How to Buy Your Next Vehicle at a US Car Auction

How to Buy Your Next Vehicle at a US Car Auction (2023)

Did you know you can buy your next car using insurance auto auctions in the United States? Auto auctions are a terrific way to get a good deal on a vehicle, and they offer a wide variety of cars, trucks, and SUVs to choose from. However, to get the most out of an auto auction, it is important to know what to expect.

This article will provide all the information you need about car auctions in the US, including getting a car from insurance auto auctions, registering to bid, and shipping the car home.Whether you’re looking for your next family vehicle or want to save money on your current ride, read on for what you need to know about buying cars at auto auctions in the US!

Why Buy at an Auto Auction?

The biggest advantage of buying at an auto auction is the potential to save some major money. By going directly to the source and cutting out middlemen, you can often find vehicles priced far below what you would pay elsewhere.

This is especially true if you buy from auctions specializing in insurance auto auctions, which offer cars that were previously leased or owned by people who defaulted on their bills.

How to Register

You must first register with the auction house to participate in a car auction. This usually requires a valid government-issued ID and proof of address to get approved. You will also need to provide payment information and sign a bidder agreement.

Of course, each auction house will have different requirements. Some also require a deposit before you can start bidding.

Choosing the Right Auction

There are a variety of car auctions in the US, so it is important to choose the right one for you. Be sure to consider the type of car you are looking for and research the types of vehicles that each auction offers. Some auctions specialize in specific makes and models, while others provide vehicles from various sources, such as insurance auto auctions.

Do your research to find an auction that offers what you need, along with great customer service and competitive starting bids.


Once you are registered, you can start participating in the bidding. The auctioneer will announce each car as it comes up, and you can start bidding on any that interest you. Make sure to review the terms of each auction before placing a bid, as they may vary from one auction house to another.

Also, online auction companies sometimes will only allow you to pre-bid on a vehicle, if you don’t have a premium account. This is just another nuance to keep in mind when deciding where you want to bid and how much money you would like to bid.


If you win your bid, you must arrange for the car to be shipped to its destination, if needed. The shipping cost will depend on the size and weight of the vehicle, as well as where it is going and how it is transported. So, factor in the shipping cost when deciding how much to bid.

What to Know Before Attending an Auto Auction

Car auctions are a great way to get a good deal on your next vehicle, but there are some things you should be aware of before attending.

  • Ensure you read and understand the auction house’s terms on deposits and refunds.
  • Inspect each car thoroughly before bidding, as they are sold “as is.”
  • Have your finances sorted out before the auction, so you can place bids quickly.
  • Research the estimated market value of each vehicle.

SCA Auto Auction

At SCA, a 100-percent online salvage auction, they have 200+ vehicle storage locations across North America that house their inventory of over 300,000 vehicles. These vehicles come from various sources like dealerships, rental car companies, leasing companies, insurance companies, and more. They are definitely a leader in the insurance auto auction industry. SCA works closely with all sorts of businesses, including independent sellers.They hold online auctions each week!

Their innovative website lets members bid on cars through pre-bid or live bids anytime and anywhere. They carry all kinds of vehicles, from project cars to classics to late and early model trucks and exotic cars. Why buy from a dealer when you could get it straight from the source and save money? SCA is committed to providing their customers with the best possible car buying experience.

Abingdon Auto Auction

Abingdon Auto Auction is a family-owned business in Virginia that has been around for years. It’s members of the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) and the Virginia Independent Automobile Dealers Association (VIADA). They offer many vehicles, including classics and luxury models, at reasonable prices. And their staff is always polite and courteous!

Norwalk Auto Auction

Norwalk Auto Auction has been operating since 1979 and is independently owned and operated. They offer complete run lists on their website and online simulcast bidding. Each week, they host GSA internet and dealer sales that feature major car dealerships from the LA area and Orange County.


Barrett-Jackson is home to the world’s top collector car auctions, boasting 50 years of experience and events often televised on the History channel. If you’re a serious car fan, their live auctions in Scottsdale, Arizona, Palm Beach, Las Vegas, and Houston are something you should check out.

But even if attending an auction in-person isn’t possible for you at the moment, they still offer many great online resources for buying cars and event tickets.

Buying a Car at an Auction

Auto auctions are a great way to get an excellent deal on your next vehicle, and are simply fun to attend and participate in. But, before attending an auction, make sure you research the estimated market value of each car you are interested in and understand the auction house’s terms and conditions. You’ll want to have your finances sorted out before bidding, so you can place bids quickly and without going over budget! Finally, we hope you enjoy your next car hunt, and wish you the best of luck with your bids.