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Used Bike Shortage

Where the Seller is King

A used Honda 350 FourThe signs are all around. There's a shortage of used bikes in Washington.

I first noticed it when a dealer who usually has a whole coral of used bikes had a half empty lot instead. And then there's always those who are looking for a specific rare model of bike. It takes longer now to find that special machine.

A good bike is like real estate. As soon as it goes on the market it's gone.

Washington state has a lot of people who like bikes, and they like to have more than one. In a recent survey we've been conducting here at Sound Rider!, our average reader has more than one bike, in fact they have more than two. Most have from three on up.

Many first time enthusiasts buy a bike and the first time they drop it the bike goes in the garage and doesn't see the light of day again. Look around and you'll begin to see some classics showing up with only 60, 100, or just 1000 miles on them in great shape. But of course you've got to look hard.

The economy here is good now too. That means there's little need to start offing the collection. So the used inventory continues to grow in garages all over the area.

It's reached a point where dealers are running advertising pitching people to bring in their used bikes for trade or cash.

One glitch in the economy and this will turn around in a few short weeks.

Patrick Thomas/Aug99


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