Dealer's Journal Car Buying Best Time to Trade In Your Car

Best Time to Trade In Your Car

Best Time to Trade In Your Car

It’s no secret that many dealerships are looking to bolster their inventory of used cars for sale. If you’re planning to sell your car, one of the easiest ways to do it is to trade it in at a dealership. The question is, when should you do that? Are there better times than others to trade in your car? Let’s take a look.

When Should You Trade In Your Car?

Is it a good idea to trade in your car if you’ve had it for two to three years? This strategy might get you more money than if you waited beyond three years due to the fact that your new car warranty is probably still active. However, it ultimately depends on your car’s depreciation after two years and your financial situation.

The best mileage to trade in your car is around 40,000 or below. You’re more likely to get a favorable appraisal with fewer miles and more warranty left. Most vehicles come with a warranty that lasts three years or 36,000 miles and a powertrain warranty that lasts five years or 60,000 miles.

Another time to consider trading in your car is before major service intervals. If you’ve kept up with the maintenance on your car and another important service interval is coming up, it might make sense to trade it in while it’s still in good health.

Best Time of Year To Trade In Your Car

There are generally more shoppers looking at used cars for sale at the beginning of the year rather than at the end of the year. Dealerships are often eagerly searching for more used car inventory at this time. Another factor to consider is that the new model years tend to come out in the latter half of the year, which makes your car another year older.

Sometimes the best time of year to trade in your car depends on what kind of car it is. For example, if you have a convertible sports car, it’s better to trade it in between spring and summer as demand for that type of car increases. Similarly, an AWD SUV or 4WD truck will look more appealing to buyers in the fall and winter when the weather gets bad.

The Best Time To Sell Is Before You Need To

Ultimately, the best time to sell your car or trade it in is before you need to. If you feel pressure to unload your car, you probably won’t negotiate the best deal. If you need to replace your car, it’s important that you sell your old car when you have the financial strength to buy a new one.

Believe it or not, the weather can be a factor too. Not too many people are shopping for used cars for sale when it’s blazing hot or freezing cold. Holidays and three-day weekends may not be as good as commonly thought either. Most people are focused on vacations and activities, not looking for cars. Dealerships also tend to get inundated with trade-ins during this time, which lowers the values for everyone.

Even though there are definitely situations and times of year that are better to sell a car, the bottom line is that you should always consider selling before you desperately need to.




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