Category Archives: trading

Can I trade my car for a cheaper car?

Can I lower my payments by trading for a less expensive car?

trade for cheapere carYes — maybe.

But whether it’s a good thing to do will depend on your particular circumstances. Let’s take a look.

If you want to trade your car for a cheaper car, it probably means you are finding it difficult to afford payments on the car you now have. Or you simply want to trade down to have a little extra money each month by lowering your payments.

Let’s look at the two different possible situations, one of which will probably match your own situation.

Situation #1

You are “upside down” on your current loan. That is, you currently owe more on your loan than your car is worth as a trade-in vehicle. You can determine how upside down you are by first asking your bank or loan company to give you your loan payoff balance. Then compare that amount to the actual trade-in value of your car (see www.kbb.com and www.nadaguides.com). The difference in the two amounts will tell you how much you are behind in your loan (“negative equity”).

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How to Trade a Car with Negative Equity – Explained

Can I Buy a New Car If I Still Owe Money On My Old Car?

negative equity car loanThis is a very common situation in which car buyers often find themselves.

The situation is that you want/need a new car but still have an outstanding loan on the car you intend to trade. And you know (or suspect) that the old car is not worth the amount you still owe.

What to do?

In the case where you find your old car is actually worth more than your current loan balance, there’s no problem. You trade the car, the dealer pays off your old loan, and the remainder of the trade value is applied as a down payment on your new car.

However, the more common situation is that you still owe more than the old car is worth. You’re “upside down.” The difference in the two values is called negative equity. Your options depend on the amount of the negative equity. The higher the negative equity, the fewer your options.

Continue reading How to Trade a Car with Negative Equity – Explained