Are you a revhead? Or do you like having the latest and greatest wheels on the road? Sometimes keeping a car for just a bit longer than you’re prepared to can cost you more than you bargained for. How? By reducing the resale value, of course. All are subject to depreciation over time – you can hack off 20% the original purchase price as soon as you drive it out of the dealership – but some can hold their value better than others – and it’s not all about how desirable a car is in the marketplace, either.
Is it still under warranty?
This is a big one if your car is still under warranty, it can attract a big premium over cars without one. This is because any would-be buyer, after the warranty is transferred into their name, can return the car to the manufacturer to repair faults or defects at no additional cost. Manufacturer’s warranties are usually applied to the new owner after the sale, although extended warranties may need manual re-registration. Some new cars may have up to seven-year warranties with included scheduled servicing – and for EVs, batteries might have ten-year warranties. Selling while the warranty is still valid can net you a bit more money than selling without.
Do you have registration left?
Though it may seem minor, buyers will consider a car that still has the majority of its registration left on the clock than one that doesn’t. Though it’s only a perceptual advantage (you’re going to have to pay rego eventually) buyers will pay extra to not think about forking out for registration sooner rather than later.
Is the market in your favour?
You can’t always time the market perfectly, but you can get more for your car if it’s in your favour. Selling your older car during EOFY or end of year sales is a tough ask. People may – and will – find comparable new cars for the two- or three-year-old car you might be offering. If you can sell during months where new cars are priced at full retail, buyers could be lured by your “bargain” price.
Are parts abundant?
There’s nothing worse than waiting weeks for a crucial part to arrive just get your car running again. Cars with parts still being manufactured – preferably within the country or region – are a safer bet than older clunkers or imported models which may take obscure and costly replacement parts. 
The top five cars that hold their value
Interestingly, the top two cars that hold their resale value after three years are battery EVs: the Nissan Leaf (81.4% value retained) and the Tesla Model 3 (81.3%). Coming in at equal third is the Toyota RAV4 and the Suzuki Ignis, (80.9%) although the RAV4 hybrid GX model tips the scale at 84.9% value held. The Hyundai Sonata comes in at fourth (80.7%) and the workhorse of the lot, the Toyota HiLux comes in at fifth (80.6%).
Selling early and using these tips could net you a higher price than selling later!