BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — If you’re buying a used car, NBC News says you may pay 30 percent more now than you would have paid this time last year. Car dealers say it’s all a matter of supply and demand, as there are fewer vehicles on the market, and they’re getting pricier by the day. The shortage sparked when many factories slowed production during the pandemic. The auto industry also faces a shortage of the tiny computer chips that control parts of your car, ranging from the engine to the airbags … as demand for small electronics like phones and laptops skyrocketed during the pandemic lockdown.
“People are getting back on the road and they’re trying to a buy a newer vehicle, but they can’t because the prices have gone up ridiculous amounts,” said Rene Cornejo, Co-Owner of Golden Valley Auto. “There’s a very limited supply so they’re going to the used car market.”
17’s Moses Small asked why it’s so expensive and difficult to find a new car.
“The profit margins aren’t what they used to be,” said Cornejo. “A lot of dealers, they’ve stopped buying trucks all together…because you go to auction and they’re going for what they go for in retail. Our prices have gone up at auction, so we have to put them a little higher.”
It’s not just getting more expensive to buy a car.
“Everything has gone up,” said Cornejo. “AC work, anything like that. It would take an average of $500 to $1,000 to recondition a vehicle. Now it would take an extra $500. That’s where our profits start going lower.”
Experts say it’s a great time to sell your car, but if you’re looking for a deal at the car lot … it may be best to get in the slow lane and take your time.