Frequently Asked Questions

About The Appraisal Lane

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What is The Appraisal Lane?
The Appraisal Lane is a real-time used car community and marketplace. We enable consumers and dealers to submit used vehicles for Guaranteed Appraisals from our team of live experts who balance industry knowledge with current market data.
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Who makes up The Appraisal Lane community?
Submitting a vehicle to The Appraisal Lane makes you an important part of our community. That means your vehicle will connect with The Appraisal Lane’s team of used car experts, who collaborate to provide Guaranteed Appraisals on every used vehicle submitted. Our team is supported by The Appraisal Lane Buyer’s Network, a national marketplace of vehicle buyers who have specific inventory needs and are always looking to purchase cars and trucks to meet those demands. We are a community of buyers and sellers ultimately empowering you, the users of our apps – and we’re thrilled to have you.
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Is The Appraisal Lane a dealership, an auction, or a broker? If not, how is it different?
We’re neither an auction nor a used vehicle broker. Our community of expert car and truck appraisers works hard for you to find the perfect buyer who really wants and needs your vehicle. We operate both within AND well outside your market area (in other cities and even other states) to find buyers who may be willing to pay more for your trade. We actually purchase vehicles too and, at any given time, have thousands of used cars and trucks in our marketplace. Even if your vehicle isn’t in high demand among the buyers in our community, we are happy to appraise your car.

Submitting a Vehicle

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What’s a VIN?
VIN stands for Vehicle Identification Number. VINs consist of numbers and letters and are 17 characters in length for vehicles manufactured after 1981. Standardized by the National Highway Transportation Authority, VINs are generated by vehicle manufacturers and each vehicle as its own unique VIN.
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Where is the VIN?
A VIN number can be found in several places, depending on the vehicle type and manufacturer. Here are some places a VIN could be located: On the driver’s side door jamb, under the vehicle hood, at the base of the driver’s side dashboard, or on the exterior of the trunk behind the license plate.
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Why is the VIN required to submit my vehicle?
A VIN number can be found in several places, depending on the vehicle type and manufacturer. Here are some places a VIN could be located: On the driver’s side door jamb, under the vehicle hood, at the base of the driver’s side dashboard, or on the exterior of the trunk behind the license plate.
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My VIN doesn’t scan, what should I do?
If the VIN barcode is inaccessible or doesn’t scan, you can manually enter the VIN. Reasons the VIN might not scan include blurred barcodes, the age of vehicle, or if the car is registered to a country outside of the USA.
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Why are photos important when it comes to my appraisal?
It’s very important to take current and clear photos of your vehicle. Photos taken with adequate lighting are best. When possible, be sure the vehicle is free from excessive dirt, mud, or snow. The better the photos, the more helpful it is for our appraisers to effectively evaluate your vehicle and provide you with the most accurate Guaranteed Appraisal possible.
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How long does it take to submit my vehicle?
Submitting your used car or truck to The Appraisal Lane usually takes less than 15 minutes.
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My offer expired. Can I resubmit my vehicle?
Yes, resubmitting your used car or truck is easy. It’s important to confirm the current odometer reading, update any condition information and provide updated photos if necessary. Once completed, you’ll be able to receive an updated appraisal from our appraisal team.
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What if I don’t know if my vehicle has a particular option?
If you still have your vehicle’s original manufacturer window sticker that lists the options for your vehicle, that’s a great way to check. If you don’t have the manufacturer window sticker, and are unsure of your vehicle’s options, please don’t guess. Simply place a note in the comments section and/or provide detailed pictures so that our appraisal team can best assess the vehicle.

Understanding Value Factors

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Do modifications to my vehicle impact the Guaranteed Appraisal?
Yes. Generally, vehicles with factory-installed or factory-equipped options appeal to the widest market. Customized vehicles require specific buyers with preferences similar to yours, and can limit the total market reach.
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Can I negotiate my Guaranteed Appraisal amount?
Appraisal amounts generated from The Appraisal Lane represent the current market value. While offers from The Appraisal Lane are not negotiable, in some cases a dealer in our Buyer’s Network might respond with a higher offer for your vehicle.
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Can the dealer offer me more than the Guaranteed Appraisal?
Yes, sometimes a dealer might offer you more than the Guaranteed Appraisal. Some dealers might have a particular inventory need for your vehicle, or might be incentivized to meet other sales goals.
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What if The Appraisal Lane Guaranteed Appraisal falls outside the value range of my vehicle?
Value Ranges are generated by computer algorithms that combine information about your vehicle with generalized market data, and can be a good starting point in your research. These algorithms however, can miss factors that significantly impact a vehicle’s value, such as the unique aspects of your car, options, condition, and market demand.

