In today’s car market often times many buyers and sellers especially dealers typically refer to the blue book value of a vehicle to determine if its being sold at a proper price. Generally with newer vehicles blue book is a very good reference for the price of the car and is often a bargaining tool when looking to do a trade in and get financing. However when buying a cheap used car especially for cash, the market value of the vehicle is much more important.
So what is the Market Value and how do we determine this? Simple, research and compare. Much like when buying a home and having a real-estate agent do comps to determine a homes value instead of purely going off the appraisal (which tends to be far off from the actual prices homes are being bought and sold at) cars are not different and the best part is you can do the comparisons easily by your self.
Auction sites can be a great way to get started as these involve multiple buyers actually bidding on the price of the vehicle. You can often review previous sales and that alone can be a great judge of the current market value of a vehicle.
Also just simply browsing a variety of classifieds to see what the average selling prices are (keep in mind just because some one is asking a certain price doesn’t mean anybody is buying at that price) the average selling price online can give you a good ball park number to start with whether you’re selling or buying a used car.
Ultimately the goal of this article is too help people find the vehicle they are looking for or sell a vehicle faster and at the right price. Often times I see sellers especially preaching the blue book value of a vehicle and this can sometimes be far more or far less than what the true market value of a vehicle is. So save yourself the headache do your homework and happy buying and selling.