Business writer Ashley Jones. Photo: Sarah Harvey/ The Queensland Times
Business writer Ashley Jones. Photo: Sarah Harvey/ The Queensland Times Sarah Harvey

Buyers can save at Helland's

QUALITY VEHICLES: Jeff Helland with his dad Keith at the family business Helland’s Wholesale Cars at North Ipswich.
QUALITY VEHICLES: Jeff Helland with his dad Keith at the family business Helland’s Wholesale Cars at North Ipswich. Sarah Harvey

HELLAND'S Wholesale Cars in North Ipswich, which started in 1970, has provided quality secondhand vehicles to hundreds, if not thousands, of Ipswich people.

Over the 44 years Helland's has dealt with generations of buyers, many makes and models.

One thing that has been consistent has been the focus on providing excellent service and quality vehicles.

It is a true local business with sons Jeff and Mark taking a greater lead these days from father Keith Helland.

Helland's Wholesale Cars sells a range of commercial and passenger vehicles.

Mr Helland said the upper limit was $40,000.

"Secondhand cars are as popular as ever. I think that new cars are just out of the price range of a lot of ordinary Australians," he said.

He is proud of the fact that the business has a lot of repeat clients.

"We get customers who come back to get their next car but we are also seeing children of families coming now, and that is because of good old-fashioned service," he said.

"The majority of our customers are looking for four-wheel-drives, seven seaters and tradies are always looking for commercial vehicles. This is the focus of the business these days," Jeff Helland said.

While they do have other vehicles on the lot and available to them, such as the more standard sedan vehicles, Mr Helland said they were now well-known for the commercial and 4WD specialisation.

"Secondhand is still very popular, even more so in tougher economic times. These vehicles that we are selling hold their value and buyers coming to us get a good vehicle and save thousands of dollars against a new vehicle," he said.

Just before Christmas, buyers were coming in to get a first car for their son or daughter who had just gained their licence.

"These were Christmas presents for their young person. There were certainly more sold this past year than over previous years," Mr Helland said.

Helland's Wholesale Cars was started by Keith and Hazel Helland at 33 Downs Street, North Ipswich, where it still successfully operates today.

"Dad was a mechanic and then joined the army for five years and, when he got out (of the army), he started a car yard in Riverview for around 18 months. From there he moved to North Ipswich where he developed the business," Jeff Helland said.

It is definitely a family business in every sense of the word.

Today, Keith and Hazel are still involved in the business with son Mark looking after buying stock and Jeff in sales.

According to Jeff, customers are like family as well. While the boys grew up around motor vehicles and the business, Mark made the direct move into the family business after completing school, learning the "trade" from his father.

Jeff left school and moved into butchery.

"I was a butcher for 10 years and after that went to work for Bryan Byrt Ford for about two and half years. I wanted to have a trade behind me and then I moved into car sales. I think the customer service side of butchery certainly gave me the skills I needed for car sales. I then joined the family business," he said.

Helland's Wholesale Cars offers a finance facility; they work with brokers who source finance for clients.

"We also have extended warranty for our vehicles. The vehicles come with the statutory warranty and I give a further 12 months, but we have three or five-year extended warranties available. We offer after-sales service - we do care about our customers after the car is sold," Mr Helland said.

There is no doubt that the motor industry has been in the spotlight over the past several months.

The departure of Ford and Holden from Australian manufacturing has been devastating but the vehicles will still be available, even if not Australian-made.

"In reality this does not really hurt the industry," Mr Helland said.

"Parts are guaranteed for 10 years after the last vehicle comes off the line.

"The GTs and XR 8s will be the prized ones in time to come."

The Hellands are committed to providing the very best of service and welcome inquiries for vehicles. Helland's Wholesale Cars can be contacted on 3812 1214.

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