New year ideal time for used-car buying

While consumers look for good deals in the new year for toys and technological gadgets, this may also be the best time of year to buy a pre-owned vehicle as well.

According to automotive research website CarGurus, used-car shoppers may be able to find more deep discounts on cars before January ends.

Researchers at the website determined this after analyzing the trend of used car prices over the past year and found that they have been declining steadily since August, when prices peaked. It's anticipated that prices will bottom out by early January, but will soon thereafter begin to rise.

"Now is actually the optimal time of year to find a great deal on a used model (car)," said Langley Steinert, CEO of CarGurus.

To stimulate buying activity, car dealerships often offer low-interest financing for qualified borrowers. Consumers who are in the market to buy a used vehicle may want to review their financial histories to make sure they have high credit scores, as these increase the chances they'll be approved for a lower-rate loan.