By: Gov Auctions | 25 September 2012

Bidding on an Online Auto Auction

Online auto auctions offer an effective way to snap up a bargain on a vehicle no matter where it is, but remember to keep in mind how you are going to be able to pick up any purchases you make. The following is a brief look at some of the other main considerations to keep in mind when bidding on an online auto auction.

Research vehicles first

One of the biggest advantages of car auctions online is that you have a little more time to research the various vehicles being auctioned, so take advantage of this extra time and make sure you know everything there is to know about any vehicle you are considering bidding on. Look carefully at any photos posted, spend time reading about the make and model, and read any reviews written by those who have owned the same type of vehicle before. By researching carefully, you will greatly increase your chances of finding something decent.

Set a budget and stick to it

Some people get swept up in the excitement of auctions and end up spending more money than they can afford, so to prevent this happening to you, make sure you have established a budget long before the auction starts. This will make it easy to know when it is time for you to stop bidding, and will help keep you focused on options you can actually afford.

Watch it closely

Online auto auctions usually take a significant amount longer than regular car auctions, allowing you to take your time with your bidding. However, as it gets closer to the cut-off time for bids, you need to be watching the auction closely, as it is often the last hour or so that is most important. If you are watching carefully, you will be ready if someone tries to outbid you at the last moment, and only if you are watching closely are you much chance of scoring any big bargains.

Payment methods

Paying for an online purchase is generally the same no matter what you are buying, and online auctions are no different, with credit the most popular form of accepted payment. However, make sure you know what form of payment will be accepted before you start bidding, as this may help you avoid disappointment later on if you win the bid but cannot pay in the form that is required.

Don’t just send money

Never send money to anyone for a vehicle – or any other major purchase – before you have physically seen it and have all the proper documentation in order stipulating that it is in fact now yours. It is relatively common for people to get caught out by scammers and frauds posing as car sellers online.

Online auctions have become an increasingly popular way for people to buy everything from houses to sporting equipment, and if you are looking for a vehicle, there are few better ways to get a decent car at a good price than to take part in one.