There are so many different ways to try and lock down a deal for a cheap car in the Bay Area that the entire process can quickly become overwhelming. The best way to save time, money, and a lot of frustration is by quickly identifying the best places to consistently find cheap cars. Bay area police auctions are one such option. They are held at regular intervals which makes their timing predictable and they boast a wide variety of different makes, models, and conditions to choose from.
Two Ways to Approach Finding Cheap Car Deals at Bay Area Police Auctions
While you can utilize a variety of different strategies at an auto auction, there are two primary ways to approach finding a cheap car at a Bay Area police auction. The first is a reactionary approach. The key to making this work is research and due diligence. Since the listing of a police auction will have a lot of variance, there is little chance there will be more than one or two of any particular make and model. As a result, it is impossible to predict which cars will go cheap and which ones will get a lot of attention from other bidders.
With the reactionary approach, your goal is to create a fairly long list of potential target vehicles to bid on. For each vehicle, you should complete fairly extensive research in terms of vehicle history and current market value. Keep in mind that most Bay Area police auctions will provide VIN numbers as part of their auction listings. This will make it easier to begin your research. The benefit of this approach is you remain flexible throughout the auction. Instead of target only a handful of vehicles, your strategy is to essentially sit back and wait for car to slide through cracks. At every auction there will be a series of cars up for auction that get a lot of attention. Immediately following this event there will be a lull in the bidding. This is when you will find someone of the best deals on cheap cars.
The second strategy is more proactive. Instead of targeting a large number of vehicles, you are going to be extensive research on only a handful. With more detailed research you can easily identify the best potential deals. Unfortunately, it is impossible to predict exactly which cars will get the most attention from other bidders, so there is a real possibility you would need to attend several auctions before landing one of the cars you are targeting. The benefit of this strategy is you are guaranteed a great deal once you start bidding. The drawback is risk. The fewer cars you target, the greater the risk all of them will have multiple competing bidders to drive up the price.
Two (2) Examples of Cheap Car Deals Recently Found at Bay Area Police Auctions
1) 2004 Infiniti G35
This 2004 Infiniti G35 was valued at nearly $12,000 when the auction began. There were some noticeable dents and dings; however they appeared to be entirely cosmetic. The winning bidder paid only $3,500 for this black coupe. One of the reasons there were few competing bidders was because the car had over 110,000 miles of wear and tear. At the same time, the car had a spotless vehicle history so the new owner will likely get a great return on their investment.
2) 2004 Acura LT
Another savvy bidder at a recent police auction brought home a 2004 Acura LT for only $2,500. Before the auction began, this gray 4 door sedan was valued at just over $11,500. The reason some bidders were hesitant is because there was noticeable hail damage on the vehicle. Plus, it had over 100,000 miles on it. Considering the market value of the car, this still presented itself as a great deal.