How to Determine the Value of Your Used Heavy Equipment

How to Determine the Value of Your Used Heavy Equipment
How to Determine the Value of Your Used Heavy Equipment
Author: Small Business Expert | August 11, 2020 | Topic: Used Equipment

How to Determine the Value of Your Used Heavy Equipment

With new equipment, your company has to work within the price that the manufacturer or distributor sets. Buying used is more budget-friendly, but the values for a given model will vary.

Understand that pre-owned pricing resources are limited in terms of providing concrete estimates, as each piece of equipment has a different story and purpose before changing hands. But being informed when you decide to sell, trade-in or buy a new machine is crucial for your bottom line, so you'll have to start somewhere.

What's a fair market value for a piece of used equipment or machinery? Let's cover the ways to come up with an estimate when you're buying or selling.

Determining Used Heavy Equipment Value

Market Comparisons

Shopping around for comparison values at the beginning is a practical strategy. Try searching for similar models, years and hour ranges on online equipment markets or auction services. Use multiple websites to cross-reference and make sure you're not looking at a price that's too high or too low.


Manufacturing Brand

When dealing with equipment from the industry's top manufacturers, you can expect a slightly elevated value. In exchange for a big name, you're getting reliability and power you can trust. If there's one product factor you shouldn't compromise on, it's obtaining a legacy of efficiency and longevity.


Standard or Specialized Features

Rarely are two individual units of equipment alike, even from the same manufacturer and product line. Enhanced power, ruggedness or technology tend to raise the capabilities and therefore the estimate. Standard models — the base package — will cost less than an upgraded configuration.


Age and Condition

The service hours on a machine and its overall condition are often linked together. While you can expect an older model with more hours to have seen its share of wear, diligent maintenance is crucial for any unit.

If you're a seller, stay consistent with routine inspections and required parts replacements, and be sure to keep a detailed history and parts list. When you're purchasing, these records are a reliable way to spot any frequent problems that impact the equipment's worth.



Heavy equipment sellers may offer a "try before you buy experience," so be sure to take advantage if you're buying. When you can demo the machine and get a feel for its capabilities, you'll put more confidence into your investment.



Protections and guarantees included with your purchase will go a long way. Consider the benefits you'll receive and the duration they apply when comparing where to purchase. If you select a Cat Certified Used product, you can count on these late-model, low-hour, warranty-backed machines to work reliably and deliver higher resale value.

Cat® Certified Used Customer Value Agreement (CVA)

Contact a Cat® Equipment Dealer

Cat Used is home to a wide variety of quality equipment at competitive prices, giving organizations the most value from their used heavy machinery. When you find a deal, contact a Cat® dealer location near you to obtain more information. You can also receive alerts in your inbox when a new listing for used equipment fits your specifications — sign up for free email notifications today.