Finding a great deal on cars isn’t always easy. It requires scouring the internet and driving around used car lots, test driving a variety of cars, and waiting patiently until the right one shows up. 

During your research, you might find well-priced cars that are labeled as “salvage titles.” These vehicles are typically low-priced for the condition and miles. You can find even better prices on these cars by going to a salvage car auction

Before attending that auction, you’ll want to know a thing or two about how they work. If you’re prepared, you’ll have a better chance of finding an excellent deal. Here’s what you should know about salvage car auctions. 

What is a salvage car? 

When a vehicle is totalled and repaired, it’s given a “salvage title.” This means that although it’s been in an accident, a mechanic has made the appropriate repairs so that it’s road-ready again. Vehicles sent to salvage car auctions may have also experienced damage from weather, such as a hail storm or flooding. 

Many people feel uneasy about buying a salvage car because they’re worried that the structure of the vehicle will no longer be safe since it’s been in an accident. However, salvaged vehicles can be just as strong and reliable as used cars with clean titles, as long as you inspect it to make sure it’s in good shape. 

The benefits of attending salvage car auctions 

The primary benefit of buying from a salvage car auction is the discounts. Cars with a salvage title typically go for incredible discounts, even as high as 80 percent off the market value. This gives you access to vehicles that you might not otherwise be able to afford. 

Participation requirements 

Most states require that you have a dealer license to participate in salvage car auctions. Therefore, everyday individuals cannot participate unless they apply for a dealer license. 

You can get around this problem by working with a broker with a dealer license. They can participate in the auction on your behalf, which is extra advantageous to you since they know more about getting good deals. They’ll help you craft a good bidding strategy as well as handle vehicle inspections, contract negotiations, and more. 

Types of auctions 

There are two types of salvage car auctions: in-person and online. An in-person car auction looks very similar to the kinds of auctions you see on television. Cars are organized in a warehouse where potential buyers can peruse the merchandise. Sometimes, the auction is silent and other times it’s led by a fast-talking auctioneer. 

Online auctions are a little more difficult to navigate. First off, you need a deposit that represents a tenth of your total bidding power. After this is set up, you’ll look at the online merchandise to find the perfect cars for you. 

Working with a broker or agent can help you establish the right deals and submit a since bidding price. The highest bidder will win, but you don’t want to overpay, especially because salvage vehicles can require extra work when you take it home. 

Getting a good deal 

If you want to find a good deal at auction, doing your homework is critical to your success. Salvage cars come in all different sizes, shapes, and qualities. You never want to pay over market value or purchase a car that has not had adequate workmanship. 

Finding out what happened to the vehicle is also essential. For example, you don’t want to buy a car that had flood damage because it often leads to serious problems down the road, even if it was repaired. 

Anyone can find a great deal at a salvage car auction as they do their homework and are familiar with the process. Use these tips to help you succeed.