Author Archives: repofinder

black pickup truck

Questions to Ask When Buying a Used Pickup Truck

Are you in the market for a new pickup truck but don’t want to go through a dealership? Your other options are to go through a private seller or an online auction. Both options are fine if you’re looking for a decent truck at a reasonable price.

Be prepared to do your homework because most of these purchases are as-is, meaning that you can’t return the vehicle if you don’t like it. Plus, you’ll be responsible for whatever problems it comes with. In exchange for this, you can save significant money, allowing you to finally get that pickup truck you’ve always wanted. 

To ensure you’re making a smart purchase, here are the top questions to ask when buying a used pickup truck. 

Are service and maintenance records available? 

People aren’t exactly receptive to having their car repossessed, so many of these vehicles don’t have a lot of information on them. Nevertheless, it doesn’t hurt to ask for any records that may have been tucked away in a glove compartment. This way, you can see what work and maintenance has been done on the truck.

Keep in mind that repos are cars that have been taken away because the owner defaulted on their loan. If they weren’t paying their loan, chances are, they weren’t taking their car in for maintenance either. But repossessions move fast in some states, and it’s possible that the car was last serviced within the year. 

Has the pickup truck been involved in any accidents? 

Reported accidents show up on the vehicle’s history report. Smaller accidents, like a driver backing into a light pole on a cloudy day, generally do not. To find out if the truck has been in any serious accidents, you’ll have to rely on the vehicle history report. This report lists brief details from the accident so that you know what occurred. 

What features don’t work? 

Most repo listings include the known problems about the vehicle such as interior stains, ripped seats and broken radios. Some of these problems may not be a big deal. For example, if the CD player doesn’t work, you’ll just listen to the radio instead. However, having a broken air conditioner can make your car uncomfortable in the summer, forcing you to make this expensive repair on your own. 

Can I have an inspection done? 

Most repo sellers encourage buyers to do their research and perform inspections. Before signing anything, bring along someone who knows cars and have them look at your vehicle. They can look for red flags that may indicate that it’s not the best pickup truck for you. There are plenty of trucks on the market, so you should never have to settle. 

Is this the best price? 

When shopping for used pickup trucks on RepoFinder, you’ll find that some trucks have a price and others are accepting bids. If you haven’t shopped for repossessions before, we recommend brushing up on how to place effective bids. This will prevent you from overpaying but also ensure your bids are strong enough to win.

Also pay attention to where the pickup truck is from, as you’ll have to make arrangements to have it shipped to you if it’s out of state. For many people, it makes sense to stick to used trucks in their local area so they can inspect the vehicle and drive it home. 

Find a Used Pickup Truck Today 

RepoFinder has an extensive database of used pickup trucks. Our inventory is always changing, so check back often! By signing up for a RepoFinder Pro account (less than $5 a month), you can view more information about the vehicles and place a bid. 

teen driver

New Teen Driver in the House? Get Them a Bank Owned Vehicle!

If you have a teenager in the home and they want a car, you have a few options to consider. You can buy the car for them, let them pay for the car on their own or do a combination of both. While it may seem tempting to go out and buy your teen a new car, especially if you have the money, it may not be the best option. 

Something else to consider is buying your teen a bank owned car. These vehicles have been repossessed from their previous owners and are now owned by the banks. However, the banks are in the market to lend money – not sell vehicles. What does this mean for you? You can get a decent first car for a fraction of what you’d pay at the dealership. 

Let’s look at the benefits of buying your teen a repossessed car. 

Honest, Affordable Prices 

Car dealerships drive people in with attractive ads, but they’re often deceptive. They might tease low payments, when in reality, the payments are temporary. Or they might show prices after a large down payment or low rates that only go up to a certain amount. Whatever the case, once you get to the dealership, the prices will be more than you thought.

Bank owned vehicles are affordable for a couple of reasons. First, the banks are highly motivated sellers that want to recoup some of their losses. Second, these cars are sold as-is. Whatever problems they come with are your responsibility. In return, the banks offer steep discounts to make these vehicles attractive. 

Low Monthly Payments 

When you pay less for a vehicle, the monthly loan payments will be lower as well. If your family can’t afford another car payment right now, a repo is a great option because you’ll pay far less than if you were to shop at the dealership. In fact, many repos are cheap enough that you can buy them outright without an auto loan. This is a great option for teens that have a nest egg saved up. 

