What is Salvage title? Buyer Tips

Tips to Find Cheap Cars at Online Auctions

By Mike Richards Updated: 05/23/2019 Posted: 10/16/2015

No one likes the idea of overspending on a vehicle, but many people simply don’t do enough research before buying. They get themselves into a situation where they are spending more than they should because don’t know that there are other options out there.

One of the most common scenarios is someone looking for cheap vehicles immediately turning to a used car dealership. With many of the used dealerships, the prices will still be high enough that you will have to go on a financing plan. This means you are paying interest, and the idea of buying cheap vehicles is out the window. So how to find cars online with good options?

Instead of going this route, why not take the time to see what auctions have to offer? You can often find some great cheap vehicles through auctions. However, it’s important that you follow a few tips to make sure you are getting the best deal.

Find a Legitimate Auction

The most important thing to consider is the auction itself. Are you working with a high quality, legitimate auction house with a good reputation? You have to do some research on the auction house before you choose to buy through them. While many are completely safe, you do not want to fall for an unscrupulous company that takes your money and runs or that isn’t forthcoming with information about the vehicles they are auctioning.

A good option is to work with a third party company that deals with the auctions for you. They will already know the good from the bad and can ensure that you are only buying through quality sites. Again, you will need to check out the third party company to ensure their quality and legitimacy.

A common approach for doing well at auction is to do your research, and it all starts here. Make sure they have a working phone number and contact information. You may even want to get in touch with them to learn more about the process before you consider spending any money. If they don’t answer the phone or email, or they are not forthcoming with their answers, then it is generally best to avoid them.

Is It Really Cheap?

One of the great things about buying at auction is the allure of cheap vehicles. It’s possible to save several thousand dollars, and sometimes more, on the cost of a vehicle. However, before you buy these cheap vehicles, you really need to make sure that they are worth it.

Some of the vehicles that are very low priced need to have a substantial amount of work done to them. It is your job to learn more about the vehicle and what types of repairs it will need before it can get back on the road. If the cost of the repairs, and other incidentals, seems like it will still be a good purchase, then you can bid on it. However, don’t let the cheap vehicles cloud your judgment when buying even if it your favorite model of Toyota (Acura), Ford, Jeep, Nissan, Mazda, BMW or Dodge.

If you can, get a vehicle report for the car or truck that interests you. This will provide you with some additional information about the vehicle’s history and why it is at auction in the first place. Did the original owner default on a loan? Is the vehicle a salvage title, and if it is, why? All of this information can help you make a better overall decision when you are trying to find cheap vehicles that are worth your time.

Do Not Overbid

This is a problem many first-time auction buyers have. They find a vehicle that they love, and they find that even with the repairs, it is still well within their budget. They place a bid on the vehicle and hope that they win. Then, someone else with the same idea places a bid, pushing the price higher.

Before the buyer knows it, the cheap vehicle is now at a price point that’s higher than their budget will really allow. It’s always a better idea to stay as far away as possible from any potential bidding wars that might erupt over a vehicle. Increasing the bid, so long as it is within your budget, is fine. You simply don’t want to get to the point where your judgment is clouded simply because you really want to own the vehicle.

Consider the Location of the Vehicle

This is another thing that many first time online auction buyers forget. The vehicle that you are buying through the auction could be in another state. You have to think about how you will get the vehicle from its location to your location.

You will have to ship the vehicle, and that is something that you need to factor into your budget at the start. Otherwise, it’s just another way that the supposedly cheap vehicle keeps going up in price.

As long as you shop smartly and are willing to put in the research, you will find that it is quite possible to find great cheap vehicles through online auctions. Though they might still need some repairs when you get them, saving through an auction can be a huge boon to your budget.

Explore our Vehicle Auctions, as well as finding more information about How These Auctions Work.