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Before Covid changed the world, people would often sell their cars to private buyers online through Craigslist, eBay Motors or Facebook Marketplace. But now in a world of social distancing, more people are trading in their cars at dealerships. If you're interested in trading in your ride for a new one, you should definitely know what your trade is worth before you make that trip to the dealership. It used to be that most dealerships would take cars as trade-ins for one on their lot but were not interested in just buying your car outright. That too has changed. Driveway.com, for instance, will buy your car outright. Driveway.com can help you sell your vehicle for cash, or you can trade it in to start your next auto adventure.

How Much do you owe on your Trade-in?
Naturally, if your trade-in is paid off, it is much easier to trade it in, and it will lower the final price of the car you are buying. That means you have the free and clear Title with no lien on the vehicle. However, if you still owe money on your car, find out how much you owe the bank. Contact your lender and ask for the pay-off amount on your auto loan. Then compare what you owe to how much it will be worth as a trade in price.
  • If your car is worth more than what you owe, then you can use the positive equity as a down payment on your new vehicle. This will help lower your monthly payments on the new auto. If your trade in is worth less than what you owe, you can still trade it in, but you'll need to cover the negative equity on your new car loan or add your negative equity to your new loan.
  • If the car you are currently driving is a leased vehicle, you can still trade in the leased auto to buy a new one. Your Lithia Motors Auto Dealer will access the leased car's trade in value and pay off the lease company. If it is worth more than the payoff to the leasing company, the positive equity lowers the price of the car.  
Find Out what your Trade-in is Worth
Before you make a trip down to the dealership, there are several things you should know. The most important thing is to know the value of your trade-in. You can find this out by going online and visiting an industry guide such as Kelley Blue Book (KBB). You'll need to enter your trade-in's year, make, model, mileage and condition. Over 50 percent of trade-in vehicles qualify as "good condition." You can also check out similar guides on Edmunds.com and the National Automobile Dealers Association Guide. At Lithia.com, we use a tool called Trade Pending. This tool shows you the market value of your vehicle for sale in your area. This is one of the most accurate trade-in tools:

Trading in at a Lithia Motors Dealership:
Trading in your car at a dealership is a simple, safe and fast way to get you in the ride of your dreams. Your Lithia Motors Auto Dealership will take care of the entire process for you. Plus, if your old vehicle has any serious mechanical issues, you may get a better price from our dealers, that has the ability to repair your old car, than if you have to spend more money to fix it before selling to a private party.

Another advantage is that, depending on the state you live in, you may get a tax break on buying your new vehicle if you have a trade-in. All but eight states allow you to pay sales tax on the purchase price of the new auto minus what the dealer is giving you for your car trade-in. The reduction in sales tax in states with rates of 9 percent to 11 percent can be substantial. You can save as much as $1,000. Remember, your trade-in can act as the down payment for your new car. If you have equity in your trade-in, even if you still owe money to your lender, you can use the trade-in as a down payment without having to come up with cash out of your pocket.
Negative Factors that can affect your Trade-In Value
Negative Factors that can affect your Trade-In Value:
Vehicles with high miles over 100,000
Warning lights on dashboard
Rips in the seats, dashboard, an odor or stains
Dings, dents, missing parts
Positive Factors that can affect your Trade-In Value
Positive Factors that can affect your Trade-In Value:
Lower miles than 12,000 per year
Newer tires without any wear on them
Updated features: packages, navigation, remote start, sunroof, etc
Desirable model and trim that is hard to find
Panel only seen by widget owner
Let's get started:
You can find the Lithia Motors Auto Dealer near you by using our Dealer Locator right here. Once you have scheduled a visit at any of our dealerships, please bring the following with you:
  • Valid state-issued photo ID/driver's license.
  • Valid and current vehicle registration.
  • Vehicle's title or payoff information.
  • All keys and remotes.
Use Driveway.com
We've heard from customers that private car sales can take longer than selling to Driveway.com. There are often price negotiations when selling through websites. Some prospective private party buyers want owners to bring an auto to their own mechanic for inspection. All told, it can take a lot of time (sometimes weeks or even months) to sell a vehicle on your own. And, if you're still making payments on your vehicle while you're trying to sell it, you could pay a lot while you're finding the right buyer.

Here's how it works
With Driveway.com there are no tricks and there's no haggling over price. Ditch the classified section and Craigslist meet-ups to sell your car. Driveway's professional staff is fully vetted and finds the trade-in value for your auto. Then Driveway.com offers you cash for your car, or you can use it to trade for a new vehicle at any of the over 215 Lithia Motors Auto Dealerships across the country. You'll get an offer you can trust, and it is good for 7 days. Driveway.com takes the guesswork out, so you get paid fast. Best of all, Driveway.com will get you the most value for your trade-in with an instant offer and an easy pick-up or drop-off experience. It's quick and easy! 

Lithia Motors is one of the largest providers of personal transportation solutions in the U.S. and is among the fastest growing companies in the Fortune 500 (#252 in 2020). At Lithia.com we want to make your car selling and buying experience quick and easy with no hassles. Because at Lithia Motors, we want you as a customer for life!