How to estimate the price of your car


Do you feel like it is time to sell or trade in your car? Before you post an advertisement, you may want to estimate the price and value of your vehicle. Having an idea of your ride’s current value could help you maximize your profit from your upcoming deal.

While it is hard to come up with an exact valuation to the dime, there are several factors you can take into account. In the Philippines we do not have companies like Kelley Blue Book, which can appraise and evaluate your car's worth. However, we do have car advertisement sites such as Carmudi PH, where you can get a lot of ideas on how to estimate the price of your car from its array of vehicle advertisements.

Below are some ways that can help you come up with a decent price so you can maximize your profit and still attract potential buyers.

Compare prices online



One of the easiest ways to estimate your car’s value is to compare it with the same car model that is being sold online through sites like Carmudi PH. Take for example a 2007 Honda Civic which has a 1.8-liter SOHC i-VTEC gasoline engine. Using the brand, model and year filters we have come up with the above list.

Notice that there is a big difference in price despite being the same model. Factors such as drivetrain, transmission, general condition and others mentioned below will also make a significant difference to the value of your car.

Just make sure that you are looking at the exact car model, year, drivetrain and engine when comparing your car with the online advertisements. If you know a friend who sold the same car model, you could ask them how much they sold their car for and the issues they faced before the buyer agreed to the final price.

Use online appraisal tools

Comparing prices of a Honda CR-V on Edmunds

If your used car happens to be imported or you bought it on the gray market, it is best to refer to online appraisal tools to get an idea of your car's worth. Websites like Edmunds for vehicles from the United States and EU-car-price for automotives from Europe are a good place to start.

These sites are very accurate and require you to select the car’s correct trim, its options and even the area from which it came from. Pricing reports from these sites are authoritative and although you are in another country, it should give you a figure from which you can start.

Research its value using print car ads

Conventional used car ads in newspapers, magazines and other reading materials are a great way for you to know how much your car costs. A great number of dealers still use them to sell second hand cars to would be buyers. One of the advantages of looking into print ads is that they are a traditional and established method of getting your car noticed by buyers. Look for key terms that may also be applicable to your car such as "all-stock" and "custom parts".

Ask around local car dealers

Car lot

Car dealerships are a great place to do your research if estimating the price of your car. If one happens to be nearby, you could inquire as a customer. One question you could ask the dealer is how they justify the price of the cars they are selling.

Often they will tell you the different depreciating factors that will decrease the value of the car over time.  They are:

Age of your car

Lexus LF C2

As your car gets older, its value depreciates, unless it is a luxury car with just a limited number of units produced. Generally speaking, when a brand new car leaves a showroom, its price is slashed by 15 to 20 percent. It can then lose a further 15-25% every year for the first five years in your possession.

Tale of the mileage

Car mileage ©

Your car’s odometer can tell a lot about your car. Not only does it tell you how far your car has travelled, it can also tell you if it is nearing its 15-year retiring age. If you are selling your car without it being reconditioned or repaired, the buyer may ask for a discount, especially if your car has registered a mileage of close to 100,000 miles.

Assess the damage

Car crash ©

Before selling your car, be honest and assess the damages and wear and tear of your vehicle. Make an inventory of every scratch, dent, area of rust, minor and major problem. This is so you can correctly calculate how much should be slashed off its price to attract a potential buyer.

When you have determined the price of your car, the next stage is to come up with a marketing strategy which can be as simple as finding a friend who is interested in buying your car.

Updated by Wilbert Tan on August 28, 2020

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