Already Used and Loved 

Repossessions are previously owned so they’ve already been driven, used and loved. Even though your teen may feel that something new and shiny is best, this is rarely the case from a practical standpoint. Kids are kids and first-time cars often take a beating. 

The nice thing about used cars is that they’ve already been loved. You don’t have to worry too much about dents and dings. And your teen won’t have the pressure of keeping the car in pristine condition – they can focus on their driving experience instead. 

Find Your Teen Driver a Car at RepoFinder

RepoFinder has a huge database of repossessed cars that are perfect for new drivers. You can use our search tools to find a car that offers the features your child needs to be safe on the road while saving money and keeping payments low. Shop with us today and see what you can find for your teen driver! 

vehicles at an auction

4 Things to Know When Buying a Used Car at an Auction

Auto auctions allow buyers to purchase used vehicles through a bidding process. This usually ends up being a lot less than what a dealership would charge. Not all auctions are open to the public, but some are. To find auctions in your area, you’ll have to do some research. Auctions are available both in-person and online, allowing you to choose the method of shopping you prefer. 

While auto auctions can turn up a great deal, there’s also the risk of buying a beater car. Below are four things to know about buying a used or repossessed car at an auction. 

1. Pick the Right Auction 

Both brick-and-mortar and online auctions are available. Some say that the best deals can be found in person, though shopping online is more convenient. It really depends on how you prefer to shop. You can usually shop at auctions for free, but prepare to pay some type of fee to make a bid whether it’s online or in person. 

Another thing to watch for is public vs dealer auctions. Public or open auctions are available to the public. Dealer auctions are only open to those who hold a dealer’s license. Unless you work at a dealership, you probably don’t have a dealer’s license.

2. Determine Your Risk 

Many people use the “stoplight system” when shopping at auctions. This system helps buyers assess their risk and compare it to the price of the vehicle. 

  • A “green light” means that the vehicle is free from any known defects. Arbitration may be possible if severe problems turn up. 
  • A “yellow light” indicates that the car has some issues. However, arbitration is not an option. 
  • A “red light” is sold as-is. Repossessions are essentially “red light” cars because you purchase them in their current condition. 

3. Know How to Bid 

It’s easy to cave and bid more than you should on a car you really want, especially if there is other interest available. But there are many factors that will influence whether or not you get the car, so only bid what you are comfortable paying. You also want to leave money in your budget to take care of any problems that turn up. 

To help with this, it’s best to bring along someone who knows about cars. They can help determine the best bid to make, preventing you from over-bidding on cars that aren’t worth it and under-bidding on those that are a great deal. 

4. Inspect the Vehicle 

Cars sold at auctions are rarely available for test drive. So, you’ll have to rely on your knowledge to assess its condition and value. There are a number of resources you can use online such as Kelley Blue Book, CarConsumers.org and Nada Values. These guides can give you the confidence you need to identify the best vehicles and make an accurate but reasonable bid. 

RepoFinder has a great selection of repossessed cars, trucks, SUVs, motorcycles and recreational vehicles. View our database for free and find repos in your area. If you want more features, consider upgrading your account to RepoFinder Pro for just $4.95 a month – cancel anytime!

odometer on used car

Used Car Shopping: How Many Miles are Too Many?

Buying a used car is often a great way to save money while getting something dependable for work or school. As you shop for used or repossessed cars, you may be wondering how many miles are too many. Generally speaking, the higher the number of miles, the lower the value of the car. 

The problem is that not all miles are created equal. For example, a car with 100,000 highway miles is probably in better shape than a car with 50,000 city miles. As you consider your options for a used vehicle, here are some considerations when it comes to miles driven. 

How Do I Know if a Car Has Too Many Miles? 

When you look at two used or repo cars, one of the first things you’ll compare is the miles. If one car has 50,000 miles and the other has 100,000 miles, it’s easy to assume the vehicle with less miles is more desirable. However, it’s not quite that simple. 

Highway miles are actually easier on a car than city miles. You’re traveling long distances at high speeds, but this is good for the alternator and battery because it let’s them charge properly. It’s also better for fuel efficiency because you’re traveling at constant speeds. 

City miles, on the other hand, involve a lot of stop-and-go traffic. This type of driving is much harder on the vehicle because of the braking and accelerating, which is bad for your engine, transmission and brakes. Stop-and-go driving also hurts your fuel efficiency. 

The Age of the Car Matters 

Another thing to consider is how old the repo vehicle is. 15,000 miles a year is considered to be the industry average, so it’s not unreasonable for a 10-year-old vehicle to have 100,000-150,000 miles on it. If the repo car that you’re interested in has far more or less miles, it’s worth asking why. 

