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When it comes to finding a car that meets your specific needs, the average auto shop may not always be able to fulfill your desires. That’s where car auctions come in, as they are able to provide a variety of vehicles from different periods to those looking for older cars or newer options.

However, there are several things you need to do to make sure you are getting a fair deal and that you’ll be able to use the car for as long as you need it for. Here are tips to follow for buying a car at auctions.

Create a budget

Buying a car, whether used or brand new, requires setting aside a specific amount of money that allows you to afford it for as long as possible. In addition to the money you’ll need to put down for the initial purchase and the maintenance checks, you’ll need some cash set aside for repairs, especially if the car of your choosing is a little seasoned.

The kind of car you’re looking at in an auto auction may also determine how much money you’ll need, as vans, trucks, SUVs, and other larger vehicles will most likely need more money for repairs than sedans or other smaller alternatives. This money comes in handy if your prospects have been in accidents in the past, a history of engine problems, or a high mileage.

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Educate yourself on cars

Some of you may be looking for your very first car and are looking for a deal that will take less out of your wallet than if you were looking for options on a dealership lot. While the website for these auctions may promote guarantees, knowing how cars are supposed to work will help you figure out if you’re dealing with a scammer.

You can talk to your parents or a friend who owns a car about how they were able to get a deal, as well as what questions they asked the people selling them the car to ensure sure they weren’t cheated. It helps more if you talk to some who specifically got their cars from an auction, as they can tell you how to find your car while searching online or at the lot.

Research the car’s history

Once you’ve narrowed down your choices, knowing the physical details about the cars will make it easier to decide which ones suit your needs. You may be leaning between a sedan and an SUV, depending on what kind of environment you’re going to be driving, but there may be an instance when you will need this car to take you through conditions they’re not normally suited for.

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The auctioneers may tell you that the inside of the car has been serviced on a regular basis despite the vehicle being 10 to 15 years old, and they might be right. However, going to the Kelley Blue Book, Carfax, and other websites to check the car’s history will bring you comfort whether you end up liking the results or not.

Consider the lifespan

Your use for your auctioned vehicle will make a big difference in which one will be the best purchase. You might need a truck for the weekend trips with friends and family in the outdoors that can carry your camping, fishing, and hunting equipment. Some of you may need a regular car that can handle the harder-to-clean messes that result from such activities.

These factors can affect how long your auctioned car will last going forward. How frequent you use this new car will also determine if the purchase is worth your time. This car should last for a few years if you use it more often for trips to the city or the outdoors, so you should make a purchase that is suited for a lifespan so that your wallet stays full.

Bring cash

It’s just as important for the auctioneers to be able to trust you as it is for you to trust them. In order for you to show that you’ll be able to afford the auctioned vehicle now and in the future, you’ll need to bring cash with you for your purchase. Certain auctions only accept certain credit cards for putting down a bid, so you’ll need to research this before you go.

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You will also need to show proof of insurance when you bring your cash, though there’s also the option of an approved loan if you end up winning your bid. Those looking to use credit cards will have to consider taxes and fees for titles and registration so that they have extra money.

Keep these tips in mind so that you feel comfortable at an auction and find the right car.

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