Regular contributor Sabelo Nxele has been outlining the car buying process. In his last column he discussed where to buy (you can read that article here). In his latest contribution he delves into the sticky question of what is resale value.

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What is resale value and should we even consider it when buying a car? How do we tell which cars have or will have good resale value? All cars depreciate, some depreciate more, or at a faster rate, than others, but why’s that? Let’s take a look at a few variables that affect a car’s value on the second-hand market.

A guesstimate

Resale is essentially a guess as to the future demand and price of your car. Ask yourself this question: when I want to sell my car will dealers be begging me to trade it in, will an average Joe want my car? We’d like to say yes, even if that’s not the case.

Resale value isn’t about how well specced a car is, it’s basically the same demand for your car when it was new but this time – used ie at a lower value.

Brands that have established themselves by being strategically everywhere you look, and have captured the hearts of their drivers are mostly the types that will be needed. Reliable, durable and value for money are among other key factors. As you read this article there are probably already a few manufacturer names popping into your head.

Take note

Another way of spotting what’s in demand by visiting a used car lot. Mix it up, visit various dealers and see what they have in their used car section. You’ll be left with the most common denominator. Easy access to online classifieds also places a vast archive of data at our fingertips. If you are reading this it means you have access to the internet, use this handy resource to find the values of cars/vehicles that are on your list.

Here’s a brief recap of the buying process as I have outlined before.
1) When buying a car you carefully consider your needs vs wants.
2) Think about where to buy.
3) Do lots of homework regarding resale value.

Armed with all this information we now need to go into a dealership to structure a deal. What sort of deals can we put together now that we know what we are buying and where we are buying from.

In my next article we talk about services and maintenance plans, to keep your car in mint condition, what areas should one tackle and why? Until then, happy and safe motoring.