Some cars might have less miles than they should, which looks attractive at first glance. However, if the car hasn’t been driven in a while, you may need to replace the oil, change out the oil filter and replace the transmission fluid. If the car has more miles than what is reasonable, it may need a lot of maintenance. 

How Long Do Cars Last?  

In terms of mileage, cars have an average life expectancy of 200,000 miles. Today’s vehicles are built stronger than ever, allowing many to be pushed over the 200,000 mark, regardless of whether it was reached in two years or ten. In fact, high-mileage cars are a good indication that the engine is running smoothly and has lots of life left.

Find a Used Car with the Right Mileage at RepoFinder

RepoFinder.com has a full database of repo vehicles sold by banks and credit unions across the U.S. To find a reliable used vehicle for a fraction of the price, contact us today. You can browse our database and find local repossessed cars, trucks and SUVs that work for you. 

buying cars from a private seller

Risks of Buying a Used Car from a Private Seller

Purchasing a car from a private seller can be a great way to save money on a vehicle while avoiding the dealership. If you know what you want, there’s no reason not to entertain buying a car privately. But, there are some risks to be aware of. Once you learn about these risks, you may feel more comfortable buying a used car from a more trustworthy source like a bank or credit union. 

Lack of Consumer Protection

The first thing to know is that state and federal laws that apply to dealerships do not apply to private sellers. Even though people don’t always enjoy working with dealerships, there are protections in place if you’re not happy with your purchase.

Unfortunately, you don’t get these same protections when shopping privately. You’re buying the car as-is, which means whatever problems it has will become your problems. Additionally, you won’t get any warranties, unless the manufacturer’s warranty is still valid. In this case, the warranty can be transferred to your name. 

Greater Responsibility 

When you walk into a dealership, you have multiple people talking to you and asking about your wants and needs. The knowledge that car salespeople have can be incredibly helpful to your search. Even if you came in looking for a specific car, they can recommend other vehicles that will fit your needs and budget. 

Naturally, you aren’t going to get this type of customer service when buying from a private seller. The seller may be nice enough to answer your questions, show you the manual and take you for a test drive, but they don’t have to do any of these things, either. Consider all of the time you’ll spend researching cars, scheduling meetings, arranging for transportation, etc. Time is money after all. 

More paperwork

Not only are you responsible for everything listed above, but also you and the seller must handle the paperwork. This means you’ll have to work with the seller to transfer the title, registration and any related fees, taxes and warranties. Usually, you’ll have to make a trip to the DMV to sort this out. 

Difficult Negotiations 

Again, this all depends on the seller, as some are more accommodating and will accept lower offers. However, many private sellers are not flexible on price. They’re expecting to make a certain profit, or they may be emotionally attached to the vehicle. This is why private sellers often charge more than they should. 

Banks and Lenders are a Safe Alternative to Private Sellers

If you’re unsure about working with a private seller but want to avoid the dealership, consider purchasing a repossessed vehicle through a bank, credit union or lender. Because these vehicles come straight from the source, there’s no middleman, easier negotiations and attractive financing offers. Plus, the banks aren’t emotionally attached to the vehicles – they want them sold!

To see what types of repos are available in your area, browse the inventory on RepoFinder.com

repossession

What Does it Mean to Buy a Repossessed Vehicle?

Are you thinking about buying a repossessed vehicle? It helps to know the facts about these vehicles so that you know what to expect. Some people think that repos are always in poor condition, but this is not necessarily the case. In fact, many people are able to purchase the car they want in great condition for a fraction of the price! However, patience and diligence are two qualities you’ll need.

Below is more information about what a repossessed vehicle is and what this means for you. 

What are Repossessed Vehicles? 

Owning a car can be a luxury, but it also comes with a steep price tag. According to Experian, average car payments are $554 for a new car and $391 for a used car. If you have other financial obligations like a mortgage payment or student loans, paying hundreds of dollars for a car every month may not be feasible.

As with other purchases, it’s common for people to overbuy on their vehicle. They can easily get swayed by the latest features or a newer model and end up taking on more than they can afford. For others, it’s a change in financial circumstances that makes it impossible to keep on top of their payments. 

Now, you might be thinking, “why not just return the car?” but it’s not that easy. Cars depreciate around 20% to 30% by the end of their first year. From years 2-6, depreciation ranges from 15% to 18% per year. This means that by year 5, cars have already depreciated by 60% or more of their initial value. 

