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Used Car Prices Predicted to Increase Short Term

November 15, 2012

Last month, I wrote about how used car prices were expected to drop soon. But that was before Hurricane Sandy devasted the Northeast region and destroyed an estimated 250,000 vehicles.

Long time readers know the importance of supply and demand when it comes to car prices, so this large drop in supply is now expected to increase prices by up to 1.5% according to the National Auto dealers Association. Edmunds.com went even further and is predicting price inceases of $700 to $1,000 in the short term. However, KBB and AutoTrader.com say the impact may be overstated and predict there will only be a $200 to $300 increase, mainly in the Northeast region.

But most analyts claim the price increases won't be limited only to regions affected by the hurricane. Many used car dealers get their inventory from a network of wholesale auction houses where vehicles travel hundreds or even thousands of miles to meet demand. That could mean price increases will be felt by everyone.

If you have the luxury of waiting, my recommendation is to hold off purchasing a used car for a few months. Wait until late January or February of next year when the market will likely be more favorable. On the contrary, if you need to sell your used car, you should do it soon to maximize revenue.

My Recommendation for Car Shoppers

TrueCar No-Haggle and Edmunds Price Promise 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

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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