Some may think detailing a car before selling is not worth it, but we disagree. Detailing, inside and out, can help increase the value more than the detailed cost. Just like making minor repairs to a vehicle can increase the trade-in, so can detailing. The most important is having a properly working engine. Still, the appearance can help push a car up from fair to good or excellent.
An appropriately detailed vehicle shows it was taken care of and is more likely to last than an uncared one. And in our mind, it will last longer than an uncared one.
From AutoTrader.com - "Used-car sellers can expect upwards of a 200% return on investment by cleaning their car before trading or selling their ride." Depending on the condition before the detail, people can see a 3-12% increase in the asking price. The above photo shows the difference in the state alone in what one can get for a trade-in from Kelly Blue Book.
For the interior, some may only do a vacuum and wipe down and think that's good enough. However, to a potential new buyer, they'd be looking deeper than surface level and will see food stains and spills in the back seat. A good detail will help freshen up the carpet and upholstery to make it more inviting. Pet hair on the mats, build-up in the vents, and around the knobs and buttons on the steering column. On average, getting an interior clean can be $150-300. Remember, this is where people spend their time, and most don't want to buy someone else's mess and dirt. The biggest thing that may turn off buyers is any odor lingering in the vehicle, especially if it's a smoke odor, as many people can be sensitive to it.
A proper wash can get a better clean versus a tunnel wash. Dents, scratches, swirl marks, brake dust, tree sap, tar, and dullness/oxidation can diminish the overall look and condition of a vehicle's paint. So, a paint decon wash(a wash, clay bar, and chemical decontamination to remove above surface defect, leaving the paint feeling smooth) and paint enhancement polish can significantly enhance the appearance and shine and reduce swirl marks of your vehicle. This is not going for perfection in the paint but will improve the look from before. Depending on the level of exterior detailing you to want, it can be anywhere from $100 to $500 on average.
Also, if the vehicle has a lot of trim that is significantly faded, having it restored is a good idea. Whether it is gray or black trim, restoration can bring it back to its original look, and it will last, unlike little dressing, which might only last a couple of weeks.
If you have faded headlights, getting them restored will also help greatly. We've written more on Restoring headlights and how to do it yourself here. Besides being a safety hazard, clearing them up will help the overall appearance. This, on average, is $75-$150
Now, spending that much might feel like it doesn't make sense right before selling, but check for yourself to see how much more you can ask for if you spend the time doing it yourself or having a professional detail your ride.
If you want to have your vehicle detailed, Fill out our form today to get a quote or schedule your next appointment!