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Old 04-15-2011, 11:52 PM   #31 (permalink)
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War_Wagon -

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Originally Posted by War_Wagon View Post
Mwah ha ha I can't give away my secrets! Just kidding, I used to work at the biggest wholesale (dealer only) car auction in western Canada for 10 years. I don't anymore, but I still go there every week. I saw the Insight buried in amongst the SUVs and F350s, and thought to myself "I bet no one here will even know what that car is." And I was right. There were 600 car dealers at the auction that day, and there was only one other person that looked at it and bid on it when it went across the auction block, if it hadn't been for him I probably would have got it for $1000.

I'm not usually in the right place at the right time, but when it does happen it usually works out pretty well!
Man oh man oh man, what a deal! I have always wanted to do the car auction thing, but I think you need a "nose" for a good deal. I think I would get snookered. My only "grace" is that I think I would go for the boring-car that (hopefully) no one wants.

CarloSW2

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Old 04-17-2011, 11:28 PM   #32 (permalink)
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CarloSW2, auctions definitely aren't for everyone. But if you look at the right things you can score a good deal. Working at one for 10 years helped me with knowing what the "right things" are. My quick starter advice , for what it's worth, would be this:

1. Never ever buy a car at your first auction. There is a lot going on, so go to a few and just watch how everything works, and learn what your buy fees & other fees will be. Some places have monster fees, that $2000 car was a great deal until you see the 15% buyers fee on it.

2. See if arbitration is available on the vehicle you are interested in. Since you usually can't test drive a car at an auction, some auctions offer an arbitration period on certain cars, meaning if you take the car out and the transmission falls out in the parking lot, you might not necessarily be stuck with it. But find that out first, and see what their policy entails (ie what is covered, what is the minimum amount the repair must be before they will get the seller involved in covering it etc)

3. Look for units at the auction that have come from a finance company or a bank as a repo. Those companies usually have no choice but to auction their cars off, so they are more likely to be decent than ones brought to the auction by car dealers (hey if it was good, the dealer would sell it on their lot or wholesale it to a broker, if it's at the auction it's generally kinda fishy).

Just my $.02, but if nothing else it can be a fun way to spend a few hours.

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