Buying a salvage car requires a keen eye and a strategic approach. You can’t just select any cheap car from a dealership and expect to strike the best deal. This will only lead to a huge financial loss!
Instead, you must first contact a dedicated bidding platform like cars4.bid. Then, you must evaluate certain factors to ensure the car is ideal for your needs.
Don’t know what these factors are? Well, worry not because this post is all about salvage car buying. Let’s dive in and explore seven things that you should always consider when buying a salvage car!
Table of Contents
1. Car Dealership’s Reputation
There are hundreds, if not thousands, of car dealerships that sell salvage cars. But does that mean you can buy from any of them? No, you should only choose the reputable ones.
A reputable dealership will have ethical practices, accurate vehicle descriptions, and fair dealings. It will maintain complete transparency to ensure you get a reliable and decent vehicle for your money.
You can research a dealership’s reputation by checking reviews and testimonials. Does it have a strong online presence? What are people saying about it? Have you ever heard your friends and relatives talk about it?
Remember that when a business has a good reputation, it cares about what people think and prioritizes customer satisfaction, so there is no risk of fraud and loss.
2. Vehicle History Report
A vehicle history report is a legitimate document about the car’s past. It includes details about accidents, repairs, ownership history, and more. So, when buying a salvage car, it is very important to check this report.
Please note that if a car has been in big accidents or it was sold multiple times in a short period, know that something is awfully wrong with it. Discuss these details with the seller to ensure you are making an informed decision.
3. Physical Inspection
Online websites have indeed made it easy to learn about a product. You can buy anything without having to check it physically. But, since a salvage car can be a risky investment, always do a physical inspection.
If you don’t have the necessary knowledge to check it yourself, ask a trusted professional to come along. He will test all the main systems, including the engine, battery, brakes, exhaust, and suspension.
4. Repair Costs
Salvage cars usually have both minor and major damages. You should expect to spend some money on its restoration. However, the question is, how much will you be spending on it?
Use the vehicle history report and inspection report to calculate the repair costs. Then, compare it with the sale price. If the repair costs are more than what you bought it for, the deal might not be worth it.
5. Car Insurance
Getting insurance for a salvage car is more complex than for a standard one. Since it has a history of damage, insurance companies may have different policies and restrictions. The premiums may also vary with the car’s condition.
So, it’s best to research and communicate with insurance providers beforehand to understand coverage options.
6. Power of Negotiation
This is not something you need to consider – but something you should be aware of. Salvage cars don’t have the same value as new or old ones. They are damaged cars that people can buy for cheap and restore.
So, as a buyer, you can always negotiate the price. Ask the seller to go through the vehicle history report and lower the price accordingly. If that doesn’t work, show him the inspection report (created by your trusted professional) as evidence of the damages.
We also recommend checking out a few more dealerships to get a better idea of the market price for your chosen salvage car. This will help you conduct further negotiations.
7. Resale Value
Profitability should always be considered when investing money in big things. Your salvage car may not have a good resale price in its current condition, but you can always renovate it and sell it for a better price.
So, research the market and find the values of restored salvage cars. Then, subtract the repair costs from the estimated selling price to calculate the profit. If it sounds good, go ahead and seal the deal.
However, if you are making little to no profit, it’s best to consider another salvage car. We recommend this even if you plan to use the car yourself and don’t want to resell it. This is because you never know when you might need urgent money. It’s better to be safe than sorry.