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photo of a showroom to buy and ship a car from an auction

How to Buy a Car at Auction: And Ship It

Auctions offer a great way to find the perfect car for you – whether it’s something luxurious or just a basic driver. However, the bidding and purchasing process to buy a car at auction can seem overwhelming to those who are new to the idea. This guide will walk you through how auctions work, what tips can help make your purchase successful, and why using an auto transport service might be the best option. All in all, taking part in an auction is an exciting opportunity that could also save you money on your dream car!

Understanding Car Auctions

For those interested in purchasing a vehicle, participating in a vehicle auction can be an exciting and cost-effective experience. There is no one type of auction that suits all bidders – different auctions come with their own features and procedures. From open public auctions to exclusive events reserved for industry professionals, here is an overview of the most commonly encountered forms of auto auctions:

Public Auctions

For those seeking a good deal on a used car, attending a nearby auction may offer just the solution. With these events open to all individuals, potential buyers can find options such as bank repossessions, government fleet vehicles and private party sales. To buy a car at auction, taking advantage of an auction is an excellent way to get the car you’ve been wanting at an unbeatable price.

Dealer Auctions

Licensed car dealers and other professionals from the industry are welcome to attend exclusive auctions -the so called “dealer auctions”. These events often feature late-model cars which have been traded in or repossessed. Regrettably, members of public cannot take part in these occasions, however some dealers may grant access to their patrons or offer proxy bidding services.

Online Auctions

Rather than having to attend a live vehicle auction, users now have the option of participating in an auction from the comfort of their own homes. eBay Motors and Bring a Trailer are two popular websites that offer this type of convenience. Through these sites, individuals can peruse an extensive selection of vehicles to place bids on at their discretion.

Specialty Auctions

For those in search of something special, the path may lead to a specialized auction. From classic cars to exotic rides and heavy equipment, these events tend to attract collectors and fans who are on the lookout for hard-to-find vehicles.

Preparing for the Auction

Going to a car auction can be an exciting yet intimidating experience. To get the most out of it, here are some tips that will help you prepare for the day: First, do your research ahead of time.

Research To Buy A Car At Auction

When it comes to buying a car, it is important to do your homework first. Start by researching the vehicles you’re interested in and finding out their market value; this will form the basis of your budget and make sure that you don’t end up paying too much.

Inspect Vehicles

Before participating in an auction, try to inspect the vehicles you are interested in. This can be done by going to a preview day or setting up a private inspection. Once you’ve taken a closer look, you should assess the condition of the automobile along with its background and documentation to prevent unwanted surprises after you have purchased it.

Secure Financing

Before going to the auction, make sure to get pre-approval from a lender in order to have finances ready. Doing so can help you keep within your budget and not overspend.


Receive a bidder’s number when you sign up for the auction. It might be necessary to provide a deposit or credit card information to take part in certain auctions.

Bidding Strategies To Buy A Car At Auction

Before going into a car auction, it is essential to plan ahead to avoid the temptation of becoming too engaged and spending more than desired. The following pointers will help you get the most out of your experience:

Set a Budget

It is essential that you create and follow a budget in order to prevent yourself from going overboard with the expenses of your vehicle. Setting up and following a spending plan will help keep you on track financially.

Be Patient

Before signing the paperwork, it is important to ensure that the car you are considering meets all of your requirements. Don’t let yourself be rushed into a commitment; take your time to find the perfect match for you and your lifestyle.

Be Confident

Have confidence when you make a bids and ensure that your offer is heard. Doing so will discourage other bidders from making higher offers, thus allowing you to obtain the vehicle for a more reasonable price.

Don’t Get Emotional

When shopping for a vehicle, it’s best to remain levelheaded and not become too attached.

Know When to Walk Away

Rather than feeling compelled to place a bid that exceeds your budget or the vehicle’s market value, it may be prudent to wait for another opportunity. It is perfectly acceptable to walk away in this situation and there are likely many other options available.

After the Auction

Congratulations on snagging a great deal at an auction for your new vehicle! To finalize the purchase and take ownership of the car, you must complete a few simple steps:

Arrange Payment To Buy A Car At Auction

Before attending an auction, it’s important to be aware of the required payment schedule. This is usually within 24-48 hours and can be made through wire transfer, certified check, or any other accepted method.

Complete Paperwork

Before the transaction is finalized, there are certain documents that must be completed.

Arrange Transportation

Rather than traveling a long distance to retrieve your vehicle or attempting to transport it across state lines, consider enlisting the help of a car shipping service. An experienced auto transport company can ensure that your new vehicle reaches your home without any additional hassle or stress on your end. In other words, you’ll be able to get your vehicle in an efficient and reliable manner.

