7 ways to get bottom dollar for a used car
Buy a new car no one wants in the first place
In some ways, if you only start thinking about how much you'll get for your used car when it's time to sell, it's too late. The biggest factor in your resale value is the car you bought in the first place.
"One of the best things you can do is to buy a car from a brand with a reputation for good resale value," says Nerad. "Honda, Toyota, BMW, Volkswagen, Subaru: Those brands have a very good reputation for resale value."
To maximize the percentage of a car's purchase price you get back at retail, Nerad advises against getting either a stripped-down, bare-bones model missing key creature comforts or the top-of-the-line luxury model. At minimum, a new car should have an automatic transmission, air conditioning, power windows and door locks, and remote keyless entry to avoid losing an outsized portion of its resale value down the road, he says.
"I always recommend that people get the car equipped as the typical buyer of that model car would get it," Nerad says.