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When Should You Trade In Your Vehicle To Get The Most For It?

when is the best time to trade in your vehicle to get the most for it?

Maybe one of the biggest decisions in the life of your vehicle is understanding “when should I trade the vehicle in?” Is it best to trade it within a specific number of years? Is there such a thing as too many miles on the odometer? What if it isn’t in perfect condition? It probably won’t be a surprise to learn there is not a one-size-fits-all answer to these concerns. However, we’ve got some advice to help you understand what time is the best time to trade in your car, truck, or SUV.


Should I Trade In My Car?

This is typically the first question car owners wonder. Most of us think that the only way to get top dollar for their vehicle is to sell it on their own versus trading it in. However, there are some factors to look at when trying to decide if you should sell your vehicle beforehand instead of trade it in.

Typically It Takes Longer Selling It Yourself

Selling a car can take weeks or longer; specifically if the car needs repair work. You would have to arrange every single facet of the sale transaction, from creating an ad, to coordinating test drives, to haggling on price, and everything in between. Conversely, trading in a car almost always takes place at the time you get your new one.

The Hassles of Paperwork

Normally the person selling the vehicle is responsible for the paperwork, such as the car’s title and registration. If you are new to selling, this can often be a disheartening and long process if unexpected challenges are connected to the paperwork, like a lien. The dealership is capable of doing all of the paperwork, unexpected challenges included.

Lost Tax Savings

Maybe the biggest benefit to trading in your vehicle is the possible tax benefit in places with a state sales tax. For these states, there is a financial credit applied to your new car’s sales tax if you trade in a vehicle at the same place they buy a new car. In short, the taxes are applied to the price difference once the trade-in price is calculated into the new vehicle sale price. The savings can easily reach the high hundreds and even thousands of dollars.


What Is The Best Mileage To Trade In A Car or Truck?

There are plenty of thoughts on this, especially with late model vehicles that are designed to last a long time. However, there is a general agreement of these three mileage milestones to think about when trading in your vehicle:

30 – 40k miles

This is the time when nearly all new car warranties usually end. On the other hand, this is when the first major replacement of ‘wear-and-tear’ parts, like tires or brakes, are generally performed on cars. Your vehicle depreciation will start to grow faster at this point, so the nearer your vehicle is to this mileage range, the more desirable your trade-in value options will likely be.

60 – 70k miles

Depending on how much you drive, a vehicle that reaches this mileage will be 3 to 5 years old and most likely has been well maintained. Obviously as the miles pile up, the value of the vehicle gets lower so car owners should think about this when considering their trade-in options.

100,000 Miles Or More

It’s true that hitting this milestone is no longer the automotive death sentence that it was in the past, thanks to advancements in modern manufacturing. However, the more miles a vehicle has, the greater the depreciation in all but the rarest cases. Anything within this milestone can still have value even though it isn’t in pristine condition. The condition of the vehicle is looked at more closely as the miles grow on your odometer.


Tips For Trading In Your Car

Finally, a crucial piece of trading in the car is being prepared for the trade-in evaluation. While the following suggestions are not an exhaustive list, they will definitely help you get the best value out of your car.

Clean It Up

This ought to be a no-brainer, but people believe presenting their vehicle ‘as-is’ is an honest approach to a trade-in assessment. While we are not advocating trying to hide problems or blemishes with the vehicle (Just so you know, they will see through that anyway), it is always a good idea to clean up your vehicle to the best of your ability before bringing it in for the appraisal. This includes removing all debris and trash from inside your vehicle (the trunk too), washing and vacuuming the interior and exterior, and maybe even doing a nice exterior and interior detailing. Just think of the appraiser as a potential buyer and tidy up the vehicle.

Repair What You Can

We realize that auto repair bills can be overwhelming, especially for serious mechanical problems. However, if it’s possible to fix minor dings, chips in the paint, and cracks in the various windows, windshield, and mirrors, all of those cosmetic repairs will significantly help improve the price of your trade. If possible, we recommend repairing any mechanical problems the car may have. The better the condition, the better the trade-in value will be.

Have Your Bases Covered

If you’ve decided trading in your vehicle is the way you want to go, then we recommend coming here with all of your vehicle’s paperwork, which includes the title (if you have it), registration, any maintenance logs you have, and all copies of the vehicle’s keys. Come ready to trade your car in and you will not be delayed in driving away in your new car.


BMW online car buying Santa Fe  NM


Where to Trade In my Car In Santa Fe, NM

Considering trading in your luxury car or SUV for a new one? Santa Fe BMW provides the help you need to get the best value for your trade-in. Call us to schedule an appointment or visit our dealership to get started.


Santa Fe BMW 35.632199, -106.023286.