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Is It Smart to Buy a Used Car in the Winter?

Many people wonder about the best time to buy a used car. While things like general economic trends and special promotions can change things, there are certain times when you can get better deals than others.

Many assume that winter is a bad time to buy a used car. More accidents occur in winter, which some assume to equal more trade-ins. But the slower season and introduction of the next year’s model can also mean promotions and better deals overall.

When is the best time to buy a car? Think like a seller

In many ways, selling a car is no different than selling anything else. Many factors influence shopping habits, including holiday marketing and gift-giving. Holidays and special events like the end of the year also warrant big sales from companies in all industries.

Most assume that spring and summer seasons are the best time for automotive dealerships. People are getting out of school, they’re going on vacation, and they’re spending a lot of their spare time on the roads. Contrary to what many people believe, the warmer weather doesn’t always equate to better deals on used cars. If you’re looking to buy a used car and get the best deals, waiting it out through the spring and summer can be a good bet.

The benefits of waiting to buy a used car

Many vehicle sellers offer better deals over the winter for two main reasons. Because spring and summer are busier months in terms of overall vehicle sales, private sellers and dealers are well-advised to offer cost-savings in the off-season to help keep their inventory moving. Also, getting close to the end of the year means that new models are being released, so if a nearly-new vehicle is what you’re after, you could get a really good deal on last year's model if you can wait until the newer ones hit the lots.

Things to consider when buying a used car

Looking around and doing research will help you get the best deal possible. There are plenty of options to consider when used car shopping during the winter season, and getting a CARFAX Canada Vehicle History Report and a pre-purchase inspection will help you evaluate your selections.

Check out our free Used Car Buying Guide or more information to help you buy a used car with confidence.