Car auction

How to Get a Square Deal at an Auto Auction

Whether you are bidding on salvage cars online, checking out the inventory at the local Insurance Auto Auctions or researching Copart Auto Auctions on the, buying a car with your bids can be a very smart thing to do. Dealers have long known about auto auctions, and chances are many of the cars, trucks and SUVs on their lots came from their local auction houses. Now the public is catching on in a big way, navigating their way through the sale lanes, buyer fees, vehicle warranties and other unique aspects of the automotive auction world.

If you will be buying a car from an auction, there are some key things you need to know. Buying a car from an auction is not the same as buying a vehicle from your local dealer or the guy down the street, so you need to do your homework, know how to bid, and most importantly, know how much to pay.

How to Get a Good Deal at a Car Auction

If you are willing to do your homework and exercise some due diligence, buying a car from an auction could save you a ton of money. Since you are in essence buying direct, the prices can be far lower than the local dealership, and even lower than a private seller.

Before you start bidding, however, you will need to know the rules of the road. Start by checking out the terms of the auction, including the damages on the vehicles coming through the lanes. Most auctions sell all their vehicles as-is, while others provide a basic warranty on the vehicles they sell. Keep in mind, however, that lower priced vehicles may be sold as-is, so place your bids accordingly.

A Three Lane Circus

The typical Copart Auto Auction may sell hundreds of vehicles in a single day, and that can make bidding on the car you want somewhat confusing. Larger auto auctions typically utilize many different lanes, and if you are in the wrong lane when the vehicle you want comes through, you will be out of luck.

Each vehicle entered in the auction should have a number on the windshield, and this number will indicate the lane number and the vehicle number. If you see an A-52 on the windshield, you will need to be in the A lane when that number comes up for bid. It pays to arrive early, since you will want to stake out a good bidding spot.

Check Out the Vehicles

Every car auction will have different guidelines for the inspection of the vehicles on their lots. Some Copart Auto Auctions set aside a day or two for would-be bidders to start and even drive the vehicles, while others allow only a cursory inspection on sale day.

You will want to know the rules before you go to the auction, and certainly before you bid. If you lack experience, you may also want to bring along a more experienced friend or family member. And above all else, never let your emotions get ahead of your bidding acumen. It is easy to get caught up in a bidding war, but falling prey to that common mistake could cause you to overspend. Never fall in love with a particular vehicle, and always remember there will be another one right behind it – just waiting for you to bid.


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Buying a car from an #auction is not the same as buying a vehicle from your local dealer… Read more:

— Products shown: Buy Fee $299 For All Auction Vehicles.

Posted by on Monday, September 18, 2017


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