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What is the Best Way to Find out What Your Car is Worth?

Every car owner has their own reasons for wanting to know the value of their car. Maybe you’re planning to resell your vehicle and, of course, would like to get a good price from it. It’s also possible that you’re shopping for car insurance and would want to be able to enter the right value of your vehicle. No matter your reason, it’s best to have an idea of how to know how much your car is worth. 

Factors Affecting a Car’s Value

Mileage

Checking your car’s mileage is a good way to know the level of the vehicle’s wear and tear, both cosmetically and mechanically. Since every part of a car is expected to deteriorate eventually, the higher the mileage, the more issues the car would typically have. A low mileage will always add value to your car.

At around the 150,000-mile mark, it’s possible that some major components such as the braking system, gearbox, and engine are already experiencing problems. That’s why high-mileage vehicles are much cheaper compared to their low-mileage counterparts. 

Service History

The service history of your car is another factor in determining the vehicle’s worth. The record is perhaps the best way to know whether your car has been maintained well or not. 

While it’s true that cars would still be able to run even without being regularly serviced, if its fluid and filters are not changed or its parts are not checked for damage, then the car would be in a worse shape. This means repair bills could get really expensive. 

A used car should have a service book, which is a booklet where the service centre records the work done on the car. It’s ideal to get a car serviced every year so there ought to be a service stamp on the booklet for every year since the vehicle was made. 

MOT Status

MOTs are crucial since it lets you know whether your car is in good shape or not. Whenever an MOT is performed on the vehicle, there will be a record of the necessary work that should be done on the car. 

If there are any major work required, the car can’t be driven until the issues have been addressed. For minor work, the MOT centre would recommend that it be taken care of before the next MOT.

Did your car pass the MOT? If so, then there’s nothing to worry about since it shouldn’t need any major repairs. A vehicle without an MOT will make it difficult for you or a used car buyer to know whether repairs need to be done on the car before it can go back on the road safely. It's illegal to drive a car without an MOT.

Age of the Vehicle

The car’s age is among the biggest factors affecting its worth. The older the car is, the lesser its value. Of course, if you have a classic car, this rule doesn’t apply. For modern cars, however, age equates to higher mileage and more wear and tear on the different parts of the car. 

A 2010 model of a certain car would definitely have less value compared to a 2020 model. Also, the value of your vehicle might drop more whenever newer models are released. It’s because car buyers want the latest designs. The older ones are just not as attractive as the newest models. 

Modifications

You may have spent a fortune modifying your car to suit your tastes better. However, modifications actually reduce the car’s worth rather than increase it. This is because you can’t expect car buyers to share your taste. 

While it’s possible to find a car buyer who likes what you’ve done with the car, it might take some time to find one. Generally, modifications can reduce the number of car buyers who would be interested in buying your car. 

Condition of the Car

Cars in better shape can demand a higher price than one that’s had significant wear and tear. For used vehicles, a few scrapes and minor scuffs are expected but if the car has rips on the interior, damaged paintwork, dents, and other kinds of damage, then it can reduce its worth dramatically. 

Bear in mind that such damage can be costly to repair so it is expected that car buyers would haggle for a cheaper price considering they’d have to get some repair work done on the vehicle. 

Warranty

Warranties are important because they protect you from spending on repairs in case something goes wrong with your car. Used cars with a remaining warranty are typically worth more compared to a vehicle that doesn’t. 

Usually, the manufacturer’s warranty is valid for 3 years or up to 60,000 miles. Some warranties even last for 7 years or up to 150,000 miles. Each manufacturer has its own policy in transferring warranties to a new car owner. Be sure to check with the original car dealer so you’ll know for sure what the process is and where you and the new car owner stands. 

Takeaway

When finding out the value of a car, it’s not enough to know the make and model. There are many factors to consider because such factors may affect the car’s value – even the colour of the vehicle. So make sure that you take into account the condition, modification, specifications, warranty if any, mileage, MOT status, and service history. 

As a seller, you may want to get your car repaired first before selling so you can get a better price for it. As a buyer, it’s important to scrutinise every part of the car to make sure you’re getting the most out of what you’re paying for it. 🚘

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