How much is your car worth? Five ways to retain vehicle value in 2021

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Having a car is essential for a lot of people, however, buying one can be costly. Furthermore, over time and with consistent use, the value of your car can decline dramatically which can be frustrating when it’s time to sell or trade-in your old vehicle.

According to experts from car buying service, GoodBye Car, there is a way to help maintain some of its value.

These range from cleaning tips to small investments that could have a larger beneficial impact overall.

How can you improve the value of your car?

Restore plastic trims to add up to £60 to your car’s value

The plastic trims of your car, often black in colour, can become scuffed or damage over time.

In turn, this aesthetic damage can cause the vehicle to look old and tired, in turn causing the value of your car to depreciate.

According to the experts from Goodbye Car: “There are a few reasons why the paint might wear away, mainly from the UV rays of sunlight, which dehydrate the plastic and degrade it.

“It could also be caused by surface water and grime being thrown onto the surface of the plastic.

“There are a few methods for restoring the trims on your car, including products such as Carpro PERL and Gtechniq C4 Trim Restorer.

“Our advice would be to make sure the trim is clean first, then apply the restorer in a sheltered area, as you want to give it time to dry thoroughly.

“Keep on top of applications too, as they’ll likely need a top-up.”

The estimated cost of this is around £22.24.

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Remove unwanted smells to retain up to £2,000 of your car’s value

Some unwanted smells can be a signified or “damage” and could cost you thousands of pounds.

One of the worst culprits of this is smoking while inside your car, which can leave a horrible smell that clings to the interior.

According to James Dower, a car valuation expert, vehicle owners could lose up to £2,000 in value if they are heavy smokers.

Some dealers may even refuse to buy cars that smell as though they have been smoked in.

One low-cost way of removing unwanted smells is by using a solution of white vinegar and baking soda.

Goodbye Car’s expert explained: “Getting rid of smoke smells in a car is no easy task though, especially if the smoking had been ongoing for a number of years.

“The issue is that the smells get into the upholstery and make their way into the air conditioning system too.

“The fix for this isn’t an easy one, with the most successful options being steam cleaning, antibacterial cleaners and wet vacuuming.

“Deep cleaning a car can cost around £150, but it’s worth it to maintain the overall value of your vehicle.”

The estimated cost of this is around £150.

Choose the time of year you sell wisely to boost value

Certain vehicles are better suited to being sold at particular times of the year.

According to the experts, convertible owners could boost their car’s value by 10 percent if they sell in the summer months.

This is simply due to the demand for convertibles being up at this time of year.

Similarly, SUV’s are said to be better suited to winter sales due to their ability when tackling snow and ice.

Goodbye Car’s spokesperson advised: “If you own one of these types of vehicle, keeping it in prime condition until the calendar hits November or December is advised, then you can cash in for the maximum profit on your investment.”

The sale won’t cost you anything more but could add up to 12 percent to your car’s value.

Wax your car regularly to add approximately £150 in value

Waxing your car might not be a priority for many people, however, the experts say it can help maintain paintwork.

Any deterioration of the car’s paintwork can lead to a drop in valuation.

The spokesperson said: “The annoying thing about paintwork is also that once it starts to fade and discolour over time, it’s almost impossible to reverse the damage. Keeping on top of waxing and polishing your vehicle is a crucial part of maintaining its value.

“Waxing your car at least twice per year is advised, using a high-quality wax product. The best times to do so are once before autumn begins and again at the start of spring.”

The average cost of paintwork damage to a car is around £150.

Keep the wheels clean to add around £400 in value

Dirty and scuffed wheels could be the difference between a sale and a loss.

A build-up of dirt can also lead to corrosion and rust, which will end up costing you even more money.

Goodbye Car’s spokesperson said “If the wheels are in great condition, it makes the car look fantastic as well as being a clear sign that the car has been brilliantly looked after.

“As such, it’s likely to encourage buyers to fork out that little bit extra when you decide to sell.

“It’s simple to do: just rinse your wheels often and use an alloy cleaner to remove any dirt without causing damage.”

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