Are you in the market to buy a used car? Get ready to pay more

SPOKANE, Wash. — There’s a shortage in computer chips which is making it harder to produce new cars. This is increasing the demand for used cars, and prices are skyrocketing for anyone in the market to buy.

“There’s just less new cars, so there’s a greater demand for used cars,” said Nick Arrotta, the general manager at Northtown Auto Sales. “I think that it’s going to be like this for a little while. It’s not something that is going to be fixed overnight.”

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, used cars saw the largest spike in inflation nationwide, rising over 10% in June. More people are wanting to buy, but it’s harder for used dealers to keep their lots stocked with affordable vehicles.

“Selling the cars isn’t the hard part,” Arrotta said. “The hard part is finding them.”

He says when they went to auctions in 2019, they’d come back with 10 to 15 cars. Now, they’ll attend multiple auctions and be lucky to snag one vehicle. If you were planning to buy in this hot market, trading your old vehicle in could save you.

“Make sure you really know what your car is worth because it’s [in] high demand right now,” Arrotta said.

Gently used cars with low mileage are sometimes going for prices higher than what people paid for them. Tory Burney had no intention to trade in his truck but couldn’t miss out on these prices.

“The prices are at an all-time high,” Burney said. “I’m getting just about as much as what I paid for my car four years ago on a trade in value.”

He just bought a new used car because of the deal he got. Trading in something is the perfect way you can afford something in this market. Arrotta says do your homework, and don’t take your vehicle for granted. Make sure you get multiple quotes and research the current value of your car. It may be higher than you think.

“If you do your homework on it, there’s still deals to be made,” Arrotta said.

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