Car Values: Supplement Your Income

The COVID-19 pandemic has created an unexpected sellers market pertaining to used cars. It is unexpected because during a major crisis, people generally spend less. Prices of new cars have gone up like so many things during the pandemic, however, making used cars (and their lower prices) more desirable. This means used cars are sold for more money than under normal circumstances but still at significantly lower price points than new cars.

Selling your car to supplement your income during a crisis may feel disappointing and frustrating. It might also be frightening, especially if you have been careful to save and prepare for hardships but are still against a proverbial financial wall. Because car values have gone up, however, you might be able to sell your car, supplement your immediate income and still have money from the sale to re-invest in a replacement vehicle when the time comes. Learn more about current car values, how to supplement your income by selling your used car and get the best possible offer/price for it, below.


Safe Selling Practices During a Pandemic


Selling your car during a pandemic requires additional steps and preparation. Not only do you want potential buyers to know you are concerned about their safety, you also want to protect yourself and family from health risks. When selling privately via such online websites such as Craigslist or eBay Motors, it is important to make a statement in your listing showing you are aware of the safety concerns involved in personal interactions with prospective buyers.


Clean and sanitize your car and let buyers know you have done so. Request all prospective buyers wear masks (and even gloves) when coming to view your car in person and let them know you will do the same. State that you adhere to all logical social distancing protocols and even offer to sit in the back if buyers need to test-drive the car. While these are unprecedented statements and steps pursuant to listing a used car, handing them properly might help sell your car faster and at a higher price.


How Car Values Have Increased in 2020


New car prices have gone up in 2020 not only due to a reduction in sales but also due to lack of production and availability. Many manufacturers have had to deal with anything from safety protocols causing limitations in production to having to lay off employees due to a struggling economy. These unfortunate events have led to contrasting boons for sellers of used cars.


Experts at presented data revealing the average listing price increased by $708 from June 2020 to July. Trade-in value for used cars also increased 16.4 percent during that same short period. Used car dealers are simply open to paying more to sellers in an effort to keep their lots full and meet the increased market demands for used cars.


How to Get the Best Offer for Your Used Car


Some logistical and marketing aspects of selling your car remain the same, regardless of the situation. Knowing the current value of your car helps you set a price attractive to private buyers and profitable to you. Consulting a tried-and-true source such as the Kelley Blue Book is one trusted way of establishing a reasonable asking price for your car. Knowing this information also helps you get the best price when selling to or through third-party companies such as TrueCar, Autotrader and Carvana.


It is also crucial to make sure your car is in the best shape possible, both visually and mechanically, before creating a listing. Cars having the cleanest presentation and fewest amount of mechanical issues command higher selling prices. Clean and detail your car prior to selling it. Show as many high-quality pictures as possible in your listing. Take the car for a checkup and fix every issue you can fix. Keep all papers and records of repairs done to your car - and when they were completed. The more you show you cared about – and took care of  - your vehicle, the more likely it will command a higher selling price on the used market.

How to Supplement Your Income and Save for the Future


The sellers’ market currently blossoming in 2020 for used car owners creates potential multiple advantages. Under most normal circumstances cars depreciate in value from the moment they leave the sales or dealer lot. While used car values are on the rise it is wise to take advantage of several opportunities having a likely limited shelf life.


The first benefit pursuant to selling your vehicle is having the ability to supplement your income in a time of crisis when you need it the most. The second has to do with the many new selling tools and options available to you. Out of necessity new ways of selling vehicles had to be developed. This is to your advantage as a seller because it allows you to literally play the market and compare offers until you find the highest one.


The third advantage is perhaps less obvious than the first two, but no less important. Selling your car may not be a preferable choice and in fact could be an emotional one. If you think from a budget-oriented perspective, however, you mitigate your reservations and even become more optimistic. Consider trade-in values have risen by 16.4 percent in just one month’s time. If possible, divide your final selling price by putting 16.4% of it into an interest-bearing savings or investment account to be used toward the purchase of a replacement vehicle in the future when financial security returns and car prices change back to reflect a buyers’ market.