Did you know that there are over 3.5 million vehicles deemed total-losses each year in the United States? According to the Insurance Auto Auctions, Inc. (IAA), this number continues to grow year after year. There are many reasons these vehicles are classified as total-losses and these types of vehicles could prove to be a “diamond in the rough” for many buyers once they understand a little more about these vehicles and the purchasing process.
A salvage title is a form of vehicle title branding. A vehicle is classified as salvage for many reason such as it’s been in an accident (natural, such as a flood, or man-made, like a car wreck) and the insurance company considers it a total-loss (usually this is when the damage to the vehicle exceeds approximately 75% of the value of the car), it was stolen, repossessed or perhaps the owner did not renew the vehicle’s title. Every state, province or territory has their own set of criteria for this classification. eRepairables.com, a leading salvage vehicle selling site, provides these other possible reasons a vehicle was deemed salvage or total-loss.
Once deemed a total-loss, the state’s motor vehicle agency will usually then issue a "salvage certificate" to the vehicle, meaning that it cannot be driven, sold or registered in its current condition.
Auto body shops, salvage buyers, car dealers and consumers can all find something to gain from these vehicles at a great price. Body shops may be looking to expand their inventory, consumers may be working on a project or a first time buyer may find a very economical vehicle.
If you do decide to look for a vehicle to rehabilitate, rather than recycle the parts, be sure to check what paperwork each state needs.
Below, you’ll find a list of the top 10 salvage auto auction sites. Keep in mind that each site has different steps to register and purchase so you’ll need to do some initial research into which site offers you the services and vehicles that best meet your needs.
1. Copart www.copart.com/ — Around since 1982, Copart provides vehicle sellers with a full range of remarketing services to process and sell salvage and clean title vehicles to dealers, dismantlers, rebuilders, exporters and, in some states, to end users. They sell vehicles on behalf of insurance companies, banks, financial institutions, charities, car dealerships, fleet operators, vehicle rental companies, as well as vehicles sourced from the general public.
2. IAAI https://www.iaai.com/ — Insurance Auto Auctions, Inc. (AAI) has been one of the leaders in the salvage auto auction industry since 1982. They work with a variety of sellers including insurance companies, dealerships, rental car companies, and fleet lease companies, to facilitate the sale of total-loss vehicles.
3. eRepairables https://erepairables.com/ — Started in 2002, eRepairables.com offers potential buyers access to thousands of salvage and recyclable trucks, motorcycles and cars for sale. They allow both licensed salvage dealers and non-licensed to bid and you can submit your maximum bid and their system will do the rest.
4. RideSafely www.ridesafely.com/ — RideSafely Auto Auction is a salvage vehicle broker that offers used vehicles such as rebuildable cars, SUVs, motorcycles, and trucks with various damages from insurance losses. They also offer inexpensive used cars for sale that carry clean titles such as lease returns, former rental cars, and bank repossessions.
5. Autobidmaster http://www.autobidmaster.com/ — Here you can bid live on more than 130,562 cars, trucks, SUVs, boats, and motorcycles and allows to purchase auction vehicles without a dealer’s license. You can try this site free for 30 days.
6. Salvagebid http://www.salvagebid.com/ — Salvagebid is an online auto auction marketplace that provides the general public access to auctions that were previously only available to licensed auto dealers. They allow a basic membership for free.
7. Getwwa http://getwwa.com/ — Auto Exporters Inc. is a bonded car dealership specializing in salvage cars for sale. They have a variety of rebuildable cars, trucks, SUVs, and motorcycles with a range of damages and other types of insurance losses. In addition, they have other vehicles which, in most cases, carry a clean title.
8. Easyexport https://www.easyexport.us/ — ING Solutions LLC is a Registered broker with Copart Auto Auction that provides a large inventory of salvage cars, motorcycles, boats, trucks, trailers, jet skis, ATVs and snowmobiles.
9. Ebay Salvage http://www.ebay.com/bhp/salvage-cars — And last but not least, there is a great selection of inventory of salvage cars and parts on eBay.
10. Traauctions https://www.traauctions.com — Total Resource Auctions is a vehicle remarketing company that specializes in salvage, damaged and inoperable vehicles. Their new website is straight forward and simple to navigate.
By now, you should have enough information to start your search. I welcome your comments and feedback below.