How Quickly Can the Banks Repo Cars? 

Most people who buy cars use financing to do so. By taking out an auto loan, the borrower is agreeing to make the monthly payments on-time each month. If they don’t hold up their end of the deal, the lender has the right to take away the car. 

How quickly a car is repossessed depends on the lender and your state. Some lenders don’t start the repossession process until three payments are missed, while others will start it right after one missed payment. By law, lenders have the right to take your car away the day after a missed payment!

When are Repos Made Available to the Public? 

Once the car is repossessed, the banks usually try to give the owner another chance to catch back up. If this doesn’t happen, they’ll auction the vehicle off. Cars in poor condition are usually sent to a junkyard and not listed for sale. 

Repossessions come at a discount. This is what makes them valuable to car buyers. Many of the vehicles put up for auction are in good condition. However, they most likely haven’t had any maintenance, as the owner couldn’t even afford to make the payments. But with a bit of attention, most of the cars will be as good as new! 

Well, there you have it. Now you know about repossessed cars, where they come from and how they become available to the public. RepoFinder allows you to buy repossessions directly from banks and lenders. These are true repos at discounted prices. View our database for free and see what’s available in your area!

red repo car suv

Top 5 Things You Didn’t Know About Repossessions

This entry was posted in Repo Cars and tagged , , on by .

Thinking about buying a repo car, truck or SUV? RepoFinder has a wide selection of repossessions being sold directly from the banks and credit unions. As long as you’re patient and do your research, you should have no problem finding a vehicle at a discounted price. Keep reading for five things you probably didn’t know about repos. 

1. To save money, you have to buy repos directly from the bank.  

Dealerships often market “repo vehicles for sale” but they’re typically not true repos. Instead, dealers buy these cars from auctions, fix them up and sell them to the public. By this point, you’re getting essentially any other used car.

To get a true repo, it’s best to shop directly with the source: a bank or credit union. These institutions make money by lending money, so when a person stops making their car payments, they take away the vehicle. To recoup their losses, the banks will sell these cars directly to the public – no middle man. 

2. Repos are often in good condition. 

It’s true that repos are not always in good condition. When people stop paying on their car, they typically stop paying for maintenance, too. Some may even damage the car once they receive notice of repossession. Fortunately, the banks often send these vehicles straight to auction. 

We always encourage car buyers to do their research, but rest assured you can find a great selection of repos in good condition on RepoFinder. Many owners are unable to afford their new car payments, and some even turn their vehicles in voluntarily. 

3. You can save money – but not always. 

Repos are sold “as-is.” This is why they are priced lower than average, as you’re taking on whatever repairs the car needs. Cars are worth buying this way as long as they only need basic repairs and maintenance – new tires, oil changes, etc. Be wary of buying a repo that shows signs of bigger problems because you will end up inheriting them on your dime. 

4. You’re responsible for doing your own research. 

Car salesmen can be bothersome, but it’s also nice to have someone showing you the ropes and assisting with negotiations and paperwork. When browsing repos, you’re essentially on your own. You have to watch out for yourself, so be sure to research the cars you’re interested in, ask the seller questions about the vehicle’s condition and have an inspection done. Also, know the NADA Guide’s lowest value and bid accordingly. 

5. You’ll have to be patient. 

Buying a repo isn’t like buying a new car. You can’t just walk into a dealership and drive away with something new on the same day. 

Even though there are many online auction sites, repos are a bit more difficult to get than people realize. Good quality repos are in demand, and there’s often multiple people bidding on them. Take your time, research each vehicle and make a strong bid. It could take weeks to hear back, so be patient. 

Find a Great Deal on a Repo Today 

Browsing the repo inventory on RepoFinder.com is always free! If you choose to upgrade to RepoFinder Pro, it’s just $4.95 a month (cancel anytime). This membership allows unlimited searches, full access to our repo list and the ability to buy directly from the bank – no sales, commissions or dealer’s license required!

driving in RV reading a map

Renting vs Buying an RV: Which is Better?

This entry was posted in Repo RVs and tagged , , , on by .

Coronavirus is changing the way people travel. Rather than risking exposure to the virus, more people are choosing to skip the flights and hotels and travel by RV instead. If you’re thinking about taking your own getaway with a camper, you might be wondering if it’s better to rent or buy one. Below we’ll cover the pros and cons to renting and buying an RV so that you can determine what is best for you and your family! 

