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What You Need to Watch Out For at Public Car Auctions


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Every public auction has an inspection period when you can view the vehicles and maybe even start them (though you will not be able to test drive them). Be sure to attend the inspection period and to note down the vehicle identification number of any car you are interested in. Then you are well-advised to track down the car’s vehicle history report on Carfax. This will tell you the car’s ownership and service history, and also alert you to previous accidents or problems that the car has experienced in the past. Of course, it will also assure you whether the car has a clean title. But using Carfax to obtain the vehicle history report will require you to pay a fee to use the service.

Another thing you can do is to check the car’s trade-in value with a Kelley Blue Book. (You can also use the website at ) It is highly advisable to do so in order for you to determine your bid properly. Note that your bid is not the sole amount of money you will end up paying to get a car at an auction. You must take into account the registration fee you will pay to join the auction. In addition, take note that any winning bid you make on a vehicle is not the same as the full price you will pay for it. You must also add a buyer’s premium, which can range from 5% to 10% of the bid you made.

Also consider that a car at an auction is sold “as is” with no warranty. You will have to get a used car extended warranty for it. The cost of the warranty may have to be added to your total costs.

Since the cars are sold without warranty, you will be hard pressed to get any sort of recompense if you should have problems with your purchase. It is not possible for you to simply return the car or get your money back. There are no guarantees offered for the vehicles sold at public car auctions. That is what selling them “as is” means.

If you are thinking of buying a car at a public auction, learn more about how to find great deals at auto auctions . Visit


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