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Loan Amounts on Used Cars Rose 28% in 2021 [LendingTree Analysis]

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In ordinary times, consumers shopping for a car may head straight to a used vehicle lot to save money, but due to the coronavirus, shoppers can no longer expect a bargain on used cars.

We’ve found that the average amount of financing sought on used vehicles rose by 28.3% in 2021.

LendingTree analyzed anonymized data from 600,000 LendingTree auto loan inquiries to find where shoppers are buying older cars and how much they’re seeking to borrow for them.

A quick look at what we found:

* The average age of used vehicles for which consumers sought financing jumped 21.1%. Consumers hoped to buy used models that were 5.8 years old in 2020, but that rose to seven years old in 2021.

* Consumers are seeking to take out larger auto loans on used cars. The average amount of financing sought on a two-year-old vehicle rose by 28.3%, or $5,176, between the second quarters of 2020 and 2021.

* Madison, Wis., saw the biggest jump in financing amounts for two-year-old vehicles between 2020 and 2021 (regardless of make or model). Average financing inquiries here rose by 45.5%, or $7,575. Madison was followed by Rochester, N.Y. — 35.6% increase, or $7,112 — and Chattanooga, Tenn. — 32.4% increase, or $6,383.

You can view the full study here: LendingTree’s Used Car Financing Analysis Our study highlights that consumers are financing older cars at higher prices, a phenomenon made possible by pandemic.s?