Is it still possible to find good used car deals? Overall, the auto market is still feeling the effects of pandemic-related supply chain issues. With reduced production creating new car shortages, the demand for used cars has grown dramatically. As a result, prices have increased, limiting availability for many.
Regardless, choosing a used car over a new one is still in your financial interest in the current market. Not only are used cars cheaper than new ones, but you can also negotiate prices depending on the condition of the vehicle. And there’s a wider selection of quality used cars, so you’ll likely find an ideal vehicle.
Below, we’ll share five practical ways to find used car deals this year. Though demand is high, you can still obtain a vehicle that will meet your lifestyle needs and last for years, thus delivering on your investment.
Five tips for securing excellent used car deals
Expand your options
Flexibility is the key to finding the best-used car deals this year. Keep your options open on the type of vehicle you want and where you want to purchase it. Currently, buyer demand is higher than supply, so focusing on a single make and model or solely on local dealerships will limit your options. In that case, you may find it more challenging to obtain a good deal.
Instead, focus on functionality. If you’re looking for a vehicle for road trips with friends, consider a van, or if you need something to haul lumber for your work, consider a truck. Use the internet, family and friends to locate dealerships known for great selection and prices.
Set your budget and stick to it
What are you able and willing to pay for a vehicle? Before you consider searching for a used car, determine your budget. Make sure you include monthly payments you can afford plus insurance, gas, and maintenance. That way, you can focus on vehicles that fit your price range. Try to keep your monthly car budget to 25% or less of your monthly income.
Research the vehicle’s history
Knowing a used car’s history can help you negotiate a lower price, especially if its history indicates some concerns. Obtain a used car history report, which will include information such as accidents, number of owners, mileage, manufacturer recalls, title status, and maintenance history. There are a number of sources available to consumers such as; CarFax, Car History, Auto DNA, AMT, etc. They are simple to use. All you do is enter the vehicle VIN number and a report is generated. This report can help you decide if purchasing this vehicle is a good idea. Then, this report can serve as a negotiating tool.
Dealerships will also have a vehicle’s history report for you to review, so don’t forget to ask for it.
Unless you plan to pay the full purchase price in cash, you will need financing to buy a used car. Therefore, make sure you’re pre-qualified for an auto loan before visiting the dealership. Pre-qualification can help you in negotiating. You can also get a cheaper loan with lower monthly payments if your credit score is high. However, if that’s not the case, consider raising your credit score before trying to purchase a used car.
With demand so high, used cars don’t stay on the lot as long as they once did. So if you’re ready to buy, you have to act quickly. For the widest selection of used cars, visit dealerships when they update their inventory at the beginning of the month. Later in the month, you’ll find fewer vehicles available. So remember that you’ll find the best-used car deals when the selection is great.
Where to find quality used cars that fit your long-term needs
Ultimately, you’ll find the best-used car deals with the right dealership. Such a dealership will offer lower interest rates and a selection of quality cars that fits your needs and wants.
At Auto Market of Florida, we specialize in offering affordable used cars for nearly everyone. For over 20 years, we’ve been working with all credit types, whether good credit, bad credit, or no credit. With our buy here, pay here financing program, you can quickly get that much-needed used car and build your credit at the same time.