5 Essential Things to Know About Car Auctions

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Car auctions are a great place to get a good deal on a used vehicle. There are different types of auctions, including dealers-only that require you to have a dealer license to purchase. If you don’t have a license, government and public auto auctions are where you will have to go to purchase. While it is possible to buy a great car at an auction, there are five essential things you need to know before you make that first purchase.

Understand Payment Options

If you are the winning bidder, you will have to pay for your purchase using cash or a loan you’ve already secured from a lender. If you are using a loan, you will need to pay a deposit when you win, so make sure you verify how much it will be and how it can be paid before you even start bidding.

Set a Budget

Getting into a bidding war can be exhilarating, but it can also lead to you overpaying for a vehicle. Make sure to set a strict budget before you arrive, and most importantly, that you stick to it no matter what.

Be Proactive

It’s no secret that car auctions are often the end of the road for some vehicles. The best way to make sure you don’t purchase a vehicle that has been flooded, totaled or is in some other way not able to be titled is to run a VIN check. There are plenty of smartphone apps that allow you to do this quickly so you know whether to bid on a vehicle or walk away from a potential lemon.

Seller Tricks Abound

Sellers at car auctions know a variety of tricks that can help mask some major engine issues on a vehicle. If you don’t know what those tricks are, talk to your friends and see if they do. If so, have him or her attend the auction with you so you don’t get duped into buying a car with serious problems.

Reconsider Used Car Dealer Options

Used car dealers typically bring cars to auctions when they are unable to sell it directly to a customer or to another dealer. If you are interested in a vehicle that is being sold by a used car dealer, you need to go over everything thoroughly, and make sure you run a VIN check. Otherwise, you might end up paying for a car that isn’t going to be reliable.

If you’ve purchased a vehicle from an auction, let YourMechanic give it a thorough inspection for your peace of mind and safety.


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Rusty

22 years of experience
379 reviews
Rusty
22 years of experience
Dodge Ram 1500 - 75 Point Safety Inspection - Arlington, Texas
This is my fourth time having Rusty come look at my truck. He's always friendly and happy to explain the problems to me rather than just saying something is wrong and it needs to be fixed. He has always done a stellar job and goes above and beyond in service. I would 100% recommend!

Nicholas

10 years of experience
287 reviews
Nicholas
10 years of experience
Saturn Aura - 75 Point Safety Inspection - Fuquay Varina, North Carolina
Arrived on time, was very knowledgeable and professional. Explained everything in details that I could understand. Very pleased with Nicholas!

Chris

15 years of experience
250 reviews
Chris
15 years of experience
Mercedes-Benz C220 - 75 Point Safety Inspection - La Mesa, California
Fantastic! Chris was great. He saved me money. Do not wait. Have Chris come out today and fix your problem.. Thank you Chris.

Kai

13 years of experience
17 reviews
Kai
13 years of experience
Chevrolet Malibu - 75 Point Safety Inspection - Frisco, Texas
Kai was very professional and did a great job for me. He removed the things that I did not need. Very honest and detailed work

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