Getting a higher resale value for your car

Well it’s time to sell the old car. What if anything can you do to help increase the resale value?


Here are a few tips that will help you get the maximum value for your car. Whether you’re trading it in at the car shop for a new one or simply selling it on your own.


Here are some tested things you can do that will help:

  1. Make sure the engine has fresh oil. A prospective buyer will most certainly look to see if the car has good oil at the proper level.
  2. Check all engine fluids, radiator, brakes, and transmission, make sure they are all at proper fill levels.
  3. If you can have small blemishes repaired. Take out small door dings. Fix curb rash on wheels if needed. Small cosmetic repairs can add hundreds of dollars to your resale. Prospective buyers will choose from similar cars the one with the least flaws.
  4. Have the car cleaned by a professional service. Shampoo carpets, clean the engine compartment, and have the service give your car a nice wax job. The more the car sparkles clean the more a prospective buyer will pay. Again, amongst like cars to yours, if yours stands out in the crowd people will pay more.
  5. Make sure the car is in proper working order. Any small repairs needed, get them done. The kiss of death in resale is engine lights on the dash illuminated. Find out what it is and fix it. You won’t be sorry its money well spent.
  6. If you have service records you can certainly provide those to a prospective buyer (be sure to black out your address and personal information before giving copies).

If you have smoked in the car. You may not be able to smell it but cigarettes leave a terrible odor for those that don’t. Professional appraisers deduct big for this. Most certainly have a professional service help you get this odor out of the car. It’s very difficult to do, so you want someone that has the proper tools and chemicals to help you. This is a big deal!


Don’t go overboard with too many repairs, but do take the time to get your car in peak condition. Car shops will typically give much more for a super clean car than one that they will have to spend time to refurbish. If you’re selling the car on your own. Prospective buyers will pay to have peace of mind. This comes in the form of a well-cared car.
A few simple safety suggestions when selling your car:

  • Delete all Navigation settings if your car has navigation.
  • Delete your garage door settings if equipped with Homelink®.
  • Make sure any receipts, repair bills, etc. are all out of the car. Don’t leave personal information behind in the car.
  • Check the CD player for CD’s.
  • Check under the seats and magazine compartments for personal items.
  • Clear the radio of any contacts, music, etc.

These are just a few simple hints that will bring a higher resale value for your car.