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Do All Dealers Accept Trade-ins?

The vast majority of dealers will accept trade-ins. The only exception that we can think of is the occasional buy-here-pay-here dealership. You need to be aware that you are not going to get as much as you want when you trade your car in. Even so, there are things that you can do to increase the amount a dealer may be willing to offer you for your trade.

How To Get More For Your Trade

Improving the trade-in value of your car is very similar to boosting your car’s curb appeal when you were trying to sell it privately. The first thing to do is to clean it up. Take all of your junk out, vacuum the carpets, wash the dash, even wax the exterior. There is no reason to make any repairs, but just cleaning a car up makes it look worth more.

The next is to track down any recent repair bills you have. This may not help a lot, but every dollar you get is one less you have to borrow. After going through the first two steps, walk around the car and honestly assess it. How many miles does it have…is rusty…are the tires junk…etc.

After honestly assessing your car, jump online. Hit up sites like and to see what your car is worth. Not the average retail value, look at the trade-in value. This will give you a baseline number to keep in mind while negotiating with a salesperson. You may not get that figure, but you will at least have a frame of reference.

Sell Privately

In many instances, you will get more money by selling your car yourself. You will want to go through the same steps listed above, except look at the average retail value. After doing that look for as many outlets as possible to advertize your car for sale. Craigslist, Facebook, and local newspapers are great places to advertize a car for sale. Be careful, only meet potential buyers in a public place where you feel safe at all times.

Selling your car privately can be a long and annoying process, so many people elect to trade-in their old vehicle. Luckily, nearly every dealer accepts trade-ins. As long as you go to the dealership armed with the average value of your car, you should leave with a new one, satisfied that you made the best deal possible.

About the Author

The author has many years of experience in automotive finance and insurance. However, each consumer's situation is unique. It is best to contact a finance specialist for further assistance.
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