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When Is The Best Time Of Year To Trade In Your Car or Truck To Get The Most For It?

when should you trade in your car?

Perhaps one of the most important times in the life of your car is knowing “if it is the right time to trade in your car or truck.” Should I trade it within a specific number of years? Is there such a thing as too many miles? Does it have to be mint? It probably will not be a surprise to find out that there is not a simple answer to these concerns. But, we do have a few advice to help you decide when to trade in your car or truck.


Do I Want To Trade My Car?

This is typically the first question owners ask themselves. Most folks believe the best way to receive top dollar for their used car is to sell it themselves instead of trading it in. However, there are some points to think about when thinking about if you should trade your car or sell it.

Normally It Takes Longer Selling It Yourself

With few exceptions, selling a vehicle can take weeks, if not longer; especially if the vehicle needs repairs. The seller would have to arrange every single part of the sale process, from posting an advertisement to coordinating test drives, to arguing the price, and everything in between. On the other hand, trading in a vehicle almost always occurs the same day you get your new vehicle.

Paperwork Hassles

Usually the seller is accountable for providing the buyer with the necessary paperwork, such as the car’s title and registration. Trying to do everything by yourself may be a discouraging and long process if there are unexpected challenges assigned to the paperwork, like a lien. The dealership is equipped to do all of the paperwork, including challenges.

Missed Tax Benefits

Perhaps the most notable benefit to trading in your vehicle is the possible tax benefit offered in places with a state sales tax. For these states, there’s a financial credit applied to the new vehicle’s sales tax if you trade in a vehicle at the same place they purchase a new one. In short, the taxes are calculated at the price difference after the value of the trade-in is factored into the new car sale price. The savings can reach up to thousands of dollars.


When Trading In A Car, What Is The Best Mileage Range?

There are lots of opinions on this, especially with newer vehicles that are designed to last a long time. But, there is a nearly universal agreement of the following three mileage ranges to keep in mind when considering trading your vehicle in:

30,000 To 40,000 miles

This is the time when most new car warranties usually conclude. Conversely, this is when the first replacement or repairs of ‘wear’ components, like tires or brakes, are generally done on most vehicles. Your vehicle depreciation will begin to accelerate faster after this milestone, so the closer your car is to these miles, the more desirable your trade-in appraisal will usually be.

60,000 To 70,000 miles

Depending on usage, a vehicle that reaches this milestone will typically be between 3 to 5 years old and most likely has had many visits to the local automotive service bay for routine maintenance. Clearly as the miles add up, the value of the vehicle tends to decrease so vehicle owners should keep this in mind when weighing their trade-in options.

100,000 Miles Or More

Thanks to advancements in modern technology, this mileage is no longer the automotive death notice that it was in the past. But, the more mileage of your car, the greater the depreciation in all but the most exceptional kept vehicles. Anything within this mileage can still have value even if it isn’t in perfect condition. The cosmetic and mechanical condition of the vehicle is reviewed more closely as the miles pile up on the odometer.


Tips At Trade-In

Lastly, a meaningful component of trading in a vehicle is being prepared for the trade-in evaluation. The following suggestions are not the only ideas, to be sure, these steps will definitely help you get the most value out of your car.

Clean It Up

This ought to be a no-brainer, but people think that presenting the vehicle ‘as-is’ is a more honest approach to a trade-in appraisal. While we’re not advocating trying to hide blemishes or problems with the vehicle (Just so you know, the assessors will see through those attempts regardless), it is never a bad idea to clean up your car to the best of your ability before bringing it in for evaluation. This means getting rid of all debris and trash from inside the car (the trunk too), washing and vacuuming inside and outside, and perhaps even doing a nice detailing. Think of the appraiser as a potential buyer of the car and tidy up the vehicle accordingly.

Fix or Replace What You Can

We get that repairs can be overwhelming, especially for significant mechanical problems. Yet, if you can repair minor dings, chips in the paint, and cracks in the various windshield, mirrors, and windows, all of those repairs will go a long way towards improving the price of your trade-in. When possible, we advise repairing any mechanical concerns the vehicle may have as well. The better the condition, the more value you’ll get for your trade-in.

Be Prepared

If you’ve decided that trading in your vehicle is the best option for you, then we suggest coming here with all of your car’s documentation, including the title (if it’s in your possession), registration, any repair logs you have, and all copies of the car’s keys. Show up ready to trade-in your car and you will speed up the process of driving home in your new one.


Mazda online car buying Houston  TX


Where to Trade In my Car In Houston, TX

Team Gillman Mazda invites you to trade in your car or SUV in Houston, TX. No matter the day of the week, time of the month or year, we are happy to value your trade-in and get you into a new vehicle. Visit our dealership in person or give us a call to schedule an appointment.


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DealerRater Aug 11, 2020

To make a long story short, I researched the car I wanted and went to "my" dealership I have been going to for years. While I was on my way to the dealership, Ken called from Gillman. I told him was on my way to "My" dealership and was most likely going to come home with a new car. Well, the situation went left when I got in the finance office and of course I left. Nonetheless, I was sad the next day but I knew "my" dealership would call me back on Monday ...

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DealerRater Jul 2, 2020

After a few months of car shopping at numerous dealerships I quickly remembered why I don’t like buying a cars. This car purchase was for my mom and I went to many dealerships with her and we had a deals on cars to buy then in the final paperwork after 2 hours showed a cost 15-25% more because of dealer add on’s.. so frustrating. I was very skeptical sending my mom to the wolves with out being there and started talking to Hasan Majied at team Gillman Mazda about a Mazda CX-5 they had. I was crystal clear with ...

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I have purchased so many new and used vehicles and this is my first time to purchase at this facility. The minute I emailed them, early morning, I received a follow up and a confirmation that I would immediately be assisted. Not only did my rep greet me at the door, he made sure I was comfortable before starting. Kendrick listened to exactly what I wanted and he made it happen with ease. I was out within 1 hour and I have never met a more efficient team. I will see them in 2 years for my next vehicle. awesome team Mr ...

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