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Scottsdale Auto Auctions: Buying & Selling

Are you thinking about buying a used car at a Scottsdale auto auction? This article is designed to provide you with the details on how auto auctions work and how they can get you the best deal on a great used car. Specifics may vary from auction to auction; however, the following information includes helpful and important guidelines from which everyone can benefit.

Scottsdale auto auctions are one of the best places to pick up a used car, especially high end luxury cars at a fraction of its original retail price. Have you ever pulled up next to a fully loaded Mercedes at a stop light, glanced over and noticed that the driver is barely out of high school? How could they possibly afford the car payment on that kind of ride? Well, they probably purchased the vehicle at a Scottsdale auto auction and got a great deal.

If you have ever dreamed about owning a high-end luxury car or a customized vehicle loaded with aftermarket parts and accessories, you’ve probably done just that – dreamed about it. Paying retail price for a car like that can put a huge dent in your wallet or your savings account. However, you can get a car like that for much less.

There are many different kinds of Scottsdale auto auctions, but two of the most popular happen to be police confiscated auto auctions and government surplus auto auctions.

Police confiscated auto auctions feature cars that have been seized due to asset forfeiture in addition to surplus vehicles that have been used by the local police department. Police car auctions are one of the best places to pick up a used car. Many people think that the only vehicles available at police car auctions are actual police cars. Well, they’re right – but only partially!

Government auto auctions get their supply from criminals. When someone is convicted of a crime, like drug trafficking, the government can seize their assets, including their vehicle. Bad for the criminals but good for you! Government seized automobiles are usually luxury vehicles – BMW, Cadillac, Mercedes, Infiniti, Lexus – and sometimes you may even come across and exotic import like an Aston Martin, Maserati, Ferrari or even a Lamborghini! Not many people can afford a car like this, but it’s possible if you attend a Scottsdale auto auction.

Government auto auctions may also feature their own surplus vehicles, or those no longer needed. These can be passenger vehicles, decoy cars, heavy equipment or even motorcycles, bicycles and ATVs. Other cars featured at government auctions are retired fleet vehicles. These kinds of automobiles are replaced regularly by their respective agencies and are usually domestic cars with high mileage that have been meticulously maintained. You are much more likely to receive vehicle history with a government-owned and operated vehicle than you are a seized vehicle. Keep this in mind if vehicle history is important to you. However most vehicles can have a carfax report run to check on any potential ownership problems or maintenance issues.

Please remember: Inspecting cars being sold at a police seized car auction is a must! Cars sold at police seized auctions are sold ‘As-Is’ with no warranty or guarantee unless still under manufacturers warranty. In an ‘As-Is’ auction, there is no warranty on the merchandise and the bidder is responsible for removal from the auction location. This means that the bidder must rely on their own inspection and knowledge to make bidding decisions. Some auction houses, however, allow bidder to bring their own mechanic for vehicle inspections.

Regardless of the frequency of a Scottsdale auto auction, you can usually find the event in the local newspaper or published on an online auction site that works with the police departments in your area. The advertisement or listing will give the date, time and place of the auction as well as a synopses of the cars that will be auctioned off. They may also give a date in which interested parties are invited to inspect the cars so that they can make decisions about what to buy and how much to spend.

If you’re in the market for a good deal on a used car, it’s definitely worth your time to see what’s available at your next Scottsdale auto auction.

Deb Weidenhamer is CEO of Auction Systems, the Southwest’s most active auction and appraisal company. Check out our Scottsdale auto auction schedule, or call 800-801-8880 for more information.

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