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The Pros and Cons of Part-exchange

By: Scott McBride - Updated: 25 Feb 2011 | comments*Discuss
 
Used Car Part Exchange Price Dealer

Those looking to replace a used car will find part exchange one of the most hassle-free options available. There is no need to deal with private buyers, no money will be needed to advertise the car for sale and, if the deal goes through, you can climb straight out of the old car and into something new.

It is true that part exchange is unlikely to achieve the very best price for a used car. After all, the dealer will want to make as much money as he can from your car when he sells it on. The dealer has overheads to consider too, such as employing salesmen and paying for the upkeep of the car showroom.

To get the best possible part exchange deal, there are a few rules to follow. First of all, make sure all the paperwork is in order, including a current MoT certificate, registration document (V5C) and invoices for any repairs and work carried out on the car. If the car has been serviced regularly and in line with the manufacturer’s service schedule, it will be worth more, so be sure to have the car’s service history.

Fix Damage

Find any spare keys and include them in the part exchange. If it is a fairly new car or an expensive one, it may be worth paying to have any damage to the bodywork fixed. This is unlikely to be worthwhile with older cars, however, as the cost of repairs could be greater than any increase in part exchange value. Finally, wash the car inside and out. This will freshen it up and make it look well cared for and easier to sell on.

A part exchange is really two deals being done at once – as well as buying a new car, you are selling a used one. Keep this in mind when it comes to the negotiations. Some dealers will offer what seems to be a fantastic price for your used car, and then use this to stop you slicing anything off the price of the new car. Alternatively, a dealer may knock a good amount off the list price of a new car and then undervalue the trade-in.

Get Ready to Haggle

Remember it is the price difference between the new car and the used one that is important and do not be afraid to haggle. Do some research before going to the car showroom. Go online and find out how much cars similar to the one you are trading in are being sold for.

If the dealer cannot come up with a deal you are happy with, be prepared to walk away. A dealer will not like to see a potential buyer leave without committing to a new car, and sometimes the very best deals can be struck when you are on the brink of leaving the showroom.

It is possible to part exchange when buying a car online, but this is not so straightforward. It is, of course, difficult for a dealer to offer an accurate price for a car without being able to check its condition. It’s crucial, therefore, to describe the condition of the car very carefully when doing a part exchange deal online. Some online dealers may offer a trade-in price subject to an inspection when the car is delivered, but once the car has been delivered it is very difficult to argue against a price reduction.

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