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How to value your car

Depreciation is an unfortunate fact of life when buying and selling a car. Working out how much your vehicle is really worth can be tricky but is important. You might be selling and want to get a fair price, or you need to value it for an insurance quote.

We’ve compiled a few different ways you can find out the true value of your car. Don’t forget, if you buy through carwow, our network of dealers will be able to help you trade-in your old car so, for the easiest resale, simply tell your carwow dealer.


It’s an old-school method and a time-consuming one but, if you spend a little time trawling through the classifieds, you’ll be sure to find someone selling a car of the same model from the same year as you own. Providing both mileage and condition are broadly similar, you could get a basic idea of the going price.

You must be aware that there are a multitude of reasons someone may want to sell their car, all of which have the potential to affect the price dramatically. This method should only be used as a rough guide but does provide a good place to start.

Online trade sites

If you look online, you’ll often find tens if not hundreds of cars for sale which match the make and model you own. A large selection will make it much easier to find one with similar mileage and in comparable condition and, if you’re lucky, you’ll find a car that’s for sale close by. Your location can make a surprising difference in vehicle valuation so it’s certainly worth considering.

Car dealers may offer significant discounts on vehicles for a number of reasons and this may result in a slightly skewed valuation. Another factor to consider is that added extras such as warranties or free servicing may bump up the price of a used car.


With the dawn of the internet age has come online auctions. These can be a good place to find out exactly what people are willing to pay for a car rather than just the price charged by a dealer.

If you can find a very similar car to your own, simply wait until the auction has ended and you’ll have a good idea of how much buyers are willing to stump up for a comparable car. Not having to worry about the cost of haggling or guesswork makes this a simple way to find an fairly accurate valuation.

Many sites feature classifieds-style advertisements so make sure you search specifically for auction listings instead.

Online valuations

In recent years hundreds of online services have popped up offering to give you an accurate valuation in return for a few simple vehicle details. While appearing to be the ideal solution, many of these sites also offer to ‘buy any car’ and could be looking to grab a good deal on your vehicle. Don’t be surprised if you receive a less than impressive estimate from some.

Free impartial services are becoming more common and without a vested interest you are much more likely to receive a fair and reliable figure.


All these methods take little time and won’t cost you a penny so it’s worth trying them all to get an accurate picture of the value of your car. The more information you can find the better, and with a clear figure in mind you can be sure to attract buyers and get a great deal yourself.

Sold your car?

If you’ve managed to sell your car for a great price, why not check out the fantastic carwow deals on a new vehicle? Put your ideal new car in our car configurator to find a great deal from official UK dealerships. If you’re not sure which car is for you, then our car chooser and deals pages could help you make a decision.

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