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Auto financing can help buyers capitalize on yearly sales trends

Posted on Tuesday, October 15, 2013 at 10:37:59 AM

Throughout the year, vehicle sales swing up and down. The entire process may be intimidating for novice buyers - or thrilling for those who do it regularly - but either way, affordable automotive financing is a critical part of the process.

Recently, sales dipped in September due to the Labor Day holiday, according to a JD Power and LMC Automotive report. However, each month presents new challenges and opportunities for buyers, and finding the perfect time could be complicated. Christine Dikdan, of Home Loan Investment Bank, offered some advice for vehicle shoppers looking to score the perfect deal and drive home happy.

In some cases, it is best to wait on auto financing until certain times of the month and year. Buyer activity certainly picks up in waves, and one period stands above the rest.

"As I was advised by one of my dealers in January 2012 - it's called 'Dealer Christmas,'" explained Dikdan. "The holidays are over and the new year has begun. It can run anywhere from the first quarter through May. This is the time when potential buyers are filing their tax returns and hopefully getting money back to purchase that big ticket item that Santa missed. This could be a result from need or want - but regardless, this buying frenzy can ride out into spring fever when the weather starts to break and people get antsy. The latter buyer is more of the 'I want a new toy and I want it now' type. Yay for this! It's what keeps the world turning."

However, the right moment to shop could be during "Dealer Christmas" or at other times during the year. Dikdan stated that other great times are definitely at the end of the year and end of month, ideally both if possible.

"Sales are generally slower," she said. "End-of-year consumers are usually more concerned with holiday spending - like fixing up the home for incoming relatives, holiday travel plans or the added expense of being the Santa. Sales people have goals, and when they are not going to meet goals they tend to be more flexible with pricing. Think move it or lose it."

Additionally, buyers are faced with the decision to use an auto financing plan for a new car or a used one. Each option has its own unique benefits.

"As in all life decisions there are pros and cons to everything," explained Dikdan. "A new car equals less problems but more money. Used cars equal more problems but less money."

Either way, buyers should prepare in advance before making any decision.

"Make a complete pros and cons list and a complete budget analysis," added Dikdan. "Do your homework. If you have a green light - move forward with a purchase during the last week of any given month, but preferably end of year when you can usually be a squeakier wheel."