How to find out the true market value of your car

Just the other day a family member was telling me how they have struggled to sell their car because most of the places they have approached have offered them so little for it. When I asked what the market value of the car was, they weren’t sure. This is a common problem among car sellers. It can be difficult to determine the market value of a car.

Then there are the issues of buying a car. How do you know if a car has been stolen or if it has a full service history as the buyer claims?

Introducing the FirstCheck app. Together with Transunion, this app is now providing consumers with information that was previously reserved for car dealers, banks and insurance companies. Basically, as a consumer, you now have access to the bank and SA Police Service databases to check if a car is finance, flagged or stolen.

As head of Auto at Transunion Africa, Kriben Reddy, says, “Knowing the value and history of a car means you’re far more empowered when you enter the buying cycle. With this app, you’re not only able to put a fair price on the car upfront, but you’re also far less likely to fall victim to fraudsters by having insight into the full history of the vehicle.”

So what exactly does the FirstCheck app offer?


The valuation report provides both current trade and retail values to ensure the price being asked reflects the vehicle’s true market value. This also helps consumers ensure they are paying the correct insurance premiums. It also offers a view of how much the vehicle has depreciated over the past 12 months, and projected future values.


The first part of the verification report provides the car’s original manufacturer information, including vehicle identification number (VIN), engine number and colour, and highlights any discrepancies. The second part follows the vehicle through its lifecycle, as it were, with full financing information, legal status and even mileage at certain points.

The verification report also tells a purchaser if a car has been “microdotted” – where a car is marked with thousands of dots. If so, potential buyers can use a microdot scanner to check if body panels and even engine parts have been replaced.

If you are in the market to buy or sell your car, I highly suggest you download this FirstCheck app.

I’m Julz, South African motoring journalist with a passion for cars and a questionable sense of humour. I am not your average motoring journalist, and this is not your average motoring website.

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