How to Maximize Your Vehicle’s Resale Value

As much as you love your vehicle, chances are you’ll want to sell it eventually. You’ll be ready to move on to your next car, and you’ll have to say goodbye to your current one.
When that time comes, you’ll want to get as much money for your car as possible. The more money you make on your old car, the more you can spend on your new one (or the more you can just pocket!). As such, it’s important to maximize the resale value of your car. 

Maximizing the resale value of your vehicle is an easy process, but it requires a little foresight. You can’t just do it overnight; you need to take some preemptive measures now. Here’s a few things you can do to make sure that, when the time comes to change vehicles, you can get the maximum return for yours.

Keep Your Interior in Good Shape 

Keeping your interior in good shape doesn’t need to be a big ordeal. You don’t need to get it detailed every week, or stop eating in your car; just give the cabin a little TLC from time to time. Keep from reckless behavior that may rip the seats, and clean up spills as they happen to keep from irreversible stains or damage. 

A damaged interior can be costly when you sell your car. Buyers can factor in the repair costs for the interior into the final price, even if they’re unlikely to ever have those repairs performed. 
Be Diligent with Your Maintenance 

Nothing improves the value of your car like routine maintenance. If you stick to your scheduled maintenance – meaning you have your oil changed, fluids changed, belts replaced, and tires rotated and aligned in accordance with your owner’s manual – then your car’s resale value will be at its highest. A history of routine scheduled maintenance lets the next owner of your car know that the vehicle has been well cared for, and is unlikely to have any hidden issues. The more you document this maintenance, the better. 

Limit Your Mileage 

It’s not always easy to keep your mileage low. You have your car for a reason, after all! But the fewer miles you have on your car, the better. When planning long trips, consider flying, or even renting a car. Every mile counts when it comes time to sell your vehicle. 

Keep Your Vehicle Sheltered 

If you have a garage, be diligent about parking your car in it. If you don’t, consider purchasing a car tent, or a car cover. Leaving your vehicle uncovered lets the elements (weather, tree sap, branches, bird droppings, etc.) damage the exterior of your car. As with your interior, any damage to your exterior can be used to dramatically lower your resale price.

Take Care of Easy Repairs 

If you’re planning on selling your car, you don’t want to drop a few thousand on an engine rebuild or a new transmission. However, you should handle any and all basic repairs. If any of your headlights or tail lights are out, or your fluids are running low, or your wipers aren’t working properly, get them fixed. The cost of light repairs is a lot less than the impact on resale value. 
Follow these easy steps, and you can get the absolute most out of your car when the time comes to sell it. A happy and healthy car means a happy and healthy wallet! 

About The Author

Brady Klopfer

Brady Klopfer is a freelance writer and editor from Los Angeles. You can read more of his work here