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Trade-in value explained

When trading in your car for a new one, it’s helpful to know its trade-in value. In this guide we’ll explain what trade-in value is and how it works in a car exchange transaction.

At Money4YourMotors, we don’t offer a trade-in service, but we might be able to pay you more than you’d get from trading-in, as providers are unlikely to give you the current market value. Get an instant valuation on our site today, and if you decide to sell to us, you can use the payment to shop for your next car. Better yet, we’ll also take the old vehicle away from your home or workplace.


What is trade-in value?

If you are selling your car and want to buy a new car in the same transaction, your old vehicle will be given a trade-in value. This is the amount that the buying service or dealership is willing to assign towards the purchase of the new car.

For example, if you are buying a car for £50,000 and your old car has a trade-in value of £25,000, this amount can be deducted from the new car price.

Is part exchanging the same as trading-in?

It is! Trading-in your car can also be called a part exchange, so both phrases are used interchangeably.

What affects car trade-in value?

Each dealership will look at different factors when determining a car’s trade-in value, including:

• Mileage
• Condition
• MOT service history
• Age
• Modifications
• Current market i.e., whether your car is a rare or common model

Not every buyer will examine your car in the same way, but understanding key considerations for trade-in value is useful when approaching a dealership.

How does trading-in a car work?

The dealership will assess your old car and give you a final trade-in value. If you agree with this offer, you will then pay the outstanding amount for your new car in the part exchange. You might also discuss finance agreements to pay off your new car.

After the trade-in has concluded, ownership of your old car is handled by the dealership, so it can be considered a fuss-free option to sell and buy simultaneously. Alternatively, Money4YourMotors will also buy your car with minimum fuss, and you’ll be free to shop around for your next motor, with a down payment ready and waiting in your bank account.

What documents do I need when trading-in my car?

You’ll often need the following to trade-in your car with a buyer:
• V5C logbook
• MOT certificate
• Car keys
• Manual

Can I trade-in a car on finance?

This will depend on the buyer you sell to. Some will indeed buy your financed car as a part exchange and sort out the remaining balance, while others might not.

If the car you’re selling is on finance, consider checking with the dealership before choosing to part exchange with them.

Getting the best deal

You obviously want to make sure you’re getting the best deal in your part exchange. When selling to a buyer, ask them for a price for your old car first before discussing a trade-in, as this will give you more breathing room to negotiate a price that suits you.

Want more advice on selling your vehicle? Another major factor to consider when parting with a car is transferring ownership. There are significant legal reasons why this is important to do, and our motoring experts will show you how.