Free Used Car Values: What Are They Really Worth?

The Internet is a wonderful tool. It is an incredible source of information and better yet, a great deal of that information is free of charge. However, there is information and there is "information."

When it comes to automotive values, it is one thing to put your trust in the hands of an Internet source reporting on new vehicle information and quite another thing to do so with respect to used vehicle values. New vehicle cost information is readily available from the manufacturers, doesn't vary except when the manufacturer makes across the board changes, doesn't vary from dealer to dealer and is, therefore, reliable. You can look at several different sources for new vehicle pricing information and they will all be the same.

Used vehicle pricing is an entirely different matter: Manufacturers have no input, no one "sets" any values, rather the values are largely dependent on the law of supply and demand, and if you look at different guidebooks you are likely to find substantial differences, often as much as hundreds or thousands of dollars. It obviously makes no sense to give equal credence to new vehicle pricing and used vehicle pricing, yet many Internet surfers do. Just because a site can provide you with accurate NEW car pricing doesn't mean they can provide accurate USED car pricing. They are "two different ballgames" and treating them as if they were the same can be misleading and costly. (see: What Makes Us Different)

Unlike many of those "free" Internet sites, Galves doesn't publish retail values (see: Why We Don't Publish Retail Values?). We do not believe there is enough reliable information regarding actual retail transaction prices to publish valid retail pricing. This lack of information is further complicated by other factors that can affect retail sales, including: extent of reconditioning, extent of warrantee, extent of advertising, any special financing, any certification, etc. Most of the suggested retail pricing found on the Internet tends to be unrealistic. And when you encounter what seems like an exorbitant spread between a trade-in value and a retail value, something is wrong! Either their trade-in value is too low, their retail too high, or both. We have learned to be skeptical of such pricing, and so should you.

So don't be penny wise & pound foolish. Yes, we charge for our pricing and we feel it's worth paying for. But a better recommendation comes from the thousands of our paid subscribers who rely on us to give them the quality of information they need every time they put thousands of dollars at risk as they buy, sell, and trade-in vehicles. And there is a good chance you will come across our information at the dealer you are working with. Shouldn't you be on the same page as your dealer? We are so confident that we can be useful to you in your next automobile transaction, we offer The Galves Guarantee
 

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