How to Trade in a Car That is Not Paid Off with ClickIt RV Liquidation Center?

Car dealer giving car key to buyer


A lot of Coeur d'Alene, ID drivers have either heard of or experienced the process of trading in a car they haven’t paid off. You can do it to exchange for a vehicle that’s new to you or for cash. The trade-in process is more straightforward than if your vehicle is totally paid off, and you’ll have a bit more to do if your vehicle isn’t yet paid off. Learn how to trade in a car you still owe on with ClickIt RV Liquidation Center.

How to Trade in a Car That is Not Paid Off: Considering Equity

You’re in one of two situations: both of which have to do with equity, so you’ll need to determine which describes your situation:

  • Positive Equity: Your car is worth more than what you still owe
  • Negative Equity: Your car is worth less than what you still owe

Using tools like Kelley Blue Book® values will allow you to determine how much your vehicle is worth. This is the first step in determining which type of equity you have. You’ll also need to know how much you still owe and what the trade-in offers from Spokane Valley dealerships look like. If the offer is less than the amount you owe, you have negative equity. If the offer is more than the owed amount, then you have positive equity.

Having positive equity puts you in an ideal situation for trading in your vehicle. You can trade-in your car, and you won’t owe any amount, you may have extra money from the trade-in to put towards your next vehicle as well. If you have negative equity, there are a few options for you to consider and assess which may be the best option for you.

How to Trade in a Car You Still Owe On: Negative Equity

If you have negative equity, how do you trade in a car that’s not paid off? There are a few paths you can go down:

  • Make up the difference you still owe after accounting for the trade-in price. This is the first thing to consider if you’re in negative equity. Not everyone will have enough spare cash to do this, it will work in your favor if you do.
  • Another option is to transfer the amount you still owe over to a new loan. This is a common option when people have negative equity and want to trade in their current vehicle that’s not paid off. The issue with this is transferring the amount to your new loan, and can increase the monthly payment. Either way you will still be paying for a car that you traded in. So this will make you upside-down in your new loan. If you can’t keep up with your current car payments and you are downsizing with a cheaper car, this could be the best option for you.
  • If those two options aren’t for you, then you should work with a third party and see how the trade-in offers compare to the ones you have gotten from your local dealerships. Third-party used car companies, such as Carvana and Carmax, tend to appraise cars at higher prices, which might be able to help you not have negative equity anymore!
  • If you still have negative equity with a higher appraisal value, then negotiate with the initial dealership you went to. Provide them the offer you got from a third-party company and ask them to match it. If they cannot match it, you can try to ask the dealer for a value of the difference you still owe, so you can sell your car outright to the third-party company while having the difference transferred to your new loan.

Whatever path you choose, the ClickIt RV Liquidation Center finance team recommends a cautious reading of the contract before signing the new car loan in Spokane.

Explore the Trade-in Process with ClickIt RV Liquidation Center

If you still have questions about how to trade in a car that is not paid off, you can contact our team at ClickIt RV Liquidation Center. We are happy to help you with all your needs! If you are looking for a used vehicle in the Spokane area, we recommend waiting until you’ve paid off your current vehicle. Curious how long you can finance an RV? We are the experts you should turn to!


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