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Used car prices reach recent low

Posted on Friday, November 15, 2013 at 10:41:08 AM

Recently, buyers interested in auto financing had to choose between elevated used car prices or newer options. The difference between the costs was minimal, and uncertainty in the market meant that buyers had a tough choice.

Now, that decision could be easier. According to data from Edmunds.com, used car prices have dropped to their lowest level since 2009. This trend is a different direction for the segment. 

"Now that the new car market has hit its stride, buyers are no longer drawn to used cars the way they have been in recent years," said Joe Spina, Edmunds.com's director of used car analysis. "Used car prices will likely continue to decline in the coming months simply because there will be more of these vehicles sitting on dealer lots."

In the third quarter of 2013, the average used car sales price was $15,617, or 2.8 percent lower than the second quarter. In 2009, the average price was only $14,808, the last time it was this low. 

Buyers using auto financing to purchase a used car should do their research, according to U.S. News and World Report. It could be a smart idea to have a mechanic look over the vehicle beforehand, and certified pre-owned options could be good ideas for nervous buyers.