Skip the Clearance Sales and Use a Dealer Auction Instead

By Mike Richards Updated: 05/23/2019 Posted: 09/13/2017

Go ahead and grab your latest newspaper or Sunday inserts and take a look at the many cars for sale. You’ll see ads from dealerships – both used and new – and you may wonder how they are going to move so much inventory. They probably wonder the exact same thing, and it is why car dealers of all kinds so often have clearance sales, big sales events, and all kinds of appealing promotions. Before you succumb to their offers, though, consider using an auto dealer auction instead.

The Advantages of the Dealer Auction

How many cars do you think a larger dealership can make immediately available to you? Typically, the major sites have hundreds, and sometimes over 1,000 vehicles on hand. Smaller businesses have a few dozen or so. Either way, these figures are truly nothing when you compare the number of options available at any given moment through an online dealer auction. For example, it is not unusual for one auction site to have more than 200 thousand vehicles at any time.

What this means is that you would have to visit around 100 to 200 enormous dealerships to gain access to that many choices, or just sit in your living room and browse through the dealer auction website to find your perfect vehicles.

There is also the matter of the pricing. A dealership, as we just noted, holds a lot of inventory on hand. This means they need to move those cars fast, but they also have top profit from each sale. This is a tough job, and yet they are not all that likely to budge on the prices offered.

This is because they typically can’t afford to drop prices much farther than they may already be. A dealership has to buy from the manufacturer, from other sellers and even from auctions. They have to keep cars properly documented, pay for insurances and maintenance, and offer the vehicles in prime condition on a large lot. That is an expensive endeavor, and they typically pass a lot of those costs on to you, the buyer. It is why you might quickly peruse a dealer auction website, see a car listing as a “buy now” price of around $6k but see that a dealership will be asking around $9 or $10k for the same car.

Do you want to dodge this expense? Then you can skip the deals, clearance sales and all of the other special offers and head to a dealer auction instead.

How to Gain Access

While you do need a dealer license to enter any dealer auction, there are now websites that have such licenses and do all of the bidding, buying and paperwork for you instead. You don’t have to become a licensed dealer to gain access, but you can start buying at those bargain basement prices that dealers enjoy. Though it may initially seem easier to head to the nearest lot to start looking for cars, it is faster, more affordable and much more comfortable to just shop in online auctions instead.