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What Is My Car Worth? 


The enduring question "What is my car or truck or utility vehicle worth?"

At a time when the "consumer" is fully empowered with incredible amounts of information, the question still arises.

Whatever your vehicle, it has a value, and wether trading it in, or selling it yourself. You need to be in a position to know its value prior to selling your vehicle...yes SELL.

Points to consider.

Would you buy your own vehicle?

How interested would you be in buying your own vehicle? Very interested or not so much? How interested would an individual off the street be?

What does your vehicle need?

A good detailing...they all do. Tires, dings, scratches, tear in a bumper cover, a dent, the brake pedal is low are a few examples. Establish a reasonable list of what you would do to your vehicle if you bought it yourself. As for the cost, its easy to arrive at an estimate, being aware that labor rates are at least $100 per hour.


Has your vehicle been accidented? Its a good idea to generate your own Carproof report for your vehicle. Keep in mind that any accident appearing on a Carproof is a blemish on the "provenance" of your vehicle. Its an additional variable that must be declared and explained to a propective buyer.

Accident - Frame Damage?

All modern vehicles have "crush zones" to keep passengers safe, substantial dammage on any vehicle will make its way to the crush zones and frame damage. "It was a $10,000 repair but no frame dammage" is the common snippet.

Kilometers Travelled

The rule of thumb is 20,000 kilometers per year. Higher will decrease the value, lower will enhance the value. In some cases higher will make the vehicle unappealing, even with an adjusted price.


Technology has increased the level of competition, and choice. You have what is touted as a popular model by the automotive media, its only 3 years old. Be assured there are a ton of similar vehicles already in the market competing with yours.

Market Price

Competition generates "market pricing" which tends to be on the lower end of the scale to attract a prospective buyer. Especially for models with good availability in the market.


How long should it take to sell the vehicle? The sooner the better, less than 30 days.

What is the value?

Go to Canadian Black Book to have a wholesale/trade in value as well as a retail value. Do keep in mind that the Black Book has never purchased a vehicle. Vehicles are transacted in the rough and average columns. Go to Auto Trader for your area to have an idea of asking prices, which are not actual selling prices. can Google the year, make and model of your vehicle too.

Its complicated?

Its easy, requires minimum time. As an informed / empowered consumer, be aware that most dealers in 2016 use powerful, sophisticated software to access a myriad of "used vehicle data" to empower their decisions and selling process.

By inputting the VIN of your vehicle, the dealer will instantly know the average market price, the competition in the market, how the vehicle is selling, and numerous additional data points.

How does it work?

From the Black Book you find a trade in value of 15,000  and you conclude that the retail market price is 17,995. From Auto Trader you notice that the retail market price is closer to 17,495 and there are a good number of similar, popular models like yours in the market.

You know that your vehicle needs a brake job, tires are 60% worn, probably needs an oil change, the air filter is tired, as well as the cabin filter. If you would buy your own vehicle you would like to see new pads all around, perhaps even new discs, new tires, and an oil change. Agreed the vehicle will pass safety with hardly any material left on the pads, discs that pulsate, almost worn out tires.

Lets say that you would need to invest $1,500 in reconditioning.

Trade In / Wholesale Value (not always the same).......15,000.

Reconditioning .........................................................(1,500.)

Net Value Wholesale..................................................13,500.



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