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How To Buy Cheap Cars

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

How To Buy Cheap Cars

Thomas Martin
January 23, 2007

There are a number of seized car auctions held in various places every month or at least quarterly. Usually, these special auctions are sponsored or put by the federal, state or local governments, and in some cases by law enforcement agencies.

There are a variety of ways on how the seized cars were put to the possession of the government. The most common and the most logical reason or explanation would be that these cars were previously owned by bad people, or those who violated laws or breached regulations.

Sometimes, cars sold at government auctions are actually old cars of government offices, which might have bought newer cars to replace the older ones.

People frequent government seized car auctions because they want to buy used or second hand cars at bargain prices. Indeed, they do get discounts, but buying seized cars could also be a gamble in itself.

Here are some helpful guidelines or tips on how you could effectively buy seized cars at government auctions.

1. To find such auctions, you should do a little leg work. Make inquiries or ask your local government about any auction that would take place. Check out the newspapers for postings and announcements.

2. Do your homework. Before buying seized cars at government auctions, it would advisable that you first do a little run down or research about the car you are planning to buy. By this, it means you should define your preferences and needs by knowing exactly the type of car you want and at what price range.

3. Research or ask experts about the value of the car you are eyeing at the government auction to determine whether the tag price is reasonable. Also try to know the seized vehicle's vehicle identification number or VIN and the mileage. The auction's administrators should know more about these facts and should readily give them to you.

4. Most of the seized car auctions run a preview of the seized cars for sale at least two days before the actual auction. This is the time when you can get really close to fully inspecting the vehicle.

5. When buying seized cars at government auctions, inspect the car very carefully. If you are not that familiar or if you are not really an expert in scrutinizing and eye-testing second-hand cars, try to bring in an expert or a mechanic at the auction. By doing so, the inspection would be accurate and you can be sure the price you would be paying, if ever you win the bidding process, is worth it.

6. Government auctions are still auctions. That means, people go there and bid against each other. If you want a seized car badly, chances are, there are also other people out there who also want the car so badly that they are willing to bid higher to make sure they get what they want. In cases like that, do not overbid. You might end up buying overpriced used car. That would not be really practical.

7. Prices for seized cars sold at government auctions vary and change from time to time depending on the currently winning bid. Maintain your focus, and eye for other cars, if your initially preferred car would be a little overpriced.

Overall, government auctions for seized cars are attractive and practical events help people acquire cars at discounted and practical prices. Just be sure you keep your head focused and thinking analytically while being immersed in the process.

Auctions can be a little thrilling most of the time, but in the end, people who buy at real bargains are the real winners.


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