So - you’ve chosen a shiny new car to buy… What are you going to do about the old set of wheels sat in your driveway? For many people, the answer to this is “I’ll part exchange my car” - but is this a good way to sell your old vehicle?
At face value, it has the benefit of killing two birds with one stone: you offload your current vehicle in part payment to the dealer, meaning the actual cash payment for your new car is much lower.
But you should be aware: if the dealer you part exchange your car with intends to sell it on to a new customer, then you are likely to be able to negotiate a good price for your old car. However, if the dealer you part-exchange with does not intend to retail your car then you will probably not get a good price, as they will need to either put that car into auction or find another dealer to sell it to - and will want to make sure they are not out of pocket doing so.
What is the part exchange value of my car?
The answer to this is tricky. In reality, a dealer will be looking at the total transaction - ie the price charged for your new car and the price given for your old one. It can therefore often seem like you’re getting a great deal on one, without you realising you’re getting a terrible deal on the other.
Part exchange prices offered vary enormously depending on the dealer and on what car you’re trying to part-ex. Some dealers love to take cars in part exchange as they can make quick money on them. Other dealers would rather not be ‘landed’ with a car they don’t really want on their forecourt - and therefore the part exchange car value they’ll offer is low.
How to part exchange a car
Here are a few tips to help you get the best value for a part exchange:
- Negotiate the price of your new car without mentioning the part-ex. That way, you’ll know the best price you can get on this side of the deal.
- Know the trade value of your old car. It’s difficult to get a part exchange valuation, as such. But tootle's free car valuation tool will provide a range of prices that dealers would buy your car for based on its condition.
- Once you have an idea of the best prices you can buy / sell your cars for, then negotiate with the dealer of your new car on the part-exchange price. Focus on trying to make the difference of sale between the cars as small as possible - but don’t be afraid to walk away from the part exchange side of the deal if you feel it’s not good enough.
Part exchange alternatives
Part exchanging a car is a common route taken by sellers - but it probably won’t get you the best price. You’re likely to get better value for your car by trading it in directly with a dealer that’s actively sourcing vehicles like yours. And you’ll definitely get more for it by selling your car privately - though this does come with hassles such as advertising costs, handling enquiries and managing the transaction.
Whichever route you take, research shows that you’re likely to get a better overall deal by selling your old car first and negotiating on your new car as a cash buyer.
We can help get you the best possible trade price on your car by selling it through our network of dealers. We know we’ll have multiple dealers who are actively looking for cars like yours - creating competition that will get you the best deal. And as an added bonus - most dealers will collect your car straight from your home!
Find out more about how we can get you a great deal on your car!
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