August 5, 2014

9 Simple Steps to Trading In Your Car at The KEY

9 Simple Steps to Trading In Your Car at The KEY

If you’re in the market for a new car, it could be because you don’t have one – or it could also be because your current car doesn’t suit your needs. In that case, trading in your current car can help you afford a better new car. But trading in your car isn’t as simple as bringing it to our buy here pay here dealership and turning over the keys. In order to get the best deal on your trade, you’ll want to come prepared.


Getting Ready

One of the keys to trading in a car or truck at our used car dealership is making sure you have everything you need before bringing it in. In particular, you should make sure you bring:

  • The Car’s Title: This is the single most important document you need when trading in your car. The title (or “pink slip”) shows that you are the legal and registered owner of the car. It also shows if there are any other registered owners, or if there are any liens on the car. If your car’s title does list any liens or other owners, make sure they sign off on the sale of the car before you bring it to the dealer. Failure to do this could prevent us from authorizing the sale, or even result in the DMV refusing the sale.
  • Your Loan Paperwork (If You Still Owe Money): Many times people will trade in a car that they still owe some money on. If this is the case, you’ll need to bring the loan papers with you. This lets us know the exact financial situation the car is in so we can offer you a fair trade.
  • Your Service Records: To ensure that you can get a good deal on your trade, you can bring in your car’s service records to show that it’s been taken care of. This includes records of your oil changes and any regular services.

Once you have these materials together, it’s time for the next step: readying your car for the trade-in.


Preparing Your Car

A big part of trading in your car is making sure it’s ready to trade. Fortunately this isn’t too difficult; it just takes a little time.

Get it clean: The first step to trading in your car should be to get it looking as good as possible. That means that you shouldn’t just run it through an automatic car wash, but rather get it detailed or cleaned professionally. There are plenty of places to get this done, and usually doesn’t cost more than $50, but that cost can easily translate into a better offer for your car.

Take Care of Minor Blemishes: Another thing that can harm the value of your trade is small appearance issues beyond dirt or grime. For instance, small scratches in the paint, dents from rocks or hail, and foggy headlights or plastics can make your car look less desirable. However, these are generally small and simple to fix.

For paint scratches, many auto parts stores sell paint repair products that allow you to buff these problems out. Most work quickly and are easy to use. All you need is some elbow grease and a little bit of time.

Dents and dings are a bit more problematic, but most aren’t tough to fix. Suction cup-style dent pullers can help you to pop metal back into place and smooth out any unsightly dents. Larger problems might require a professional, but that is likely to be money well spent.

Cloudy or graying plastics are another small problem that can be solved quickly. For headlights and taillights, use toothpaste or another mild abrasive to buff the plastic and restore a shiny finish. For gray or black plastics, use a plastic finisher from an auto store to get them looking perfect again.

Check Your Oil, Tires, Brakes, etc.: Finally, before bringing your car in, check commonly-replaced parts and fluids like oil, brake pads, tires, coolant levels, and so on. If you need to replace anything, do it before bringing the car in. You can’t harm the value of the car by putting new parts on it. It will also reflect well on how you took care of it while you owned it.


Make the Trade

Once your car is ready and you have all the materials you need, it’s time to bring your car to our dealership and make the trade. At this point there isn’t much more you can do except try to find a new car that will meet your needs and make you happy. However, you can still simplify the buying process to get in and out quickly.

Get Pre-Approved: At our buy here pay here car dealership, you can get approved for a variety of makes and models before you even set foot on our lot. Simply by going to our website’s pre-approval section and answering a few questions, we can get you ready to jump into a high-quality used car as soon as you come in.

Bring Your Documentation: One thing that can make the process of buying a car at our dealership simple is bringing in documentation that supports your purchase. This includes current utility bills with your name and address on them, proper identification, insurance details, a recent pay stub from your current job, or the names and contact information for a few character references. In other words, the more support you bring with you, the faster your buying process will be.

Know What You’re Looking For: You might be surprised how often people shop for a car without knowing exactly what they want. They’ll try out various makes, models, styles, and sizes of car before finally settling on one that they think will fit their needs. However, there’s a simpler way to choose a car that will make you happy. Consider what you will use it for most and what features you need, and then find a car that fits those criteria. This will narrow down your search considerably and make it easier for you to choose a car that will work for you and your life.


Of course, when you come to The KEY, we’ll help you find the perfect car for you. Our salespeople are known for being low-pressure and helpful to customers, so don’t be afraid to come to our buy here pay here dealership and take a look around. When you’re ready, we’ll get you behind the wheel of a great used car and get you back on the road.


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