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Top 3 Sources for Today's Best Vehicle Auctions

Aug 18, 2007
While some people can afford to drive around in $40,000 SUVs, the rest of us have to be a little more cautious about how we spend our automotive money. Finding the cheapest, most reliable vehicles is the priority. Here's where auctions can really come in handy for finding great car deals.

There are a lot of myths that surround car auctions, but the truth is they really can hold some very great car deals. It's all a question of knowing which auctions to attend, how to pre-screen vehicles and when to bid and when to walk away. Some common sense can go a very long way here.

With this in mind, let's go over a basic primer for finding great car deals at auction. Then, we'll take a look at some of the best auctions to consider for locating those great car deals.

Before you go to an auction looking for a car deal, it's important to try and see what types of cars they will have available. Pre-screen the vehicles if possible. Take a look at their stats, such as mileage and maintenance records.

Also, pay attention to how they managed to get into the auction. In addition, it's a very good idea to compare the available information on the cars to actual blue book values. This will help guide on when to bid and when to walk away.

The availability to check out buys before bidding will vary from auction to auction. Most sites, however, will allow for at least some basic pre-screening. Take full advantage of any opportunity to do so. Test drives won't generally be available, so you will likely have to screen based on records and visual cues offered by the cars themselves to find great car deals at auction.

Once you've got a handle on what needs to be done to maximize the possibility of getting great car deals at auction, it's time to find the best auctions out there. There are a few ways you can do this. Let's take a look.

Auction finder sites/programs. These are really nifty tools that help anyone who is looking for great car deals to find auctions in their area. Users need only to purchase the program, punch in their area and the makes and models they're interested in. The program will then search to find available matches within a set geographical area.

Advertised auctions. Many geographical areas have their own advertised auctions. These can range from government auctions to bank-backed auctions. These auctions can be particularly good for finding some great car deals. They will, however, also be the same listed in the auction finder programs, generally. It's just a matter of spotting the ads, doing the research and going.

Dealer auctions: These will fall in line with advertised, sometimes. But these auctions are generally meant for dealers and can really have some great finds.

Getting great car deals at auctions can be done. It's a question of knowing how to find them and how to sort through cars once you do. A bit of elbow grease, however, is generally all it takes to nab a really fantastic deal.
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