What is Kelley Blue Book?

Daniel Joelson

Daniel Joelson

Total Posts: 344

Published Date: March 25, 2024

Daniel Joelson has been in the consumer finance space since 1994, he has helped to develop underwriting manuals for the financial sector. With a vast amount of Knowledge in consumer finance, he has been writing articles for all types of loans. With his knowledge, he is able to help many people to answer different financial problems.

When you are exploring used cars or considering selling your own vehicle, you might come across terms like “Kelley Blue Book” or “KBB.” These terms refer to a trusted resource used to determine car values. Let’s go deeper into what Kelley Blue Book is all about and how it can help you understand the worth of your car.

What is Kelley Blue Book (KBB)?

Kelley Blue Book has a rich history dating back to 1918 when Les Kelley, a car dealer in Los Angeles, started creating lists of car values based on what he would pay for vehicles from other dealerships. Over the years, Kelley’s car value lists became widely recognized and used by dealerships nationwide. Today, Kelley Blue Book is the go-to source for understanding car prices and values.

Kelly Blue Book
Kelly Blue Book

How Does Kelley Blue Book Work?

Kelley Blue Book gathers data from various sources to determine car values accurately. Here is where they get their information:

  • Wholesale Auctions: Dealers trade and sell cars at auctions, including vehicles from rental agencies, fleet owners, and manufacturers.
  • Independent and Franchised Dealers: Everyday dealerships that buy and sell used cars.
  • Rental Companies and Fleets: After using cars for a year or more, rental agencies and fleets send them to auctions.
  • Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs): Manufacturers sell used cars used for promotional purposes or by employees at auctions.
  • Financial Institutions: When a lease ends, financial institutions either sell the leased cars to lessees or auction them.
  • Consumer Private Party Transactions: Kelley Blue Book tracks the prices at which consumers sell their cars to each other.

Based on this comprehensive data, Kelley Blue Book provides car values in different categories:

  1. Private Party Value: The amount a buyer might pay when purchasing from another individual.
  2. Trade-In Value: The price a dealership might offer you if you trade in your car.
  3. Suggested Retail Value: The price a dealership might sell a car for to a consumer.
  4. Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) Value: The value assigned to a car if it’s part of an automaker-certified pre-owned program.

How to Use Kelley Blue Book (KBB) to Find Your Car’s Value

Using Kelley Blue Book to find your car’s value is straightforward and can be done online. Here are the steps:

  1. Enter Your Car’s Details: Provide information such as the year, make, model, and mileage of your vehicle.
  2. Location: Input your zip code to see prices specific to your area, as car values can vary by region.
  3. Vehicle Style: Choose the type of vehicle you have, such as sedan, hatchback, SUV, or truck.
  4. Features: Select any special features your car has, like navigation system, leather seats, or upgraded audio system.
  5. Condition: Rate your car’s condition based on factors like its mechanical state, appearance, and maintenance history (e.g., fair, good, excellent).

After entering this information, Kelley Blue Book will generate an estimated value for your car, both for trading it in and selling it privately.

Why Knowing Your Car’s Value Matters

Understanding your car’s value is essential whether you are buying, selling, or simply curious. It empowers you to negotiate better deals, make informed decisions, and plan your automotive transactions wisely.

Conclusion About KBB and Vehicle Values

Kelley Blue Book is a valuable resource that simplifies the complex world of car values. Whether you are in the market for a new vehicle, looking to sell your current car, or just interested in car prices, Kelley Blue Book offers reliable insights.

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