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Used cars for sale in NJare moving quickly in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Sandy swept through the state in the end of October and devastated houses, businesses, roads and vehicles. The storm caused an estimated $50 billion in damages and losses and led to hundreds of thousands of insurance claims. And it’s no surprise that many of those claims are on damaged or destroyed cars: there were roughly 190,000 vehicles damaged in New Jersey and New York alone.

The cause for the widespread vehicle damage includes several factors. The biggest cause was flooding, which swamped vehicles and left them useless. Even farther inland, many areas experienced severe flooding due to the heavy rainfall and quickly blocked storm drains. Vehicles left out on the street sometimes became filled with water purely from the downpour, even if there was not deep flooding in the area.

Another major cause of damage was debris and falling branches. In the high winds, even small objects became serious projectiles and larger objects like trash cans took out plenty of windshields. While much of the wind and debris damage was cosmetic, the storm did bring whole trees and garage roofs down, crushing vehicles altogether.

 The result is thousands of people are flocking to used car dealerships looking to replace their vehicles. While both used and new cars have seen increases in sales, used seems to be the preference. This could be because for many people, insurance payments have been slow to come through as overwhelmed insurance companies struggle to handle all of the claims. But for many people it also represents a savvy strategy: an insurance claim on a destroyed car is unlikely to pay for a brand new equivalent, and by opting for a used car consumers can cover the entire cost of their replacement car using insurance money – and maybe even have some left over.

While the demand for used cars is up and dealers are doing good business, so far there doesn’t seem to be a price hike. Many used car dealers lost vehicles of their own, losing significant investment in their stock of cars to the same downpour that affected their customers. And they know that the boost in sales is temporary, unlikely to last more than a month or two. The result is high competition between dealerships, racing to offer the best deal and draw customers away from each other during the boon.

The result? If you’re looking for used cars for sale in NJ, you aren’t alone – but your timing might be perfect.

Jake Alexander is a free lance writer who enjoys blogging about a varitey of subjects. Follow him @JakeAlexander17.