How to find the market value of your car

How much is your car worth?

Published on Tuesday, 28 May 2019 at 14:43
How to find out the market value of your car?
Nicky Bentley 24th May 2019

Time to upgrade to a new car? That’s great! Before you start picking the shiniest car off the lot, you’ll need to sell your old one first. The question is, how much do you expect to get for it? Your car may hold a special place in your heart, like memories of driving up to Byron with your mates, or even just a standard late night Maccas run. But to buyers, they’re merely looking for the best price possible.

In fact, you may find that during price negotiations, you are unable to defend your asking price, resulting in selling at a price far too low! To help you prevent this situation, we’ve out together a list of tips for selling your car to get the highest price possible. Taking into consideration what the market value of your car is depends on the following:

Logbook entries

Keeping an up-to-date logbook, including car services and any maintenance work can have a major impact on your car’s total value. By keeping track of your car’s records, it makes it easy for its new potential owner to look into how well you’ve taken care of it. In other words, they’ll be able to estimate the technical condition that your car is in and if it will be reliable for them. It may seem like an arduous task, but keeping solid maintenance records will heavily serve you in the long run.

Up to date pink slips

Officially known as an eSafety check, pink slips are legal proof that your car is roadworthy. In NSW, it’s mandatory for cars over 5 years old to have an up-to-date pink slip in order for the vehicle to be registered, so make sure that you stay on top of yours! If you try and sell your car without one, you may run into some trouble. That is, if the buyer is even willing to consider it!


Naturally, the less you have driven your car, the higher its value. The standard petrol-fuelled car’s engine tends to last around 250,000km, while diesel engines can run for up to 350,000km.

A high mileage doesn’t necessarily disqualify you from getting a good price, though. It mostly comes down to the condition you plan on selling your car in. Remember, there are plenty of low mileage cars in poor shape! Again, this is when an up-to-date logbook can be your best asset when defending your car’s mileage.

Presentation is key

Take a step back and consider this; does your car look like a shiny new ride? Is the inside spick and span, smelling of lemons? Presenting a visually pleasing car can help in upping the market value of your car. Car paint damage, dents and a dirty interior can reduce your car’s value considerably. As can smoking in your car, as it’s near impossible to remove the smell from the upholstery.

Brand and model

Thanks to some very clever marketing and word-of-mouth, some brands automatically have a better reputation than others. The value for used cars can differ a lot brand by brand, as can popular vs non-popular models. So, here’s to hoping you’ve been driving a car that’s in demand!


Your car’s performance plays a pivotal part in your car’s market value. Is your car manual, or fully automatic? Does the air con run well? Do you have manual, or automatic windows? The more extras you have, the more valuable your car is.

Number of owners

If you’re the fifth owner of a car, you’ll most likely have a harder time getting a good price for your car, compared to someone who may be the first owner of their car. However, general maintenance of the car can off-set this technicality. If you’re one of several owners, make sure to sweeten the deal with a pristine maintenance booklet and proof that you’ve been taking care of your car.

Car terminology for different types of 'value'

There are many different types of value when it comes to car sales. Here’s how to differentiate between them all:

New Value: Price paid for your car when it’s brand new.

Catalogue Value: The price the dealership is selling the car at when it’s new.

Appraisal value: This is the value determined after an appraisal has been conducted.

Trade-in value: Price your car is valued at when it is traded in for another model.

Commercial value: The amount your car will bring to the market.

Residual value: Valuation of cars that are used for business purposes. If you own a car for business purposes, you can tax deduct costs associated with it, as well as incorporate the depreciation to its value. What remains after the years of depreciation is the residual value.

Demolition value: The value your car is given when your car is sent to be demolished.

Ready to find out the market value of your car?
If you are getting ready to sell your car, estimating its value will be an excellent starting point. If you start the journey well-prepared, you will have an easier time negotiating, and will be less susceptible to being low-balled.

In the state of NSW, you can gather a wealth of information on a car merely through the license plate. Service NSW offers a free rego check for basic information and a paid report to look into a car’s service history. In addition, for a small fee, interested parties can log on to the Personal Property Securities Register Website to find out if the car has severe issues, if it has been reported as stolen, or if there are any finances owing on the vehicle.

If you’re able to start out with a car that’s in good shape and is damage-free, you’re more likely to get a better price for it. If you’ve managed to accumulate a few small scratches and minor paint damage, then we would recommend fixing it first before selling.

We can provide you with 3 affordable, obligation-free quotes from local smash repair specialists, who know how to fix scratches and dents on your car quickly and easily. In just 3 minutes and 3 photos, you’ll be well on your way to selling your car in the best shape possible!

Hopefully you found this article helpful. If you want to get your car repaired the easy way then just ask us for a quote. It's free and it only takes 3 minutes and 3 photos of the damage

Get Free Quotes Now