Why is a Vehicle’s Trade-In Value Lower Than Retail Value?

2019 Chevrolet Cruze

When trading in your car at a dealership around Sarasota, you’ll notice a difference between trade-in value vs. market value. Take a moment to learn why your trade-in offer is going to be a little lower than the retail value of your car. Then, value your trade and contact Cox Chevrolet to schedule an official appraisal in Bradenton! 

Trade-In Value vs. Market Value Explained

Why is a vehicle’s trade-in value lower than its retail value? When trading in your car at a dealership in Tampa, you’re essentially paying the dealership to act as a middleman between you and the future buyer of the vehicle. You pay the dealership by selling them your car at around 15% of the retail value. While you may be inspired by this fact to sell the car privately, it’s often quite affordable to work through a dealership. Why do you ask?

When you sell a vehicle privately, you’ll need to pay for a tune-up and have the car detailed. You’ll also need to hire a third party to thoroughly inspect the car to verify that it’s in the condition and the amenities you’re advertising. Otherwise, you could end up in court. What’s more, you’ll need to make time to advertise the vehicle, meet with potential buyers, transfer the title, and more. This time-consuming process can also cost you as much or more than whatever value is lost by trading your car to a dealership. 

Trade-In Value Factors 

Wondering what factors are considered when calculating the trade-in value of your Palmetto vehicle? The main consideration includes: 

  • Condition: This indicates the cosmetic and mechanical quality of the vehicle. 
  • Mileage: This is factored in both in terms of how many total miles you’ve put on the odometer, and the average number of miles the vehicle has been driven since it was manufactured.  
  • Title Status: Cars with salvage or branded titles can usually only be sold for their parts. If you have a salvage title vehicle, try selling it at a branded title car dealership that’s equipped to rebuild it.
  • Vehicle History: Has your car been in an accident or damaged in a flood? If so, it’s experienced greater depreciation. Other historical factors can include maintenance history. If you’ve stuck to your recommended maintenance schedule, your car will be worth much more! 
  • Demand: If the car is more popular, demand will be higher, and it will have a higher value. 

Appraise Your Car in Bradenton at Cox Chevrolet

You’ve read about why a vehicle’s trade-in value is lower than its retail value. Now, call Cox Chevrolet at (941) 251-0310 to get an official appraisal and received a competitive offer for your vehicle. If you’re trading for credit, be sure to explore our inventory and streamline the process by applying for financing in advance! 


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