How to Increase Your Car’s Resale Value?

Updated Nov 23, 2018 | Same topic: Hot Tips for Car Selling

Follow us to know steps to take and get a good deal when selling your car.

A car’s value depreciates as quickly as the latest model of the iPhone series. A vehicle usually depreciates at 30% on the first 3 years of buying. From there, it depreciates even more at a rate of 50%.

It’s inevitable and there will also come a time when you would want to let it go. There’s always someone that’s bound to own your car at a lower price than when you first got it. That doesn’t mean that you have to just rely on your negotiating skills to get a good deal. There are plenty of steps you can take to increase your car’s resale value.

toy car going up in coins

If you would sell your car today, do you think it is really ready or worthy of your asking price?

1. Put Your Feet on the Buyer’s Shoes

Think like your potential buyer. Would a buyer be interested in hearing more from you if you started with saying that your car has dents and the air-conditioning sucks? Of course not.

The buyer will likely be more stressed about making the decision and find another deal. But, if you highlight the things that work about your cars such as new tires and perfect cooling system, the buyer will engage and you have better chances of closing the deal.

inspecting a car

Think like a buyer and ask yourself, "What do I want and expect in a secondhand car?"

2. Give Your Car TLC

TLC - tender loving care, that's it! By the time you brought your car, there’s got to be a short moment that you thought that someday you are going to sell it and move on with another car. That is why it is important to take extra good care of it so that when the time comes for selling it, you wouldn’t have such a hard time and you won’t overspend on detailing it.

Drive safely to avoid major or unfixable dents and damage, keep it clean and maintained.

3. Handy Tips on How to Increase Your Car’s Resale Value

There are several ways to get the most out of your car’s value come selling time:

3.1. Keep the Car in Good Shape

We’ve already discussed the importance of giving your car some love to keep it maintained not just for safety measures and appearance but also for getting a good deal when the time comes that you have to sell it. This maintenance starts at the time you bought your car so don’t put it off until you have to place it on the market. If you have a regular check-up and car maintenance from day one then you can spot issues early on and not have things spiraling out of control (and expense).

A potential buyer will most likely ask for a test drive before making a decision and he or she would use every issue seen on your car against your asking price. So to avoid losing the sale or getting a non-worthy deal, it is important to take steps to keep it in good shape such as always changing or cleaning the oil, replacing the coolant, and balancing tires.

good car garage

A good shelter for your car will keep it from falling debris and falling trees!

You can also prevent excessive wear and tear if you choose a good shelter or parking for your car. This way, it won’t be exposed to extreme weather, the harsh sunlight, acidic bird drops, and other elements.

3.2. Keep the Car’s Interior and Exterior Clean

Everyone loves the smell of a new car. There’s something so appealing about it. Just imagine selling your car without that smell, what would the buyer think? Your potential buyer might still be pleased if your car looks like it is on top shape with its cleanliness. 

Keeping your car clean is the easiest yet most impacting way to increase your car’s resale value. Buyers will judge by their vision first. Spend a little on getting new floor mats, deodorizers, and wash your car in and out. There are some smells that can linger in your car such as cigarette smoke so it would really help if you try to keep smoking at minimal or totally avoid it.

Spend some more on the best cleaning products for cleaning the windows and other parts of your car.

before and after car cleaning

Look matter. Appearance is a big factor when selling so make sure both the exterior and interior are clean

Lastly, your car’s paint might have “aged” just like human skin over the years. Having it professionally repainted is a pain in the wallet but there’s a cheap alternative that’s just as effective: waxing. There are good was products that will bring back the shine of your car close to its brand new condition. The best part is it is easy to do this yourself so that will also cut on the labor costs.

3.3. Be Aware of Your Mileage

The mileage of a car is a big factor in its depreciation. So, if you think of going far places for your vacation, you might want to reconsider your transportation options. The average mileage that is still acceptable for most buyers of second-hand cars is around 100,000 miles. If you drive more than this, you might not get a good deal and lose a significant amount of value.

Another habit that uses up your mileage is driving fast and aggressively. If you mindy your driving habits and mileage early, you will save up on a lot of mileage and keep your car’s value at a worthy price.

unknown mileage

Mileage is important. Even if your car is in top shape, if the mileage is high then you might also lose the deal

3.4. Keep the Important Documents and Keep them Organized

You can show off a clean and well-maintained car but buyers would need a solid proof that you actually take care of it regularly. To avoid any awkward moments when a buyer is questioning some things regarding your car’s value, every paperwork from every little thing done to your car must be easily reachable.

Let the papers speak for themselves. Having them organized show how much you love and take good care of your car and the buyer will really appreciate that. Record keeping will go a long way to show your buyer how you took care of the car. 

organizing important documents

From legal documents to routine maintenance, everything must be presented

4. Recap

You need to plan ahead to have yourself prepared for the time that your beloved car needs to be with a new owner and you get yourself a new one. From the day you bought it, drive it with care and kind of show respect to it. It gets you and your family to where you need to be. It will get you home safely. You can use it for business and many other purposes and will still give you a good deal up to the time you will have to sell it.

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Hanna Sanchez

Hanna Sanchez


Hanna is one of the most competitive swimmers in the country during her day. It was not long before she discovered her passion for the automotive industry as well. Nowadays, she balances her passion through writing as well as coaching.

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