6 Ways To Retain, Even Increase Your Car’s Value
- Cars lose up to 20% of their original value in a year. That impacts your profit margin if you decide to sell your vehicle for a new one.
- You must commit to maintaining your car before a resale, as maintenance boosts a car’s value.
- Avoid unnecessary & flashy modifications as they will negatively impact your car’s resale value.
- Remember to appraise your car before you entertain any negotiations with private buyers or a local dealership.
- You can sell your car, trade in your car for a better one, or you can decide o keep it. The end decision is yours.
We often hear anecdotes of clueless car owners who end up convinced by private buyers to part with a LeBaron or a Dodge Aries at a paltry sum. And that is usually because they don’t know their car’s value or haven’t bothered to get their car appraised at a legitimate local dealership. Knowing your car’s value is the one thing that can make or break your car’s resale profits.
Your Car is a Time Investment
But your car doesn’t necessarily have to be some Avant grade collector’s item to rank high in resale prices. Suppose you are committed to maintaining your car’s value. In that case, you can recoup a healthy 10-15% even if your car is an older model.
You can recoup even more if you want to sell to a private buyer and know how much your car is worth!
Some Auto Value Boosting Tips
Protect The Paintjob
If you have a CDJR vintage and have managed to retain the car’s original paint job, then you are set for car resale. However, if there is a bit of discoloration, that can affect the value of your car.
It’s ideal for giving your car a regular wash and having it waxed at least twice a year for optimal surface protection. The area by the gas tank cap is the most affected by paint deterioration due to spilled gasoline’s thinning nature. A wax coat protects against all external corrosive elements and ensures a well-kept car for resale.
Rejuvenate The Trims
These trims are not to be confused with the car trim. These are rubber strips that go along the lengths of the bumper, fenders, scuttle, windows & doors. They are a gasket – a sealer – of sorts. With time, they get dry, crack, and lose their elasticity. Harsh car wash chemicals can also have that effect on trims. You can source protective trim sprays to rejuvenate & extend the life of this rubber.
If the trims are too damaged, you might have to replace them at a local dealership. That also adds to your car’s value.
Polish The Alloy Wheels
Dirty and pitted alloy wheels hidden behind last-minute wheel plates are akin to sales fraud if found out. You need a sponge, a hard bristle brush, and a bucket of spuds to wash the wheels regularly. It also reflects positively on your commitment to maintaining your car’s value.
Headlight Lenses & Covers
Excessive traveling across dusty stretches of rural roads, loose gravel, or insect swarms can erode the headlight & tail light plastic covers. That might lead to dim lights, or it could also indicate an issue with the battery. Regardless, if you can get your hands on a DIY headlight buffing kit, all is well. Otherwise, you would do well to take your car to a local dealership for a thorough buffing & polish.
Keep The Interiors Clean
A car’s interior can hold a history of drink spills, pet pee stains, vomit, or your offspring’s diaper accidents. You can’t remove these things with a wet cloth and a sanitizing spray because the scent will linger for years. And if you smoke tobacco, you better keep that out of the car unless you want the smell to permeate every inch of the vehicle & HVAC – and become irremovable!
Buyers can haggle for a lower price if your car smells even a bit off. So, if you want to maintain your car’s value, you better sign up for a regular dry & wet vacuum, change the upholstery if it is too grimy, change the cabin filters, and get protective covers for the seats & dashboard. Lastly, try to keep your interiors smelling like brand-new cars.
Iron Out The Dents
If you want to keep your car scratch free, you can use DIY hacks for minor scratch removal. Just remember to always use a microfiber towel on your car for any polishing & cleaning. Suppose some scratches have penetrated the paint layer and exposed the metal body. In that case, you should get your car to a local dealership’s auto body shop for repairs.
Any dents should also be entrusted to a body shop to fix using PDR. A dent-free car is valuable in a car resale.
The Benefits of Retaining Car Value
Don’t tell us you will keep that same gas guzzler for the next 30 years until it’s all rust. California will eradicate gas car sales by the next decade, and Georgia does not disagree with that. So, why not just put the extra mile in maintaining your car’s value and ensuring it sells out, and the profit goes into the down payment of your new electric car? Okay, if not electric, you can still invest in a fuel-efficient car that will pass Georgia’s emission inspections without embarrassment!
That all comes down to how well you have kept your car. Suppose you have retained the performance, aesthetics, OEM part’s health, and your car’s original finish. In that case, you are more likely to benefit from selling or trading in your car now!
What Kills the Markup on a Car?
If you are not maintaining your car’s value, then that will come as a shock to you during a vehicle appraisal. Outlandish auto mods, unnecessary rocket bunny kits on mainstream models, stereotypical decals, themed interiors & a flashy paint job won’t improve your chances for a last-minute appraisal boost. It will discourage any interested parties, even authorized local dealerships.
If you plan on selling your car in the future, these mods are safe to add:
- A GPS with mount systems.
- An infotainment system with Apple Carplay & Android Auto compatibility.
- A new set of tires that are suited to the climate & region.
- Installing power windows or motorized side-view windows.
- Clean car air filters, plus new windshield vipers.
- Air intake valve modification for engine performance & heightened mileage.
Note: Avoid installing engine performance modifications without consulting an auto mechanic and researching the mod’s effect on the appraisal.
Keep It, Sell It, Or Trade It In?
If you want to keep your car with you, we can’t convince you to part with it because that’s your joy.
If you want to sell it, trust a dealership, as it will compensate you fairly for maintaining your car’s value over the years. Only engage a private buyer if you are getting a higher profit or if you have a vintage that a dealership has appraised.
A local dealership is the best option if you want to trade in your car. You can put the car’s value as a down payment and secure financing for your next car. Who knows, it could be electric!