Keeping Your Car’s Value

by Don Elliott on March 30, 2011

Cars are generally not an investment.  It’s true!  There is no other asset you can buy that loses its value so drastically once you take it off the lot! We don’t like thinking about it and we certainly don’t like discussing it.  Then reality sets in – eventually you’ll have to sell the car.  No matter what the market says, you want to keep your car value as high as possible.  So, you invest time, energy, and a little money to keep your ride in top condition.

Here are five tips for helping you maintain your car value:

1)      Keep a Vehicle Maintenance Log – By keeping a record of your auto repair or auto maintenance, you can show the next buyer they’re getting a well-maintained vehicle.

2)      Perform regularly scheduled maintenance – Whether you buy a new car new or buy a used car, you want to keep it running smoothly.  Regular maintenance as suggested by the manufacturer is a good idea. Regularly scheduled maintenance recommendations include amongst others: tire rotation, oil change and filter change, and regular fluid levels checks. Most of what they say in the owner’s manual is common sense. They are the experts. They engineered and built your car, so take a moment to see what they have to say about recommended maintenance and automotive repair.

3)      Check for Car Dents and Dings – Eventually, something will bump into your car. If you take your car out of the garage and drive it, it’s nearly inevitable.  Walk around your vehicle and look for dings, dents, and/or scratches on a regular basis.  Simple dings can be popped out fairly inexpensively with the right equipment and expertise at an auto repairs shop. This is called PDR or paintless dent removal.

4)      Don’t eat or drink in your car – Yes, this is a tough one. Having a coke or coffee with you while you’re out running your errands is commonplace. However, by resisting eating or having sticky drinks in your car, you will maintain the life of your vehicle’s interior, and impress the next buyer when you decide to sell.

5)      Keep your car clean – Wash the interior and exterior of your car on a regular basis.  Cleaning up spills, regular vacuuming, attention to detail will help make your used car more valuable when it comes time to sell it. If you choose to use a car wash, make sure to use one that is a brushless car wash.  Parking your car in the garage is also an excellent idea for obvious reasons.  If you don’t have a garage, then avoid parking under trees.  Aside from a branch hitting your car, there are berries, bird droppings and tree sap that can be difficult to clean off.  Eventually, if these are not cleaned off, they can ruin a car‘s clear coat finish.

Do you have any tips, tricks, or products that you use to keep you car maintained?  Please share, and leave a comment on how you maintain your cars value.

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