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Car shortage means big return on trade-ins

Updated: Jun. 15, 2021 at 7:04 PM CDT
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - It’s hard to buy a car, and it’s hard to lease a car these days.

It’s not the only reason, but a shortage of computer chips has resulted in production cutbacks, record low inventories and higher list prices.

When there’s a shortage it’s bad for some, but usually, it means there’s an opportunity for someone else.

At first glance, Navarre Auto Group’s lots appear full, but like other dealers and used car lots, there are spaces between cars for sale, due to the Nationwide shortage.

But it if you have a good trade, you may be amazed at the equity in it, according to Ryan Navarre, owner of the auto group.

“If you’re trading in your vehicle - give you an example - if you had a 2018 Silverado, and you’re trading that vehicle in, you’re going to get more than you paid for it. We’re at a record high. In 30 years, I’ve never seen it this high, and I don’t think we’ll ever see this again - where you can get so much on a used trade in right now,” Navarre said.

And the shortage also affects used car lots and the availability of rental cars.

“So, we had a trainer that just came into town, and he went to go rent a car at the airport. He couldn’t rent one, so we had to go pick him up,” Navarre said.

There was one woman at the dealership who said people stopped her wanting to buy her vehicle.

The car shortage may be more acute in the Lake Area since so many cars flooded in the May storms. Navarre says they check and re-check trade-ins to make sure they weren’t flooded.

“We run reports on it that will show us if there were insurance claims on the vehicle, and they have to disclose that. Also, we inspect the vehicle for any kind of water damage,” he said.

Some predict the computer chip shortage will ease up by the end of the year.

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