CashForCars.com and get an INSTANT offer. You do not have to do any work to your car, and most importantly, you don’t have to WAIT! If time is important to you, this is the best way to sell a car.  

In our next article, we’ll talk about “Why My Trade-in Is Never Worth What The Internet Said It Is.

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