Tip of the Week: Timing Your Trade-In

Vehicle Trade-In

So you are ready to get into a new vehicle and you have a trade-in. Chances are you’ve already thought about its condition and mileage, which play a big role in determining its value.  

But don’t understatement the importance of timing.

In order to get the most for your trade-in, you need to be strategic about when you trade it in and that means looking at the calendar.  

If you have a newer model car, one that’s five years old or less, a good rule of thumb is to trade it in before August. That’s the model-year change over when every car turns a year older, depreciates and loses value. So your trade-in could be worth a lot less in August than it does in July.  Sometimes it can seemingly drop in value overnight and you could lose hundreds or even thousands in trade equity if you wait until, say, the fall to buy. The used car market generally stabilizes once again by mid-September.

The situation is a bit different if you have an older model car, one five years old or more. In that case, the drop in value every August is minimal.

Click here for the best way to determine the real-world value of your trade-in.

Photo Credit: cherezoff/Shutterstock.com


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