We’ve held off for over two years, but we’ve finally reached the point where we’re going to become a three car family. My son has been the primary driver of our car, with my wife and I mainly using our van. There’s been some times where we’ve had to adjust schedules due to car availability, but we’ve been able to make it work. But, my son has been saving his money, and after a few months of looking he’s found a car that he really likes.
My son is about to purchase his first car.
A critical part of buying a car is to check if the asking price of the vehicle is fair. There are several different websites that can be used to determine if the asking price is fair, and how much wiggle room there might be for negotiations.
Kelly Blue Book
Started as the Kelly Car Company actually selling cars. By using data from the sales at the dealership, they compiled a book listing estimated car values publishing the first Blue Book in 1926. Over the years it has become the standard in determining car value.
National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA)
The NADA guide states that their values are determined using two different types of information: transactional data and market data. Transactional data comes from actual sales data, whereas market data includes economic factors that include fuel price, employment figures, interest rates and incentive data.
Unlike other price valuation guides, Edmonds is only available online. They also do not give any information regarding how they get their data, so there is some question as to the accuracy of their information.
I decided to test all three online services and see how close they would be to each other. The car my son is looking at is a 2013 Honda Civic EX. The three pricing guides gave a fair market value within a few hundred dollars of each other which gave me confidence in the price I should expect to see for that type of vehicle.
Finally, if you’re coming to this posting because you’re looking to buy a new car, and you need auto insurance consider going with USAA, they have really solid customer service and good rates.
How about you, Clever Friends, have you used any or all three of these price valuation guides? Are there others that you use?
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