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Car Shoppers Should Take Advantage of Low September Sales

September 24, 2009 reports that this September's sales for light vehicles are expected to drop to an annual rate of 8.8 million units - the lowest since December 1981.

Demand has been falling in the U.S. since 2007, thanks to the recession. In 2008, the sales rate for automobiles was at 13.2 million units - down from the previous year's rate of 16.2 million.

2009 has taken the plunge even further. For most of the year, demand has been hovering in the 10 million range. Even the Cash-for-Clunkers program couldn't save it - it boosted the sales rate up to only 13.7 million in August.

Now that Cash-for-Clunkers is over, fewer buyers are purchasing cars. Demand already plummeted to 8.9 million in the beginning of September, and the trend is only continuing.

While this is bad news for dealers, buyers have a lot to look forward to in the coming months.

Average prices for automobiles have already fallen from $1,494 to $1,303 since Cash-for-Clunkers ended. Car makers have increased production to make up for the depleted inventories due to the government program.

If the trend continues, there's going to be too many vehicles on dealer lots again. Expect incentives to go up as well as deal making starting in October.

My Recommendation for Car Shoppers

TrueCar, Edmunds, and 1-800 Car Show are the quickest way to see the lowest car prices in your area. These sites show you no-haggle prices from dealers closest to you - and the deals are usually really good. This should be the first step you take when negotiating your car price. Follow this up with my checklist to make sure you squeeze out every last bit of savings.

California Residents - Important:

There is a new online car buying service called Roadster, available only to California residents, which I highly recommend you try - especially if you hate the stress of haggling with a car salesman. They provide an expert concierge who negotiates the price of the car and delivers it to your home with zero hassle - you never have to interact with a dealership. Here is my in-depth review of Roadster and why I recommend it.

- Gregg Fidan

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Gregg Fidan

About: Gregg Fidan

Gregg Fidan + is the founder of RealCarTips. After being ripped off on his first car purchase, he devoted several years to figuring out the best ways to avoid scams and negotiate the best car deals. He has written hundreds of articles on the subject of car buying and taught thousands of car shoppers how to get the best deals.

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