LOS ANGELES, Jan. 13, 2014 /PRNewswire-iReach/ -- Online auto auctions are some of the best places to get quality used vehicles for cheap. There are plenty of websites out there that let you search and bid in these auctions, making the whole process a lot easier. Since some of these sites are unreliable or even straight up scams, it's best to know something about how they work prior to using them. This article will:
Give you a rundown on what different types of used cars auctions are and how they work.
Vanish some myths about auctions.
Explain why certain sites should be avoided.
Provide information about the most reliable auction sites on the web.
What are government and police auctions?
Legally, government agencies must open any surplus or seized items for sale to the public. That means that whenever the police or customs has seized vehicles, whenever the military has surplus car parts, or whenever a home goes into foreclosure due to loan default, those items and properties are open to be bought at auction by you. Since they must be sold, you can often find quality items, like cars, trucks, and other vehicles, for way less than their usual market price.
What are Fleet Lease, Bank Owned or a Repossessed car auctions?
Another great source of buying a good quality car from an auction are the auctions, which sell fleet lease cars, or bank owned cars or repossessed cars. We will define all of them for you here:
Bank of financial institution cars are the cars returned back to the banks or financial institution as a lease trade in or simply because people are not able to make payments on their car loans. Usually banks and financial institutions are auctioning such vehicles
Fleet Lease cars are the cars which been owned by companies for business purposes such as Rental companies cars, or construction companies cars or taxi cars, or any type of cars used for business. Companies at an interval of 5 years usually change these cars and they sell them at auto auctions.
Repossessed cars are the cars which been taken from people which where delinquent on their car loan payments. Dealers or Repo Companies are required to sell the repo cars at auto auctions.
What are Tow Auctions?
Several hundred thousand vehicles are impounded in each city every year. Of these, around two-thirds are redeemed by the owners, but the rest of the cars become city property and are divested through public car auctions.
How do I find car auctions?
Government, police, tow, bank, repo, fleet lease auctions happen all across the continent, at many different times, and by many different methods. That being said, you do not need to pay to get access to auction listings. Federal, state, and local governments and banks, financial institutions and repo companies list all their auction information online for free.
Is it actually possible to get a brand new Mercedes for $50?
Sure it's possible, but it's about as possible as that brand new Mercedes being a flying car and take to to the moon. Finding vehicles and other items at a fraction of their market price, however, is not just possible - it's very likely. Since these items are acquired at no cost, like seized items, or at a considerable discount, like surplus items, the agencies selling them just want to get whatever money they can for them. The prices vary from auction to auction, but every one will have cars priced way below market cost.
What's the "secret" to getting the best deals from these car auctions?
Sorry to break it to you, but there are no amazing, brilliant, fix-all secrets to getting the best deals, and any site that says otherwise is just trying to coax you into spending money to become a member on their site. Your best friend when looking for deals is your common sense. Use that and research the market value of the vehicle you're buying, and you'll be cruising in a quality vehicle in no time, with minimal impact on your wallet. It may be impossible to get a full, independent inspection on an auction vehicle, but it is even more important than usual to get a vehicle history report, the most important step to protect you when buying any used car!
How can I tell if an auction site is unreliable or a scam?
To save you the time of going through such a hassle, we have personally checked the reliability of a number of auction sites by buying memberships, and the only one that we would recommend to you is Repokar.com. Most other sites we found, even those recommended by other supposed authorities, turned out to be either a waste of money or an outright scam. Some charged $40 a month to show eBay listings. Others had actually falsified legally-required contact information for their website domains, and were impossible to contact by phone or email. A few were legitimate, but charged too much and offered too little, and none had a free trial.
So, we strongly recommend you stick with Repokar.com, which we have personally verified to be a great site with Free Membership for buyers. But if you find another site that seems promising and want to check it out, be sure to:
Try contacting them before giving them any money. Having a working phone number doesn't guarantee a site is good, but not having one is sure sign to stay away.
Check them out on the Better Business Bureau. I would avoid any company with a rating below A-.
Repokar.com lists auctions from federal agencies, banks, insurance companies, fleet lease companies. You can find a list of every state's car auction inventory here, and you can do a search for auction information by seller type, buy make and model and by city and state.
Where should I look for vehicle auctions?
There is a wide variety of auction sites on the web. Repokar.com and eBay Motors are some of the best options available to you.
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