Triangulating the 3 main sources of data for vehicle valuations is critical because it accounts for all aspects of the market. Limiting yourself to one source when valuing a vehicle leaves you with huge blind spots and vastly increases the likelihood of taking a loss on a deal.
Book providers such as NADA Official Used Car Guide® and Black Book® provide an incredibly valuable service. They are able to abstract away much of the complexity and give individuals a baseline for determining values.
While these book value providers are essential to determining price, there is often significant variation between the numbers they provide. Our valuation method involves cross-checking at least 2 of these appraisal sources to determine how reliable the data actually is.
While these providers are valuable, they represent only one dimension to the solution, as they don't often fully reflect market variables. We'll see a few examples of this shortly.
Being able to see actual retail sale prices for nearly-identical vehicles is the last piece of the puzzle. This gives you an accurate representation of what buyers are willing to pay for the vehicle in a retail marketplace. Even if you're not planning on selling the vehicle at retail, the retail price will ultimately determine how much profit headroom you have, since almost all vehicles will eventually make their way to the retail market. Knowing how much you or your buyer will likely profit is an incredibly useful data signal. This is the market ceiling counterpart to our wholesale floor.