Whether you’re buying or selling a vehicle, there needs to be some basis for the price. How is that value determined? One of the more common ways to arrive at car value estimates is to take the vehicle to an appraiser. Here are a few of the factors that the professional will take into consideration before providing an answer.
The Age of The Vehicle
How old is the car or truck? This will be one of the first points that the appraiser will take into consideration. In general, vehicles that are older but have not attained the status of classic or vintage vehicles are likely to be worth less money in the marketplace. At the same time, a vehicle that is considered classic or vintage may be worth more than you think.
The appraiser is well-versed in all sorts of make and models. That makes it easier to determine which category applies to your vehicle. Once that’s established, the professional will move on to consider other key aspects.
Mileage and General Condition
The number of miles on the engine will have some impact. If the mileage is considered average for a car of that age, then it will not make much difference. When you have a vehicle with considerably less mileage than average, that could be grounds for placing a higher value on the car or truck.
The car’s general condition is also important. That includes the inside as well as the engine, transmission, body, and exhaust system. When everything is in order, the upholstery isn’t ripped or unusually worn, and the paint job is in good shape, the value is likely to be higher.
The Auto History
Without a doubt, auto histories have a serious impact on car value estimates. The history doesn’t have to be pristine. It’s possible to be in some accident that caused no more than minor damage, and still have the car retain most of the value. It’s only when there are signs that some serious damage occurred that the value is adversely affected.
Even without referring to a car history, many appraisers can tell when a fender has been replaced, or some other major work was done. While the signs may be hard for others to detect, they aren’t likely to go unnoticed by a professional.
Where You Live
You may not think that it makes any difference, but where you live can have some effect on how much your car will be worth. This takes into more than the economy in the area. Factors like the current market for similar makes and models will be considered. There’s also the chance that the value will be influenced by factors like the crime rate, the number of accidents that have occurred in the area, and other considerations.
The appraiser can explain this aspect to you, and make it easier to understand how the final figure is determined. Keep in mind that you want to provide information on where the car is stored most of the time. If it happens to be in a different part of town from where you live, make that clear.
Once you have the estimate in hand, it can be used in all sorts of ways. From buying or selling to determining what amount of insurance is needed, that estimate will go a long way toward helping you make sound financial decisions.