How to get the best trade in price for your car

Looking at trading in your car? Found your dream car but it’s a little bit out of reach? Trading in your car is something we all experience but we are not going to lie, getting the best trade in deal for your car isn’t easy. If you don’t have an adequate plan in place or forget to address an issue with your car you could risk losing thousands of the trade in value.

Before you consider taking your car to get a trade in valuation you first need to ask yourself a few questions. What is the condition of the car? what year was the vehicle built in? How many kilometres are on the car? is there anything that need to be replaced? How you present your car to a dealer will make or break the trade in value.

Here are a few ways Australian Motorists can get the best trade in price for their car.


One of the biggest mistakes Australian Motorists make is not researching. What often happens to those who don’t research is they experience shock at the price they are offered from the dealership.

Before you start seeking trade in valuations it’s so important that you research the market. Understand how much similar cars are selling for, the condition of those cars and understand that the dealer will also need to make a margin. Once you have a fair idea of what you will be able to get, you will be in a better position to negotiate and get the best trade in price at the dealership.

Service and maintain your car

The condition of your is key to getting the best trade in price. The way that you have serviced and maintained the vehicle over the years will determine how much you will get. It is so important that you keep your car in good shape, ensure the car has been regularly serviced and most importantly road compliant.

It also helps to record your service and logbook history so you can present it to the dealer at trade in time. Many dealerships often refuse to accept vehicles that haven’t been regularly serviced and maintained. That brings us to our next point!

Have necessary paperwork

Before you go to the dealership have all the necessary paperwork on hand. The more information the dealer gets on your car the better the valuation price you will get. Be sure to show your service and registration history, any upgrades you may have done to the car, anything that has been replaced and any other key areas that need to be discussed.

Related article: What is PPSR in Australian and Why Is It So Important to You?

Clean your car

The way you present your car makes so much difference to the price. Yes, it may sound obvious, but many Australian motorists present their cars to dealers in horrible condition. Get rid of all the unnecessary things inside your car, vacuum the floors, use a car scent, and give it a wash. Doing the simple things makes such a huge difference to the valuation price.

Shop around

Like everything, it’s always best to shop around. The price one dealer gives you may differ from the next. Don’t just go with the first deal you are presented with; shopping around may get you a few extra thousand dollars. Let the dealers know what you have been offered and see how far they will go to acquire your car.

Be open with the dealer

Honesty is key, the last thing you want is for the dealer to find something wrong with the car that you haven’t told them, it could break the deal. Before you start to seek trade in prices it’s always best to get the car investigated by an independent mechanic. Understand the condition of the car, know if there is something that needs to repaired and be open and transparent with the dealer that you are presenting it to.

Timing is key

You need to pick the right time to present a car to a dealer for example it’s probably not the best time to present a car to a dealer right before Christmas, new year, or the end of the financial year. Many businesses often limit their spends during holiday periods or the end of financial year. Look at good times people spend money and make your decision accordingly.

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Final Word,

Trading in your car can be an exciting and daunting experience. To get the best price for your current car it is so important that you research, present the car in the best condition, shop around and pick the best time to present your car to the dealership.

We hope you enjoyed reading this article. To read more articles like this, please visit the Shop for Cars latest news page here.

About Shop for Cars,

Shop for Cars is Australia’s first car dealership-only online classified. Shop for Cars brings you the best quality new and used vehicles from trusted motor dealers Australia wide. Shop for Cars currently has over 12,500 cars listed for sale all from licensed Motor Vehicle Dealers ONLY.

Click here to begin your search.

DISCLAIMER: This is all based on opinion please research and consult with all relevant parties to get the best trade in price.