First released back in 1926, you can probably imagine that the vehicles contained within this automobile bible are very different now from the first document. According to recent statistics, around 20 million people visit the website each month. Therefore, it’s fair to say that the resource has just as much value in this digital world as it did nearly 100 years ago.
What’s the Kelley Blue Book (KBB)?
In case you’re one of the few that has never heard of the KBB, it’s one of the most accurate and reliable resources for those wanting to learn the price of a vehicle. Essentially, the KBB values all vehicles in existence by combining various data points. For example, this includes industry developments, location, used car prices, economic conditions, and more. Although there are some drawbacks to the document, including delays with some pricing information, it gives buyers and sellers a good idea of a vehicle’s value.
When you log into the KBB, you’ll notice that vehicles have the following:
- Trade-in value
- Private party value
- Certified pre-owned (CPO) value
- Suggested retail value
As you can imagine, this helps people who want to sell their vehicles privately. However, it also helps car dealerships to learn vehicle pricing information as well as assist buyers of both. For example, a car dealership in Fredericton will use the KBB to ascertain a vehicle’s price so that it doesn’t sell it for too cheap (or struggle to generate interest by pricing too high!).
While sellers use the KBB to price vehicles on the market, buyers can also access the resource to ensure that they aren’t spending too much on a particular model. For example, you might find a model that you like listed for $20,000 online. Yet, the KBB value is just over $14,000. With this simple search, you instantly know that the person (or dealer) is probably asking for too much money. It also tells you that you’re likely to find a more affordable version of the model with some more searching.
Values in KBB
You’ve seen the four different values available in the KBB, but let’s break them down even further. Although most are self-explanatory, a little understanding can prevent a big mistake either as a buyer or seller. Firstly, private-party value tells buyers how much they can expect to pay for the model from a private seller. Meanwhile, the trade-in value is for those who want to trade their vehicle into a dealer to get a newer model.
Next, you’ll see the suggested retail value. As the name suggests, this is what most dealers are asking for when it comes to a vehicle. Again, you can compare this to what your local dealers are asking. Finally, the CPO (certified pre-owned) value shows the value of vehicles covered by the popular CPO program.
Therefore, to identify the value of a vehicle, head over to the KBB website and start filling the online form. This includes whether you want to search by price or look for the price of new/used vehicles. From here, enter the make, model, year, and location. Once you hit the ‘Next’ button, you’re well on your way to learning more about either the vehicle you want to buy or the vehicle you’re selling.
The KBB isn’t updated in real-time, and some believe that there’s a bias towards buyers, but it’s generally accepted as the most reliable resource to price used vehicles for buyers and sellers.