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How do you determine a fair market price for your car when it's time to sell it? Car-Worth can help you find the answer.

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Selling a car can be a daunting task. Often, the most intimidating part can be figuring out exactly how much your car is worth. Do you do it yourself? Call an appraiser? Let the dealership decide, for better or for worse?

Take a deep breath.

We’re here to make this process a little less nerve-wracking!

The primary ways value is decided in regards to vehicles are:

  • Actual Cash Value
  • Fair Market Value
  • Scrap Value

Actual Cash Value

totaled car crashed into a tree

Typically, the Actual Cash Value (or ACV) is used by insurance companies to calculate your car’s value when it’s time to make a claim. When your car ends up in a wreck or is declared a total loss after suffering any damage, the money the insurance company dishes out is based on its ACV.

By subtracting the depreciation costs of the car from the replacement value after the car is purchased, the insurance company reaches the ACV. For all intents and purposes, the equation is RV-DC = ACV.

Other factors of your car are also taken into consideration when forming your ACV:

  • Age
  • Mileage
  • Features
  • Pre-Loss Condition

Fair Market Value

The Fair Market Value (or FMV) of your vehicles is based on less concrete criteria than your ACV. It is a price at which a knowledgeable buyer and seller would both agree.

A “knowledgeable” involved party is defined as one that knows both prices in the market and all of the facts about the vehicle in question. If a buyer doesn’t know certain parts are missing, for example, then they are not a “knowledgeable buyer” and their offer is not based on a FMV.

The FMV leaves a large amount of room for “interpretation.” There isn’t an industry-wide definition for it, so oftentimes the FMV and the ACV can be assumed to be the same.

Scrap Value

Fundamentally, junk cars’ scrap value is determined by their weight. Smaller, lighter cars will trend lower with the payout received, while larger vehicles will net a bigger payout. This method is so tried-and-true that essentially every scrap yard will use the same formula to calculate how much your vehicle is worth:

Scrap Metal Price/Ton x Car Weight (Tons)

This formula is commonplace across the industry when it comes time to calculate the value of particular scrap metal. However, it’s best used to determine a minimum value for your vehicle. The results can and will vary depending on several external factors.

Scrap Value also increases with the presence of certain parts in the vehicle. Engines, transmissions, and catalytic converters are amongst the most lucrative parts of your vehicle.

happy client smiling on computer

Calculating With Car-Worth

Other factors in determining car value exist, but Car-Worth makes everything that much simpler by providing a free-to-use value calculator. Our calculator provides a quote that you are not obligated to sell your vehicle at.

Furthermore, you can receive your quote from Car-Worth in 90 seconds! All you have to do is submit relevant information like your vehicle’s year, make, model, and VIN and we’ll quote for FREE.

Like what you see? You can schedule a pick-up for the vehicle within 24-28 hours of accepting the quote, also completely FREE. We come take the car off your hands and put money in them instead.

Get a Fair Market Value for your vehicle by getting a quote here!

How Do You Easily Find The Value Of Your Car?

The easiest way to find the value of your car is to use an online calculator. There, you’ll get a quote from the company overseeing the calculator.

Car-Worth provides an online calculator that generates quotes at Fair Market Value. Factoring everything we can, we give you a value for your vehicle you're sure to walk away happy with.

What is the Market Value on a Car?

Market Value is what your car would sell for on the open market at that moment. It is not, in fact, the trade-in value or what a collector would pay for your car.

It’s a Quick and Easy Process


Tell us About Your Vehicle

Answer a few quick questions and provide a picture if you can.



In less than two minutes, you’ll have a guaranteed offer.


Get Your Offer

In less than two minutes, you’ll have a guaranteed offer.


Get Paid

Within 24-48 hours, we will tow your car for FREE and pay you on the spot!


What Is Your Car Worth?

What is my car worth