Used Car Pricing

Using Used Truck Pricing To Your Advantage


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When negotiating used truck prices, the first thing you should keep in mind is that no price is absolute. No one can tell you exactly how much you should pay for a specific second-hand truck. Before buying a used pickup truck, you need a used truck pricing guide to ensure you don't pay too much for the vehicle. There's no doubt that a pickup truck is useful, but they've also gone from being purely functional to being the vehicle of choice for many people. These used pickup buying tips will help as a used truck pricing guide.

Kelley Blue Book

The Kelley Blue Book is a very useful guide for finding the proper price of a vehicle. It's used by dealers to assess how much to offer for a trade-in, but you can also use it as a used truck pricing guide. If the owner is asking for a price far above the Blue Book price, he's either overcharging or the vehicle must be exceptional. If the price is much lower than Blue Book, you should suspect that there are problems with the vehicle. However, don't discount the vehicle as you may still be getting a bargain!

Know Your Trucks

If you're buying a pickup truck, a used truck pricing guide will only go so far. You need to know you're buying the right truck for your needs, so do your research and see what payloads different makes and models can carry.

Knowing a specific truck’s trade-in price can give you an idea of how much it’s worth. If you’re buying from a used car dealer, the dealer has probably put some work into the truck to raise its asking price. Unfortunately, you have no way of knowing how much this additional work is actually worth. A good way to estimate this is by adding $1,000 to the truck’s trade-in price. This will generally allow for reconditioning, transportation and other general costs. If the dealer tells you that they put in a lot of money to get the truck up to its current condition, you can ask for written records on all the changes they made. Anything from new tires to a major engine overhaul should be properly recorded.

Service History

If it's available, examine the service history of the used pickup truck. This will let you know what repairs have been performed and when the work was undertaken. If major work has been done and the truck has high mileage, be wary since there's always a chance it will need more work in the future.

You should always obtain a history report when considering any used vehicle purchase and trucks are no exception

Have a Mechanic Inspect the Truck

As most used trucks are sold “as-is,” it’s important that you have a mechanic inspect the truck before your purchase. This is normally done to ensure that the truck is in as good condition as all the documentation says it is. However, any mechanical issues, no matter how small, can also be used during the negotiation process to bring the seller’s price down further.

Test Drive

You should test drive every vehicle you're considering buying. Since a truck is designed to carry weight, you should ideally test both with and without a payload in the bed. Before driving, inspect the vehicle, as there are things to look for in used pickups. Look for excessive tire wear, especially on the edges, which will indicate the truck needs an alignment. Check whether the lights all work and look under the vehicle to see if there is any fluid on the ground, as this will indicate an oil leak. As the truck idles, look at the exhaust for dark smoke, because this is an indicator that the truck is burning oil.

Inspect the bodywork, especially the truck bed, which can rust easily without a bed liner. Check that the tailgate opens and closes smoothly and make sure there isn't any rust in the joints.

As you drive, make sure the truck continues in a straight line as you brake. Also, take your hands off the wheel briefly as you drive to see if the truck keeps going straight. If it doesn't, it will need an alignment or other mechanical work. Turn the vehicle at full torque both left and right. If you hear a high-pitched squealing noise, the vehicle might need a new CV boot joint.

Haggle

Before going to a specific dealer, look around and see how much other dealers are selling the same model for. Knowing this information can give you a better idea of how much you can bargain for. It can also be used to force the dealer down to a lower price. If you find ads for the same or similar trucks from other dealers with lower prices, print them out and bring them to the bargaining table. Better yet, you can go online and find even better deals, as Internet prices are typically lower than those of local dealerships.

When you find a used pickup truck you want to buy, you can use the used truck buying guide as a guideline. Start by offering the lowest price you'd be willing to pay. If the owner or dealer accepts, that's fine. If not, you can raise your offer but based on the Blue Book guide, don't go too high. Set yourself an upper limit and stick to it.

Kelley Blue Book

To understand used truck pricing, you need to be familiar with the Kelley Blue Book. This is the authority on new and used pickup pricing. It calculates a price for vehicles of all years, dependent on their condition and options.

Although dealers consult the Blue Book to establish the value of vehicles they’re buying and selling, that doesn’t mean they adhere faithfully to it. It’s used more as a guide than anything else, since those who are selling will always want to make as much as possible from their vehicle. That said, knowing the Blue Book price is a vital place to start on used truck pricing. Take the time to do your research in the book because it is worth every minute in establishing a pricing baseline.

Demand

It’s a basic maxim of economics that the greater the demand for an item, the higher the price that can be charged. That applies to pre-owned truck pricing, too. A very popular model will cost more when it’s used simply because people want to own it. Similarly, a used truck of a make or model that’s been unpopular for some reason won’t sell for as much because fewer people want to have one sitting outside their house.

When looking at used truck pricing or used SUV pricing and trying to make sense of it, popularity is a factor that you have to consider. If you’re looking at this year’s hot, must-have model, the prices are going to be high.

Condition

Used truck pricing is also going to depend on the condition of the truck. Given two models of the same age, one which has low mileage, has been regularly serviced and looks like it just rolled off the dealer’s lot is going to fetch a much higher price than one covered in dents and dirt and which has mechanical problems. This is entirely normal and it’s why people take plenty of time to clean up their vehicles, inside and out, before offering them for sale. People will pay less for something that doesn’t look good and which will require work. Where someone has taken care of their truck, it becomes worthwhile at sale time and can pay off in more profitable ways than many people imagine.

Sales

People sell used trucks for many reasons and on rare occasions, they will ask a low price simply to be rid of the vehicle. These are instances that defy most used truck pricing and are usually the times when you can find a real bargain. However, instances like this are very few and far between so they can generally be discounted when looking at used truck pricing.

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