About Guaranteed Appraisals

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When do Guaranteed Appraisals expire?
Guaranteed Appraisals are valid for 7 days or up to 300 miles beyond your vehicle’s current odometer reading, whichever comes first.
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What’s a Guaranteed Appraisal?
A Guaranteed Appraisal from The Appraisal Lane is a firm purchase offer for the vehicle you submitted to our community - an offer you can bank on. Guaranteed Appraisals are based on current market demand for your vehicle, and the information you provided. Specific and unique to your vehicle, Guaranteed Appraisals can be used as a down payment towards the purchase of a new or used car or truck, or can be redeemed for cash in hand from a participating dealer. It’s your choice!

Redeeming Guaranteed Appraisals

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I got a Guaranteed Appraisal! Ok, now what?
Once you receive a Guaranteed Appraisal, the community dealer you selected will process and finalize your offer redemption.
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Do I have to buy another car to redeem my Guaranteed Appraisal amount?
No, purchasing another car is not a requirement to redeem your appraisal value. You can use your Guaranteed Appraisal as cash in hand. It’s up to you!
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What if I want to redeem my Guaranteed Appraisal at a dealership that’s not listed?
Only dealers listed in The Appraisal Lane community can process your Guaranteed Appraisal. However, if there’s a dealership you want to work with that is not listed in our community, tell them about us! We’re always looking to expand our used car community.
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What if the dealer tries to offer me less than the Guaranteed Appraisal?
The professional automotive staff members of dealers in our community help process Guaranteed Appraisals by validating the accuracy and details with the vehicle condition report. If one of our dealers notices an item which might affect the vehicle’s value, then the dealer may submit the vehicle to The Appraisal Lane for an updated appraisal which reflects the correct information.
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Do I have to be the registered owner of the vehicle in order to redeem a Guaranteed Appraisal?
In order to redeem an appraisal value, you must be the registered vehicle owner or authorized agent. If it is a company-owned vehicle, you must be a duly appointed officer of the company and provide documentation when you redeem your Guaranteed Appraisal.
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Can I redeem a Guaranteed Appraisal on a vehicle that’s registered to a company?
Yes. If you are a duly authorized company representative or officer of the company the vehicle is registered to, you can redeem an appraisal value on a company vehicle. You will also need to provide business documentation in addition to your photo ID to demonstrate your role with the owning company.
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What’s a lien and what if I have one on my vehicle?
A lien is a way to represent ownership interest in a motor vehicle. If you are financing your vehicle, the bank that provided you with the your auto loan remains as a lienholder until your vehicle loan is paid in full.
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I own my vehicle (no lien) outright, but I lost my title. What do I do?
Most states motor vehicle registries can assist in processing a duplicate title. If you own your vehicle outright but have lost/misplaced the title, you may apply for a duplicate title through your state’s motor vehicle registry.
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What if I owe more on my auto loan than the Guaranteed Appraisal amount?
If you owe more on your auto loan than your Guaranteed Appraisal, you might qualify to rollover your vehicle’s loan balance into the purchase of another vehicle. You might also provide the redeeming dealer with certified funds for the difference between your Guaranteed Appraisal and the balance of your auto loan (*payoff confirmation required).
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Can I get a Guaranteed Appraisal on a vehicle that I’m currently leasing?
Yes, you get a Guaranteed Appraisal on a leased vehicle. The dealership you select to redeem your appraisal value can assist you with any additional paperwork you might need to process your leased vehicle.
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What should I bring to the dealership?
You should bring in a valid state issued ID, your vehicle’s registration, vehicle title (if you have it), and most importantly, bring your vehicle.
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Do I need a Drivers’ License?
No you don’t need a driver’s license, but you are required to provide a state or government issued ID to validate vehicle ownership.
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What’s a title?
A title is a state issued and controlled document which indicates vehicle ownership.
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What if I can’t bring my car to a dealership?
In order to redeem your Guaranteed Appraisal you must bring your vehicle to a dealer in The Appraisal Lane network for verification. If you have difficulty getting your vehicle to an authorized dealership, it might be helpful to contact the closest dealer in The Appraisal Lane community.

About Value Ranges

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What is a Value Range?
Value Ranges are generated by computer algorithms that combine information about your vehicle with generalized market data. While a good starting point in your research, these algorithms can miss factors that significantly impact a vehicle’s value, such as the unique aspects of your car, options, condition, and market demand. What’s more, a value range isn’t transactional. Meaning, when it comes time to buy a replacement vehicle or cash out of your current used car or truck, you need a Guaranteed Appraisal.