Is Buying Cars in an Online Auction Risky?

By Mike Richards Updated: 05/23/2019 Posted: 06/16/2017

Now more than ever before, consumers have real options when it comes to purchasing a vehicle. It wasn’t long ago when the only way in which one could buy a car was to visit a dealership. This, of course, has numerous drawbacks, not the least of which are the markups and having to haggle with car salespeople.

In recent years, though, much of the car-buying process has moved online. In fact, it’s now possible to purchase a vehicle through an online car auction, something more and more people are doing these days.

Of course, as with any new form of “doing things”, there are many auto-buying skeptics when it comes to online car auctions. They feel like these websites might, in fact, be risky.

While there is some degree of risk involved – as there is with any other kind of auction – this risk can be minimized provided you know what you’re doing. Below, we’re going to explain why online car auctions are not risky, and how you can get an incredible deal on a vehicle by using them.

Online Car Auctions Are Perfectly Safe

Have you ever used a site like Amazon? How about EBay? Online car auctions are really not much different than any of these online retailers – they’re just expressly for the purpose of purchasing vehicles. They provide all the same levels of protection for their users. In fact, some go above in beyond, giving users access to auction specialists who can help with every step of the bidding and purchasing process.

How to Minimize Risk in an Online Car Auction

Really, the only risk involved with using an online car auction to purchase a used or salvage car comes down to you. In order to make sure you’re purchasing a vehicle that’s worth the money you spent on it, you need to be willing to do a little research.

Thankfully, online car auctions make conducting this research incredibly easy. With most any listing you’ll encounter, you’ll have access to the vehicle’s VIN. You can take this VIN number to a third-party site like CarFax in order to request a vehicle history report.

Of course, this does require some investment on your part. However, the investment is eminently worth it. Through the vehicle history report, you should be able to learn everything you need to know about the used or salvage car, determining whether or not it’s worth a bid.

Should you wish to take things a step further, the aforementioned auction specialist comes into play. This individual can, at your request, seek out someone who can conduct an in-person inspection of the vehicle, should you determine it’s necessary.

Online Car Auctions Are Great!

With online car auctions, you have access to all the resources you need to minimize risk in your vehicle-purchasing process. What’s more is that you stand to save thousands of dollars by using these auctions to buy a used car or a salvage car. So, give them a try today, and see why so many other auto buyers are using online car auctions these days!