Most people know that when you buy a car (new or used), it drastically loses its value as you begin to drive it. There's no way around that fact, but there are some things you can do to help your car keep it's value. Helping your car stay valuable has a few benefits. For example, if you want to refinance the car for a shorter term and better interest rate, the value of the car will help you to be approved for that loan with less money down. If you want to sell or trade in your car, you'll get more back to put into the next vehicle.
Here are some simple things you can do to help a car stay as valuable as possible.
1. Pick the right car to start with.
Some cars are more popular with people who are in the market for used or certified pre-owned vehicles. Certain makes, models, years, and brands of vehicle have more staying power in the automotive market. If you choose one of these cars, your car will automatically keep some inherent value because of public perception.
You might want to also choose a color that will stay popular. Bright green, yellow, or even special shades of brown and blue can make a car seem outdated. You won't reach as many buyers with a lemon colored mid-size sedan. If the sedan was black, white, or silver, though, you'd have more takers, making the car much more resale competitive.
Finally, you should consider upgrading your interiors. Leather seats and nicer trim clean up better and are more damage and stain resistant. The interior quality of your car affects the overall resale value. More people are willing to buy used cars that offer some higher-end finishes that have been well cared for.
2. Make cleanliness your new obsession.
In order to keep your car as valuable as possible, cleanliness should be your top priority. Avoid (or try to limit):
- eating or drinking in the car. Stick with water in your car, and save coffee, smoothies, and juices for places where spills won't cost you hundreds of dollars.
- putting on makeup when driving. It takes dropping your mascara once to make a long black stain on the upholstery.
- wearing very dirty shoes. Your floors should be protected by car mats, but even so, you want to preserve the interiors as best as you can. If your shoes are really muddy, take them off and change into a spare pair of flip flops (you can keep a pair in the glove box). Take your dirty shoes home in a plastic bag.
- transporting animals and children without protective covers. If you have carseats in the back, purchase a fitted cover for the seat to help keep things looking nice. Animals can also have accidents in the car, so a liner over spaces where dogs and cats might ride can help to prevent stains.
Even if you don't often transport messy people and things, make it point to vacuum often, and take some time to wipe the dash and seats.
3. Stay on top of maintenance.
Don't postpone oil and tire changes, wear your brakes down until they squeal, or neglect to get the check engine light assessed when it comes on. Basic maintenance helps to prevent larger repairs and accidents, which in turn helps your car to have clean accident record and a stellar maintenance record should a future buyer pull the history report before buying. Repair things like broken headlights, paint scratches, or windshield chips before they become major issues.
You can find Hyundais for sale and other cars that could meet your needs at a local dealership.