Not Seeing What You're Looking For? Custom Order Your Honda Today!

Not Seeing What You're Looking For? Custom Order Your Honda Today!

My Garage

Trade-In Appraisal Tips

How to Improve your Vehicle's Trade-in Value:
If you're thinking about purchasing a new vehicle and need to sell your old one, trading it in to a dealership has several benefits. Not only do they assume liability of the vehicle, but the amount offered after the appraisal can go towards the purchase of your new vehicle. Regardless of uncontrollable aspects like the mileage or age of the vehicle, there are a few ways you can improve your vehicle's trade-in value.

Dress to Impress

Showing off your vehicle with dirt and grime doesn't project a good first impression or instill trust that you've taken good care of it. A simple wash will do wonders, whether it's done professionally or by yourself; take pride in what your vehicle looks like. Polish the body, tires, bumper and windows as well as cleaning often overlooked spots like door frames, wheel wells and trunk edges. Top it off with a wax job to reinstate that shiny exterior.


Revamp the Interior

Just like the outside, the inside of your vehicle should be presentable. Get rid of unwanted crumbs by vacuuming the floor mats and crevasses within the upholstery. Wipe away dust with a microfiber cloth and spray from the dashboard and steering wheel area. To get the inside completely clean, spending a little money to get it detailed may be worth your while to get rid of those tough stains.


Repair Minor Dents

Fixing minor damages before your trade-in appraisal may increase the value of your vehicle. Minor dents and dings can easily be restored by a paintless dent repair professional and scratches can be buffered out or repainted. If the damages are too large/much to fix, get a written estimate of the cost and use it towards your negotiations.


Fix Small Problems

It's best to fix small, affordable problems before an appraisal because it could translate into hundreds of dollars towards your trade-in value. Rather than getting the dealer to fix these problems before re-selling your vehicle, repair things like broken light bulbs, windshield cracks or chips, a broken key fob, etc. by setting a small budget. Any serious repairs should be noted for the dealer to take care of.


Check your Tires

Make sure your tires are in a reasonable condition. If your current tires have no tread remaining and look run-down, it's best to buy an inexpensive set. By doing so, this will not only help improve your vehicle's look, it will help towards your negotiation with the dealer. Be sure to check your tires for any "curb rash". This is when your wheel scrapes alongside the edge of the curb, leaving cosmetic damage or worse. Another easy task while checking your tires is to simply polish them. Get rid of dust and dirt buildup; the dealer will appreciate the upkeep.


Prepare your Service Records

Providing credible service records will show the dealer you've taken good care of your vehicle and followed the proper maintenance schedule. If you've serviced your vehicle at a dealership, your records should be stored in their database and can be easily printed out. Be sure to notify the dealer if your vehicle has any extended warranties during your appraisal; it may be transferable and add value.


There are many factors as to what or why a dealership offers you a particular amount during a trade-in appraisal but following these six simple steps will benefit everyone in the end. Not only will your vehicle's appearance and working condition enhance, it may also help you achieve a better deal. Set your vehicle integrity high by providing a new-like trade-in.