Buying or selling old car depends on several factors. While in the past, a car with a mileage of 80,000 – 100,000 km was the best, car repairs are often worthwhile even after several years of use. The car’s mileage is still in the green range at 150,000 km and there are usually only a few visual defects. There are some factors you need to keep in mind if you need cash for cars or want to sell your old car.
So when should you, ideally, part with your car and consider buying a new one? You should consider the following criteria when considering:
Age of the car
Cars are much more durable today than they used to be, so that a car can easily be driven for up to 10 years now. In contrast to that time, this shows the clear technical change in the automotive sector.
At best, you should first draw up an exact statement of costs. Calculate how much money you have to spend on repairs each month and then compare the total with the new car costs. The mileage of the car is an important point, but the age determines the residual value. New cars lose around 22% of their purchase value in the first year, which is undoubtedly one reason why most people drive their car for an average of six years. It also makes a difference whether your car has already been paid off in full. If the car is already 100% in your possession, you can deduct the residual value from the purchase price for your new car.
What about security? Is your old car roadworthy? Are the tires OK? The exhaust system? What about the brakes and other wearing parts? Do they have to be repaired or replaced in the near future? Are there any safety concerns, such as poorly functioning seat belts or airbags? If you are seriously worried about your safety in your car, a new acquisition certainly makes sense, because a new car is of course much more reliable as a rule. In addition, it is usually better and more pleasant to drive.
If you decide to buy a new car, you should also pay attention to a few safety-relevant points. When you buy, do you get a guarantee that initially covers all necessary repairs so that there are no additional maintenance costs?
Please consider: You can save a lot of money with regular maintenance work. Testing the fluid levels or frequent oil changes keep your car in good shape and ensures that expensive repairs are avoided. Do you know someone in your immediate environment which can do this work or can you even do it on your own? Then you can, of course, also save costs here.
How regularly does your car have to go to the workshop? Have you possibly had a significant and expensive repair recently carried out that will keep your car running for a while? Then at best, you should keep your car. But if your car pulls the money out of your pocket with regular repair costs for small defects and these are perhaps even more expensive than the monthly payments for a new car, your bill indicates that you should look around for a new car.
Repair costs vs. residual value
Nowadays, new cars don’t have any weak spots, unless they come from inadequate production. Fortunately, this is not the rule with most manufacturers, so that the question does not arise of whether a five-year-old car should be scrapped or kept.
When it comes to the question of whether you should keep the car or sell it, you can often use a guideline as a guide: In general, you should only continue to drive your old car if the planned and upcoming repairs are not more expensive than half the residual value of the car. A repair is only worthwhile if this is the case. If this value is exceeded, it is better to sell your current car. Otherwise, you can quickly fall into a cost trap.
The right time to sell a car
When deciding whether to keep or sell your car, you also have to think about how long you should drive the car at all, because a car has a drop in value of almost 65% after registration. So you should expect a high loss if you sell a car in the first five years. In the following 5 years, the residual value will drop again by around 25%. So if you decide at this point, you make a loss of 90%.
Therefore, it is worth driving a car of such an age to the bitter end. In any case, keep in mind that minor repairs will not increase your car’s sales value. If your car has a residual value of 400 euros and you have the air conditioning replaced for around 200 euros, that doesn’t mean that your car is worth 600 euros as a result. The car’s residual value always remains the same, the only difference being that you have spent some money in advance – so again, a loss!
With good maintenance and regular inspection, major damage and defects to your car can be avoided from the outset, which of course, saves you money again. It doesn’t matter whether you own an old or a new car. As a rule, your workshop can tell you in advance whether and when a major repair will be due shortly. As the owner, you can then adjust to it better and, under certain circumstances, consider selling it before a defect occurs.
The right time to buy a car
When buying a car, you should pay attention to seasonal discounts. In the best case, you should buy a new car in the cold season because you can get the highest values. In spring and autumn, the car dealerships usually see significantly higher demand since this is the time when most of the new models come onto the market.
Therefore, only a few discounts are generally granted. Since car dealers sell significantly fewer cars in winter, sales are generally increased with high values. In principle, the car dealerships also offer increased discounts for cash payments. First, check the special offers from the car dealers in your area. But it can sometimes be interesting if you look around a little further away from your home town. You can also take a look at the Internet,