Buying a car is one of the biggest investments you’ll make so it’s sensible to try to protect your investment as much as you can. New cars suffer significant depreciation as soon as they leave the showroom and your aim should be to keep that depreciation to a minimum so the sale value is as high as it can be. The more you get for your old car, whether as an outright sale or part-exchange, the more you can afford to pay for the new one.
1. Buying the Right Car
Some cars hold their value better than others so studying the trends will help you make your choice. Also, avoid buying cars in fashionable or unusual colours that may not be popular for long and don’t make modifications that buyers may not want. Stick to the basics.
2. Keep it Clean
A car that looks good will get a better price than one that looks dirty and uncared for because it demonstrates you’ve looked after it. A weekly wash will get rid of the grime and regular waxing will protect the paintwork. Even better is a ceramic coating that will protect the paintwork against damage, help keep the dirt off and make it easier to clean.
Make sure you clean the lights, trim and wheels as well as the paintwork, using specialist cleaners for best effect, and don’t forget the interior which needs to be free of stains and bad odours. A regular clean will also identify any paintwork defects that need sorting before they corrode.
Putting your car under cover whenever possible will keep off tree sap and bird droppings that can be acidic and corrosive. Ceramic coating will also provide that extra layer of protection.
3. Maintain the Mechanics
All cars deteriorate with use and regular service is essential to detect problems before they become too serious. Services need to be carried out by reputable garages at prescribed intervals and manufacturer-approved components should always be used. Also, check fluid levels, tyre pressures and electrics frequently to ensure they’re in order, never ignore problems and always investigate and take the necessary action when warning lights come on.
4. Provide the Evidence
You’ll only get the best price for your car if you take the correct actions and can prove you have done so. You must, therefore, keep receipts and other documents together in a safe place so you can provide the full-service history when you come to dispose of the car. If buyers can see problems have been fixed and services carried out when due, they’re more likely to have the confidence to pay a good price for the vehicle.
Whether you’re part-exchanging your car or plan to sell it privately, you’ll achieve the best price if you do the basics that include keeping it looking good and working reliably. And there are ways you make this a lot easier, such as by applying ceramic car coating and using the best cleaning products.