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Winter Park / Maitland Observer Thursday, Feb. 5, 2015 6 years ago

Bargains to be had on new, used cars

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Not only are gasoline prices falling, the prices for cars that use the gas are predicted to fall as well.
by: David Uffington

Not only are gasoline prices falling, the prices for cars that use the gas are predicted to fall as well. So says the NADA Used Car Guide in its 2015 market forecast.

The availability of late-model used cars is predicted to rise by 8 percent, which means that consumers are out there shopping for new vehicles and leaving those used cars behind.

The availability of luxury compact utility vehicles will see the biggest increase, at 33 percent, followed by sub-compacts at 24 percent. Large cars, on the other hand, will see the biggest drop in availability, at 14 percent, followed by mid-size pickups and large SUVs.

This means that if you're in the market for a big SUV, you'll still pay a high price for it because there just won't be as many of them around. With the price of gas falling, those who own big vehicles are no longer in a hurry to unload them for something more economical.

On the other hand, if you're shopping for a mid-size or compact car, expect to see prices fall because of the availability.

Consumer money guru Clark Howard (www.clarkhoward.com) is now willing to consider buying new instead of used. Loan terms on new cars are better, and consumers end up paying less because the cost of the loan is so much less. New SUVs aren't a good deal now because of the falling gas prices. People are once again willing to buy gas guzzlers, cutting the supply and leaving the fuel-efficient vehicles on the lot. If you buy something no one else wants, you can save considerable cash.

If you prefer to stick with a used vehicle, consider your steps before you buy. Get your financing first, and know what you can spend. Check Edmunds.com or NADA.com and get an idea of the value of your preferred vehicle. Check Carfax.com to be sure the vehicle you want isn't on a previous crash list. Get the vehicle independently inspected.

Bottom line: There are deals to be had. Save by buying a used vehicle in the category of too much supply and not enough demand, or save by buying a new vehicle in the category of vehicles no one wants and take advantage of better finance terms. As always, do your homework.

David Uffington regrets that he cannot personally answer reader questions, but will incorporate them into his column whenever possible. Send email to [email protected]. (c) 2015 King Features Synd., Inc.

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