Used Car Price Guide

Used car price guide

These days, the used car market is something that everyone appreciates. People tend to sell their used cars before buying a new one. Some people even take part in a car trade-in where they trade their old car for a newer one. But if you want to buy a car, you need to know all you can about fair car values. For that, you need a used car price guide.

But as ordinary customers, how can we know all the things related to the pricing of used cars? There is more variety in used car types than in new cars because each used car is unique by itself with its different flaws and repairs. But not to worry. There are some reliable online price guides that can help us with this issue.

What is a Price Guide?

A price guide is, as the name suggests, a way of keeping track of and acknowledging different price ranges of a huge variety of used cars. No one person can actually keep track of the price applicable to each car. But there are websites like Kelley Blue Book, Edmunds, etc., where anyone can consult the probable price of any car.

Before trying to sell your old car, you must have some idea about the car’s worth. Otherwise, you can get scammed if you yourself do not know the current market value of your used car. This is where a price guide comes in handy. They help a customer get a proper idea about the price of a car without having to go from one dealer to another.

Car's condition affects the value

What is the Value of Your Car?

New or used car shoppers, everyone needs to be aware of the value of the car they want to buy. For new cars, the situation is easy. There is a fixed factory invoice. But if you want to buy a used car, the tables get turned. So, whether you want to buy or sell a used car, you must know the worth of the car. The value of a used car is mostly perceived, which means the same car may have different values for different individuals.

A car can have private party value, which means the value is what a buyer might be willing to pay to a private party for a used car. Sometimes, special repairs increase the value of the car. The optional equipment use can increase, as well as decrease, the worth of a car. Whatever the situation may be, there is always an answer in the online used car price guides.

How to Find the Value of Your Car?

To find the value of the car, you need to do proper research. Back then, when there was no easy way of finding information while sitting at your desk at home through the internet, people used to visit shop after shop to get an idea of the market trends. Car buyers would check different cars from car dealers and compare the price of different dealers for similar cars.

But things have changed now. There are online, trustworthy platforms that find the car’s worth for you. On these platforms, you can insert the basic information of the car, such as VIN, mileage, condition, accident history, year, make, and model, and then the embedded technology uses a huge database to calculate the possible value of the car. The calculated value is not the exact accurate value, but it gives an idea about the fair market range.

Websites That Can Provide a Price Guide for Your Car

As mentioned above, the online price guides for used cars are very helpful. Many people who have no knowledge about cars or car prices can now easily shop for used cars and also sell their old cars with the help of these price guides.

Kelley Blue Book

Kelly Blue Book is one of the top and most popular price calculators on the internet. For decades, this has helped people get estimations for their cars. Before selling or buying a car, people check the price on KBB. To check the car’s value, all you have to do is fill in the information about the car: its condition, age, make, model, damage, needed repairs, etc. After that, the price is calculated. From KBB, we can get an estimated price range for both private party value and car trade-in value.

NADA Guides

NADA is maintained by J. D. Power, and it uses artificial intelligence and vast data sources to calculate the accurate and fair value of cars. Through NADA, we can also get estimates for trucks, RVs, motorcycles, etc. To get a reading, you just have to select the brand, model, and make of the car. And then, you have to enter your zip code, mileage, and car conditions.


Just like Kelley Blue Book values, Edmunds is another well-known price guide for used cars. In the same way, to find the worth of your car on Edmunds, you have to insert the necessary information. Up on the entry, the estimation is calculated. Edmunds offers three types of price values, such as private party value, trade-in value, and dealer retail value.

You need to choose the correct variant of your car

Consumer Reports

Using similar technology, CR price estimation is also done by the use of a huge data bank called the Black Book. Historical and current data are used. Consumer Reports does not ask a lot of questions so the process is fast and easy. But as a lot of aspects are not taken into consideration, the estimation is not as accurate as the others.


Since the 1970s, AutoTrader has been a very popular name when it comes to buying and selling used cars. AutoTrader has its own price valuation tool that uses high-quality technology, and the calculated prices are very accurate and up-to-date. To use the facilities, you have to log in and give the basic information about the car. After you choose the exact model and variant of your car, AutoTrader provides a part exchange value for the car.


TrueCar is another very easy-to-use platform. All you need to do is enter the license plate number or the vehicle identification number. With the VIN, TrueCar finds the information about your car and calculates a rough estimation. To get an in-depth result, you need to input more specific information.

Get Your Car Ready to Sell

Everyone wants to make some money off of their used car these days. But most people do not try to elevate the value of their car. As most of us try to use up the car’s useability as much as possible before going to buy a car, the trade-in value is not much. Still, a little effort can go a long way in this case.

  • Polish the exterior: Just giving the outside of the car a good polish can change the look of the car. This can increase the value by a small margin.
  • Change the interior look: Changing the interior color, reupholstering the seats, and airing out the inside of the car increases the chances of attracting genuine buyers. It also increases the asking price.
  • Change the tires: Tires can change the whole outlook of the car. Change the ratty wheel with some new ones, and the price can go up to about $300.
  • Clean the windows: Cleaning the windows before submitting for an appraisal is a must. Otherwise, the car would just be as worthy as a piece of junk in the junkyard.
  • Clean the oil tank: Cleaning out the oil tank can highly increase the value of your car. It gives the buyer some car incentives to get a car that is free of dirty old oil stains.
  • Organize all the paperwork: Make sure that all the documents for the car are ready. Car insurance papers are a must. Also, the car must have a title; otherwise, you will not be able to sell the car in most states in America.

Clean up the car before selling


There are a lot of online-based used car sellers that are currently active on the internet. They all quote an offer within the hour if you want to sell your car. But only a few of these platforms work as a price guide to help anyone get an estimation of a car. If you can insert the information, you can look for the price of any car in the country. On the other hand, without the help of the used car price guide, ordinary car owners cannot make a good bargain when selling their cars.

Also, if we need to find the value of a car we want to buy from a local shop but are not very sure whether the asking price is okay or not, we can use the help of the guide. All we have to do is insert a rough informative description, and we can get an estimation of what the price will be. That way, anyone can use the knowledge and can have a successful negotiation process.

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