Auto auctions are a method of selling vehicles based on an auction system. Auto auctions can be found in most countries and are usually exclusive to licensed automobile dealers.

Begin by walking completely around the vehicle for a “visual” inspection. Upon completion of this, look closely at any areas that may have damage. Determine if the vehicle’s exterior meets your standards and expectations Open the trunk, hood compartment and all doors. Confirm that all these items open and close properly. Inspect the interior of the vehicle to ensure that it meets your standards and expectations. Start the engine and let it idle while listening for any noises, squeaks or rattles. If anything sounds unusual, investigate until you are satisfied and have enough information to make a buying decision. While the vehicle is idling, engage the transmission to confirm that it engages in both “drive” and “reverse”. If the opportunity exists, take the car for short test drive within the time parameters, designated area, and speed limit on the vehicle auction property. If you are not sure what these guidelines are, go to front counter and make your examination is complete, utilize all the data gathered, research the market and book values, and determine your target acquisition price. Make sure to factor in the auction fees when setting a target price. Always know your target price range before you enter the “live” auction.

Things to know when bidding at an auction:

Above the auctioneer there is a light system. Make sure you look to see what light(s) are illuminated and that you understand what they mean.

Always know your target price range before you enter the “live” auction lane.

Get in the auction lane early and listen to the auctioneer. They talk fast, and it takes a while to get in sync and understand what they are saying.

There is usually a “ring man” in each auction lane. They are there to identify bidders and help them get the vehicle they are bidding on. Never bid unless you are sure that you are bidding on the right car and understand the amount the auctioneer is chanting. If you have any doubt what is being said, stop the ring man (or auctioneer), and ask them to clarify the bid amount. Once they are aware that you are having trouble keeping up with the bidding, they will make sure you understand subsequent bids.

Good Luck and have fun.