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18122 Rockside Road, Bedford, OH, 44146

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Dealership Info

Phone Numbers:Sales Hours:
  • Mon, Thu9:00 AM - 8:00 PM
  • Tue - Wed9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
  • Fri9:00 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Sat9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • SunClosed
Service Hours:
  • Mon - Fri7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Sat8:00 AM - 2:00 PM
  • SunClosed
Parts Hours:
  • Mon - Fri7:30 AM - 6:00 PM
  • Sat8:00 AM - 2:00 PM
  • SunClosed

Can You Trade In a Car That’s Not Paid Off?

Woman shaking mans hand over a car contract clipboard with car keys
While you may know that you can trade in your vehicle to a dealership for credit towards a new model or for cash, many Beachwood drivers are still asking, “can you trade in a car that is not paid off?” The trade-in process is relatively straightforward when the vehicle’s paid off, however, there are a couple more steps involved when a balance is still owed. Read on with the Mercedes-Benz of Bedford finance team to learn more about how to trade in a car you still owe on.

Determining Whether You Have Positive or Negative Equity

To learn how to trade in a car with a loan that is not paid off, you need to first determine which of these two situations apply to you:

  • Positive equity: your car is worth more than what you still owe
  • Negative equity: your car is worth less than what you still owe

To find out which category you fall under, you should determine how much you owe on your current vehicle, estimate the value of your vehicle, and visit local dealerships to find out how much you’ll get from trade-in offers.

When the offer is less than the amount owed, that means negative equity applies to your situation. When the amount is more than you still owe, positive equity applies.

If you have positive equity, learning how to trade-in a car with a loan is extremely straightforward. You’ll just subtract the money that you owe from your total return, and use the rest for whatever plans you have lined up. You’ll be back to your rides around Mayfield without owing any amount on your old vehicle.

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

So, can you trade in a car that’s not paid off? Thankfully, you’re not out of luck when you’re trying to upgrade your Cleveland drives. There are several options you should consider:

  • Pay the difference you still owe after determining the trade-in price. Likely your best option when learning how to trade in a car with a loan, this option allows you to only pay the difference between the two amounts with cash, if you have it available.
  • Transfer the amount you still owe over to a new loan. Although rolling over an old loan balance is another common option for drivers with negative equity, it can lead to increased monthly payments on the new loan.
  • Try negotiating with your initial dealership for a better offer. Take other appraisals that you’ve received to the dealership to see if they’ll match your best offer.

No matter which option you’re considering, it’s always a good idea to carefully read the contract before agreeing to the terms of your new car loan.

Explore Car Trade-In Process with Mercedes-Benz of Bedford!

Trading in your car and finding the right car doesn’t have to bring you stress. If you still have questions about how to trade in a car you still owe on, don’t hesitate to contact us. Then, search for the car that fits your Cleveland commutes by browsing our pre-owned vehicle inventory.


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