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Salvage Cars Buyer Tips

What are the Pros and Cons of Salvage Title Cars? Should I go for it?

By Femi Amisu Posted: 01/17/2019

There are multiple reasons why people buy used cars from US auctions. One of them is because of salvage title cars. Salvage title cars are cars with varying degrees of damage as a result of use, accident, weather etc. The damage might just be slight and just a bumper dent, mechanical including engine damage, or accidental which literally makes such a vehicle useful for parts. It’s important to know the pros and cons of salvage title cars if you want one.

The cheap cost of salvage cars attracts a lot of dealers and rightly so because it allows them to maximise their profits after purchasing them for way less and repairing and restoring for not much. However, before you venture into buying salvage cars, it is important to understand fully what you’re getting into. What appears to be a minor front bumper dent might extend farther than you think.

Salvage Car For Sale

What exactly are salvage title cars?

  1. The salvage title is a vehicle branding title which depicts a car that has been damaged or considered a total loss by the insurance company that paid a claim on it.
  2. A vehicle is also considered salvaged when the insurer ascertains that the cost of repair for the said vehicle is excess compared to its market value.
  3. The salvage title is also issued to vehicles with problems that are easy to resolve, or sometimes cars without very minor damage if at all. These “not so damaged salvage titled cars” come at a really low cost and this is the reason why car collectors and dealers invest in them. Nevertheless, experts have recommended that buyers be cautious when purchasing salvage title vehicles, to avoid buying cars with hidden unrepairable damages.  

Further Reading

  1. Buying the Best Used Honda Car for Sale 
  2. How to Choose the Right Used Hyundai for Sale 
  3. Used Ford Car for Sale: How to Choose the Right One 
  4. Everything You Need to Know about Buying Used Cars 

What are the Pros and Cons of Salvage Title Cars?

Pros

  • There Are Salvage Title Cars in Great Condition: As earlier stated, a vehicle that has been deemed a total loss by an insurance company could have been titled salvage because of a minor cosmetic issue. This means that, the vehicle is indeed in good condition. It will just need a little bit of work to fix it completely.
  • Most Affordable: One good thing and one of the major reasons why salvage cars are bought, is the price which is always right. Salvage title cars go for as low as 20-30% less than used clean title cars. Buying salvage will save you a lot more money.
  • Spare Parts: On the other hand, salvage title cars are great for collectors and hobbyists. So even if the vehicle isn’t in great condition, you can disassemble the car. Then make even more money from selling the parts.

Cons

Yes, buying salvage title cars might save you a ton. But there are some not so great sides to it as well.

  1. Insurance Issues

    Getting an insurance company for salvage title cars is challenging. Especially one that’s willing to pay for collision and complete coverage. Insurers find it hard to take on salvage cars. It becomes difficult to tell if the damage was recent or from the previous incidents.

  2. Expensive Repairs

    For some salvage title vehicles, fixing of a little scratch would cost next to nothing. Unfortunately, some others will demand a high cost for fixing. There could also be some underlying damage that wasn’t properly fixed. That would probably rear its head few months after your purchase. In the end, fixing such cars would cost you more than you spent buying the car in the first place.

  3. Rebuilding Doesn’t Change The Title

    If you’re hoping to resell the vehicle and you invest a lot of money in trying to rebuild it, please know that it won’t change the title. Even if you ensure that it’s rebuilt to factory quality, the value will remain lower. Then you’d have spent too much money fixing a vehicle that won’t make half the value from being sold.

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