What Is Car Depreciation? 3 Important Facts You Need To Know

How does car depreciation work?

Have you ever wondered how much your car will be in a few years?

Some things in life have the fortunate circumstance of becoming better – and thus more expensive – with age. Wine is a prime example. A good bottle aged anywhere from 15 to 50 years can produce a great-tasting vintage, for which wine enthusiasts typically pay a premium. A painting may not change much if it is kept in good condition, but opinions on its aesthetic qualities may change over time; if they are favorable, investing in a particular artist can be profitable for a collector.

Most other things, on the other hand, lose value after they’ve been purchased. This could be due to a variety of factors such as age, wear and tear, or even market conditions. A living room furniture set may look fantastic for a few years and serve that purpose for a while. However, if you’re moving to a new place and want to upgrade to a larger set, you’ll most likely be trying to sell your used furniture for less than you paid for it. Scrapes, bumps, and stains reduce the set’s value even more.

Depreciation is the term for this decrease, and it makes most new car buyers cringe. Unless a car is a rare or classic model, which can fetch hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars at auction, the majority of vehicles on the road depreciate regardless of what the owner does.

When purchasing a new or used car, there are numerous factors to consider, including the cost of gas, car maintenance, taxes, and insurance. However, when considering purchasing a car, it is also important to consider car depreciation. In this article, we’ll look at why cars depreciate, how much they depreciate (in general), and what to look for when buying a new or used car.

Car Depreciation

Why Do Cars Depreciate?

Cars typically lose 15 to 20% of their value each year.

Car depreciation is a difficult concept for many people to grasp when shopping for a new or used car, or even when maintaining their current vehicle. It appears that there are already enough immediate concerns to be concerned about when operating a vehicle. There are questions about car insurance, that annoying grinding noise coming from the front right corner, and even monitoring how hot or cold your engine is running and how much gas is in your tank usually seem pretty important.

However, car depreciation is always present – in the background. Some even refer to it as a “silent thief” because of the way it continually reduces your return on investment in your vehicle.

The industry standard for car depreciation is that all cars lose about 15 to 20% of their value each year. As a result, a three-year-old car will be worth roughly 80 to 85 percent of what it was worth as a two-year-old car. The following year, when the car is four years old, it will be worth 80 to 85 percent of what it was worth as a three-year-old car, and so on.

So, for example, suppose you purchased a used car that is worth $15,000 after one year. This particular vehicle loses 20% of its value each year. So, after a year in your possession, the car is worth around $12,000. The car would be worth $8,600 the following year, or 80% of its two-year, $12,000 value.

The first year is usually the most difficult. In fact, depreciation begins the moment a new car is driven off the lot. Why is this the case?

There are several reasons for this. You pay a retail price for a new car at first: whatever the dealer is willing to agree to in order to sell you the vehicle. As soon as you get on the road, the car is reduced to its wholesale price. In other words, whatever the dealer would be willing to pay for the car if you were to sell it back to him right away. This depreciation is usually in the thousands of dollars. Furthermore, the money you spent on taxes and other licensing fees is no longer available.

What can alleviate the pain of depreciation?

Understanding some of the factors that influence car depreciation is beneficial. Cars that are in high demand and in short supply typically have higher resale values. Some brands depreciate less than others, and the condition of a used car will, of course, affect its resale value. Finally, it’s best to accept that most cars depreciate and that there isn’t much (if anything) you can do about it.

Car Depreciation: Summary

How do you calculate depreciation on a car?

Cars depreciate at varying rates, therefore the precise depreciation varies. Calculate your car’s current fair market value and deduct it from the purchase price (leave out any taxes or fees) to get an estimate.

What is the depreciation rate for cars?

Each make and model depreciates differently, thus there is no universal depreciation rate. However, many cars lose up to 20% of their value in the first year. According to Credit Karma, automobiles can lose up to 60% of their value in five years.

How much does my car depreciate per year?

Each automobile depreciates differently. According to Credit Karma, automobiles lose up to 20% of their value annually.

What will my car be worth in five years?

This depends on your car’s make, model, and characteristics. However, after the fifth year of ownership, a car can lose up to 60% of its value.

What is the depreciable period for a vehicle?

Five years is the depreciable period per the IRS.

You may also be interested in 10 Unexpected Everyday Car Technologies That Came From Racing.

Interested in car racing? Visit  F1 ChronicleIndy Chronicle or NASCAR Chronicle.

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