As used car prices are transitioning, how can you extract the most value out of your car?

A new study from Motorway – the UK’s fastest-growing used-car marketplace – has revealed that over 4.2 million Brits have an excess car they do not use sitting on their driveway, whilst revealing that more than half of Brits (52%) are unaware of the untapped financial value they have lying dormant at home. As 6.9 million cars were transacted through dealerships in 2022 alone, Motorway has unveiled its top tips to manipulate the used-car market to extract the most value out their cars, and avoid common mistakes that negatively affect their motor’s valuation.

As the price of used-cars is falling by around 2% – although still 25% higher than they were three years ago – the research from Motorway has additionally found that 41% of the nation actually do not know the true value of their car. For 23% of the nation, the stress of selling a vehicle often proves too much as Brits cite social anxieties as the reason they did not receive a good deal when selling.

The study commissioned by online used-car marketplace Motorway has revealed four in ten (43%) Brits are missing out on getting the best price for their car, by not carrying out simple tasks. Failing to change tyres (37%) and neglecting to buy new floor mats (37%) topped the list of the common mistakes people make when selling their car, which impacts the potential final sale price. Surprisingly, over a fifth of Brits (22%) admit they don’t clean their car interior before selling, while one in ten (11%) don’t wipe down food stains before selling.

As well as cleaning, tasks such as polishing and repairing alloys (33%) or replacing old window wipers (27%) can help to add value to a second-hand vehicle. The research also revealed over a quarter (28%) of UK adults don’t clean the tyres when selling their vehicle, forget to change the oil (35%) and just under a third fail to fix damage to bodywork (32%) or polish the vehicle (32%).

The top 10 simple fixes Brits neglect to carry out, which could impact the value of their car sale:

Put on new tyres (37%)

Buy new floor mats (37%)

Change the oil (35%)

Polish/repair alloys (33%)

Fix damage to bodywork (32%)

Polish it (32%)

Make a small repair (31%)

Fill the tank with petrol/diesel (29%)

Clean the tyres (28%)

Change a wiper blade (27%)

Alex Buttle, Co-Founder of Motorway, comments on the mistakes that car owners and sellers should avoid when selling their car:

“Just like a home-owner would conduct DIY jobs before selling, there are a few quick fixes car owners could be carrying out, to get the best price for their car. To start, car sellers should give their car a thorough clean, inside and out. The better the car looks, the easier it will be for a dealer to imagine the car sitting on their forecourt.

“Replacing worn-out components is another easy fix, which will provide a return on investment. Floor mats are inexpensive and very easy to replace, which go a long way in revitalising the inside of a car. And if it’s a more expensive car, replacing key features such as alloy wheels with brand new ones, could drive a much better price for the seller.”

“For many people, their car is one of their most valuable assets. However, countless car owners still don’t see their car as an asset and as such, are unaware of the value of their car or how it depreciates – or even goes up in value – over time. We’ve created the Car Value Tracker to help our customers keep track of their car’s value and to empower them with the knowledge they need to sell their car at the right time.”

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