Spokane’s used car prices rose 41 percent in two years

SPOKANE, Wash. – If you’re in the market for a used car, be prepared to pay a lot more than usual.

Data from the Washington Auto Dealers Association shows the average price of used cars rose by 41 percent in Spokane in the past two years. 

It’s a trend not only impacting the Lilac City, but all of Washington state. 

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that used car prices rose 40.7 percent in Seattle, Tacoma and Bellevue from February 2021 to February 2022. 

More people are seeking used cars as dealerships face low inventory levels of new cars. WADA says this is a result of COVID-related chip shortages and supply chain disruptions. 

Washington dealers are calling on Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen to issue a notice of determination that a “qualified inventory interruption” of LIFO inventories has occurred to allow dealerships to replace their inventories over three years and provide time for production to normalize. 

Washington Senator Maria Cantwell is also calling on lawmakers to take action on the issue. 

“Anyone knows that the people who can afford to wait the extra six months for the new car probably aren’t the people who are really feeling the pain,” Cantwell said. “It’s the person whose radiator blew out last week and just needs anything on four wheels to get them to their job. And that’s a basic used car that might have gone up [from] $5,000 in cost, an additional 41 percent. And an extra $2,000 – taking that to $7,000, – is a trip the family doesn’t get to take or maybe next months’ rent that can’t get paid. So the impacts of this are really affecting American consumers.” 

Cantwell is now trying to pass the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act, a bipartisan effort to increase investments in the discovery, creation and manufacturing of technology critical to U.S. national security and economic competitiveness.

Cantwell believes increased investment in semiconductor manufacturing will prevent future chip shortages and help spur job creation in Washington state.

Are you impacted by the increased cost of used cars? We’d like to hear from you. 

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