“Out with the old, in with the new.” When the time comes to upgrade your vehicle, it’s always tough to know what to do with your older car. You can try trading in to a dealership, or you can try to sell it yourself. We’ll break down the pros and cons of each so you figure out which is the best option for you.

Trading In

Trading in your vehicle can be convenient for many reasons. Dealerships often have whole departments dedicated to helping you trade in your car easily and fairly quickly. The whole process can be finished in a couple of hours, or even less. The dealer will appraise your old car and compare it using an online database of similar cars in the area. The best part is getting money off of the new car by “recycling” (in a sense) your older one in.

The downside of trading in usually comes when the numbers come back to you. Many folks think that their cars are valued higher than what the dealership is offering. That’s true, but the dealer will need to turn around to sell that car for a profit. Therefore, they cannot offer you a full market value in order for the transaction to be a beneficial business move for them. While trade ins are often convenient, you almost always concede to a lower price.


The best part of selling on your own is the price increase in comparison with trading in. You are almost always guaranteed a fairer price when selling on your own to a third party. You have control over negotiations and pricing and how you market your vehicle for sale.

The worst part of selling on your own is the time it can take. You are not guaranteed an offer on your car at all. The longer it is on the market, the harder it can be to sell. And if you are depending on that money to put toward a different car, then you may be waiting longer than you were hoping. On top of the time it can take, it’s also more paperwork that you have to figure out to fill out as well as a bill of sale and legal documents to make things official. There is no help from a dealership office at that point.

There are trade offs with each strategy of liquidating your vehicle. Making sure you understand the pros and cons of both can help you make the right decision for your situation.

If trading in sounds like the right fit for you, feel free to value your’s here! We’d love to take it off your hands.

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