In Search Of A Bargain? The Following Are Five Great Online Auto Auctions To Consider


Copart is a well-known website for those who enjoy the thrill of an online auto auction. It offers an extensive selection of cars from different makers and models, making it easy to find something that suits your tastes. Copart also has a direct bidding system in place which allows you to follow your bids and keep tabs on them. Furthermore, any vehicle you choose comes with comprehensive information regarding its state, mileage and any damages it may have sustained.


Manheim is one of the foremost online auto auction websites when it comes to buying used cars. It presents a massive selection of vehicles and has an intuitive user interface. You can take advantage of all the tools and resources Manheim offers, such as vehicle history reports and condition assessments, so you can make a knowledgeable decision when selecting your car.


Offering one of the largest selections of cars around, IAA is an online auto auction platform that makes it easy to buy or sell a vehicle. Navigating their extensive selection is simple and users can easily find the car they are seeking from a variety of different makes and models. On top of that, IAA offers comprehensive information about each listing, including details on its condition and any existing damages.

Auto Auction Mall

Buying a vehicle has become much easier with the advent of online auctions, and none more so than with the convenience offered by the website of the Auto Auction Mall. This site provides potential buyers with all of the necessary information they need to make an educated decision when bidding on cars from various auctions, all in one place.

Auction Export

Auction Export is an ideal solution for international car buyers seeking quick and easy access to a plethora of vehicles. This online auto-auction website is easily navigated, providing detailed information about each car, including its condition and any potential damages, as well as efficient shipping services. As such, customers can purchase cars with confidence from the comfort of their own home.

Benefits of Car Shipping Service

When you’re in the market for a car shipping service, there are numerous advantages that come with your choice to buy a car at auction:


Instead of you having to pick up your newly purchased car from an auction site, why not take advantage of the services provided by car shipping companies? They will collect it and transport it quickly and safely to your desired location.


Rather than taking the risk of transporting your vehicle yourself, opting for a specialized auto transport company is the best way to ensure that your car arrives undamaged.

Time Savings

Forgo the arduous task of personally driving to pick up your new car and instead opt for a car shipping service. This way, you can dedicate time to other pressing matters.


When it comes to transporting cars, you can trust a reliable shipping service to get your vehicle from Point A to Point B unscathed.


When making the decision about how to best transport your car, it may be wise to consider using a car shipping service.

Understanding Auto Transport Costs

Prior to selecting a car shipping service, you should be aware of the elements that can affect the cost of auto transport. A few examples are:


When planning to transport your vehicle, a major factor to consider is how far apart are you shipping from and to. This distance can have a considerable effect on what you will pay for shipping services.

Vehicle Size and Weight

Larger and heavier vehicles may require specialized equipment or take up more space on the transport trailer, leading to higher shipping costs.

Open vs. Enclosed Transport

When transporting your vehicle, you must decide between the cost savings of utilizing open-air transport or the extra security that comes with enclosed shipping.

Time of Year

Due to seasonal changes, prices for auto transport can vary. During peak times of year, it may cost more to have your vehicle shipped. This is something that those within this industry must take into consideration when setting their rates.

Expedited Services

Do you need your vehicle to arrive right away?

Tips for Choosing a Car Shipping Service

Before deciding on which car shipping service to use, there are several aspects that you should take into account.


Prior to working with any company, it is important to investigate their standing in the industry. Reviews from prior customers can offer valuable insight into whether a business is known for providing safe and dependable services.

Licensing and Insurance

It is important to ensure your own protection by confirming the licensing and insurance policies of the company. Make sure all necessary steps are taken to avoid any potential liabilities.


When researching the cost of a particular service, it is important to consider quotes from several different companies. Understand that merely going with the lowest option may not be the wisest decision in the long run.

Customer Service

When it comes to the shipping experience, selecting a company that goes the extra mile in terms of customer service can make all the difference. Responsive and reliable support from the provider can ensure your shipment is as hassle-free as possible. The best in the industry is Direct Express Auto Transport.

Additional Services

As you compare car shipping services, take the time to consider what your individual needs may be. They offer a variety of services that could be beneficial to you, such as door-to-door delivery and vehicle storage.

To summarize, to buy a car at auction can be an energizing and beneficial undertaking, supplying you with the chance to discover a one of a kind vehicle at an appealing cost. By obtaining knowledge on the auction system, forming a bidding approach, and employing a car delivery service to transport your newly purchased automobile, you guarantee a successful and enjoyable car-buying encounter.

The Original Car Shipping Quote Calculator

Direct Express Auto Transport originated the instant car shipping quote calculator in 2004. It is still the best, most sophisticated, reliable tool available anywhere online. We offer three options that we call tiers of car shipping estimates. The standard rate is the cheapest car shipping quote, but it may take longer. Use it if you are patient. The expedited car shipping rate is most recommended, and we have countless satisfied customers because the shipping process tends to go quicker. The rush rate is our highest level of car shipping service, and we have many customers who are glad they went with that method. If you are buying a car from an auto auction, shipping it with us is a smart move.

auto transport tips, Vehicle Shipping Cost Calculator