Sell or Trade Your Car in Cape Girardeau, MO


When drivers need to buy a new car, they often have to find a way to rid themselves of their current one. There are several methods for offloading an old car, such as selling it to a private buyer or trading it in at a dealership. Although each option has its advantages and disadvantages, exchanging your old car for a new one by trading it in at the dealership is one of the most convenient options.

While selling your car to a private party can sometimes bring in more profit, it also comes with its own set of inconveniences. You have to advertise, negotiate with potential buyers, schedule meetups, and fill out lengthy paperwork. On the other hand, trading in your old car for a new one at the dealership saves time and energy. Plus, you can use the trade-in value to make a down payment on your new car. At John Sinclair Nissan, we want to help you maximize your trade-in value by providing the following useful advice to get the most for your trade-in.

Find Your Trade-In Value

Your car’s trade-in value is determined by several factors, including its make and model and overall condition and mileage. The first step in ensuring you get a fair trade-in price is to research ahead of time so you know what your car is worth. There are several online services you can use to help you determine your car’s trade-in value, such as our tool to value your trade that utilizes information from Accu-Trade.

When using an online tool like the one on our site, it’s essential to make sure all your information is accurate. Refrain from guessing at the mileage, and be realistic when assessing your vehicle’s condition. You want your assessment results to be an accurate reflection of what the dealer will present to you. It’s also a good idea to find the value of your car from more than just one source, so you might want to consider using the Edmunds appraisal tool as well.

When it’s time to make things final and get money for your trade-in vehicle, bring your research to the bargaining table. Let the dealer know that you’re aware of how much your car is worth. The more knowledge you have in your back pocket, the better. Be sure to negotiate the trade-in deal separately from your new vehicle purchase as well. It’s easy for the dealership to lump all the figures together, making it difficult to see exactly what you’re getting for your car, so negotiating separately can help ensure you’re getting a fair deal.

Get More Than One Offer

You can get a trade-in value from a dealership before purchasing your new car. In fact, it’s smart to shop your car around at multiple dealerships to get several quotes for your car’s trade-in value. Be sure to get the quotes in writing so you can bring them to the bargaining table when you make your new purchase.

You’ll likely find that different dealerships will offer varying amounts for your car. That’s good because it’ll allow you to decide where to shop for your new vehicle based on who offers the most for your old one, or it will help to negotiate your trade-in price at the dealership of your choice.

Stay Up to Date on Maintenance

A properly maintained car lasts longer, effectively enhancing its resale price and increasing its value as a trade-in. Make sure you’re keeping your vehicle up to date on essential maintenance before trading it in. After all, when the dealership looks at your car, you don’t want them to hear any rattling noises from not getting your oil changed or see dirty air filters when they look under the hood. These things make it seem like your car could be in better condition, affecting the trade-in value.

It also helps to bring your maintenance records with you when you trade in your car. By providing this information, you’re helping to prove that your vehicle was effectively cared for. A well-maintained car holds a higher value than one that has suffered from years of neglect.

Make Your Car Look Presentable

When assessing a car’s trade-in value, a quick once-over will reveal any apparent scrapes and scratches on the outside of your vehicle and the overall condition of the interior. One thing that will improve your car’s value is to give it a thorough cleaning. It may pay in the long run to have your car professionally detailed before bringing it in to be assessed. Detailers will get your car looking almost as good as new, making your car more valuable at trade-in time.

Similarly, paying upfront for repair costs for minor scrapes and chips in the paint might make sense. Minor repairs that improve the aesthetic of your car, including a new windshield if it has any cracks, could significantly improve your trade-in value. Feel free to put a little money into your vehicle before bringing it in. While it may seem counterintuitive to put money into a car you’re about to get rid of, it can pay off when it comes time to value your car.

Our service center will happily help you with any of your car’s maintenance or repair needs. Give us a call or stop by to discuss what work you’d like to have done and get a quote. Making your car look presentable will be like putting your best foot forward when it comes time to value your trade-in.

Shop John Sinclair Nissan Today

We know that buyers in the Cape Girardeau area are savvy shoppers who are looking for the best deals out there. At John Sinclair Nissan, our sales team is here to help you find the car of your dreams at a price that suits your budget. Getting a fair value for your trade-in goes a long way toward helping to get you behind the wheel of a new car. If you have any questions about trading in your vehicle, don’t hesitate to reach out and contact us at your convenience.


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