Auto auctions allow buyers to purchase used, second-hand or salvage cars through a bidding process, which usually leads to buying them at lower prices than buying at a dealership. Most car auctions are usually only open to car dealers but there are several car auction services, which present the bid on the buyer’s behalf. Moreover, they will take care of all the bidding work for you, preventing you the hassle of attending actual auctions and getting into bidding wars.
Below, we have listed a few guidelines that can help you make the best car purchase decision.
Figure Out Your Budget:
- Always remember you need to know how much you can realistically pay to buy a car at an auction. Before you even step at a car auction service or an auction building, have a budget range in mind — and then stick to it. It is very thrilling to see a huge plethora of great-looking cars in the market, but the worst thing you can do is bust your budget when buying one and then later regretting it.
Generally, cars sold at auctions are there because they have mechanical issues, have high mileage or have had past accidents. Your goal to buy a car at an auction should be to get a vehicle at a price below market value — which is essentially what auctions are for.
Also keep in mind that if you got a great car for a great price, it might need a bit of repairs or some cosmetic work done. Sometimes, sedans or luxury vehicles can require repairs ranging from $300 to $2,000. Make sure your budget can cover the added cost when you purchase a car.
- Buying a car at an auction may come cheaper than the market value, but it still remains a huge investment. Once you have narrowed down your budget, it is time to take a look at the type of cars that you can afford and that can give you the best value for your money.
Go online and even to car retailers and learn about your preferred cars’ wholesale and retail prices. Then find out if these cars have common issues and how much their repair costs. CarMD offers detailed information about the common types of car repairs, which vehicle has the lowest frequency of repairs and which have the lowest cost of repair. For example, in 2017, CarMD reported that the lowest average repair cost belonged to 2012 Mazda 5 at just $109.30.