Cost 

Cost is one of the main reasons why renting makes sense for a lot of people. On average, RV users only use their campers a few times a year, if that. If you don’t want to be making payments every month on something you won’t be using, renting is your best option. 

However, if you plan on using your RV more frequently, it may be worth buying. Renting an RV still costs hundreds of dollars every night. Plus, there are hidden costs like cleaning fees, setup fees, gas, mileage, etc. Owning an RV can definitely pay off in the long run. 

Storage 

Another key reason why people prefer to rent is because of the storage. If you own your RV, you’ll have to park it on your driveway or pay for RV storage. Some people don’t want to be bothered with this step, especially if they don’t have a large driveway or extra cash to spend on storage fees. That said, if you have the room to store an RV, it won’t be a problem to own one!

Maintenance 

Like other vehicles, RVs do require maintenance. If you’re renting, you don’t have to worry about this upkeep. You can use the RV and return it when you’re done! As an RV owner, however, you’re responsible for the maintenance. It can be expensive, but when you consider the money you’ll save on flights, hotels, etc., it’s probably worth it! 

Lifestyle 

Now let’s shift our focus onto the huge perk to owning an RV – a fun lifestyle! When you don’t have to go through the hassle of renting a camper and paying the fees, you’ll be more likely to jump in your RV whenever you want. You can take it camping every weekend, travel extensively, visit out-of-state relatives and even live in it short term! 

Comfort 

Owning your RV also allows you to create a home away from home. You can pick out the features you want and upgrade the RV as you’d like. Today’s RVs are better than ever with features like dedicated office spaces, recessed lighting, hardwood flooring, walk-in closets, pull-out pantries and more. Design and decorate your RV so that you never have to feel like you’re away from home. 

Buy a Cheap Used RV 

Renting an RV is a wonderful way to see the world without having to worry about storage, upkeep and maintenance. But if you’re an avid traveler who plans on using your camper often, owning will serve you well. To save money, browse the repossessed RV inventory available on RepoFinder.com. You can find a great selection of RVs that are in good repair and free of water damage. They may be the ticket to owning your own RV! 

black SUV

Does a Check Engine Light Always Mean Something Bad?

When a vehicle has its check engine light (malfunction indicator lamp) on, it’s easy to feel discouraged. After all, this light is telling you that something is wrong, and it’s hard to say how big the problem is until you take it into a dealership. 

So what happens when you want to buy a vehicle and the check engine light is on?

This doesn’t typically happen at the dealership because all vehicles are thoroughly inspected before being placed on the lot. However, repossessions are collected from owners who aren’t paying on their loans, so these vehicles often don’t receive the maintenance they should. 

Let’s take a closer look at what the check engine light really means and if it’s safe to buy a car with one on. 

Is the Check Engine Light Always Bad? 

The check engine light is tied to your car’s onboard diagnostics system and is intended to light up when something is wrong. Problems in the electronic control system are stored in a “trouble code” so that the source of the issue can be identified.

To find out what the code is, you can take your car into a dealership or auto shop to have it read. You can also purchase your own inexpensive code reader online if you intend on diagnosing and fixing the problem yourself. This is a great way to save money and get experience working on cars.

Once you have the code, you’ll know what you’re working with and what repairs are required. The good news is that the check engine light doesn’t always mean that something major is wrong. All it means is that something needs to be addressed. 

Most Common Reasons Why the Check Engine Light Turns On 

The check engine light can turn on for a number of reasons. Here are some of the most common: 

  • Oxygen sensor. The oxygen sensor tracks the number of unburned oxygen in your car’s fuel system. Without this sensor, you’re likely to have bad fuel economy and damage to your spark plug and catalytic converter. 
  • Broken gas cap. If your gas cap is broken, loose or missing, the check engine light will come on. Without a secure cap, you can lose gas and have to fill up more often. 
  • Failing catalytic converter. This converter turns carbon monoxide into carbon dioxide. If it’s broken, you’ll have poor engine performance and fuel efficiency.
  • Spark plugs. The spark plugs need to be replaced every so often. Otherwise, poor components will lead to poor engine performance and damaged parts. 

Should I Buy a Car with the Check Engine Light On? 

If you’ve found a car that you really like but it has a check engine light on, have it checked out by a mechanic. Don’t take someone else’s word for it that it’s no big deal. The system is telling you that something is amiss, so take it seriously. It’s very possible that the light doesn’t indicate anything serious, but if it does, you’ll be glad to know about it.

If the mechanic is able to find out what’s wrong, you can request a discount to pay for the repair. Many banks and credit unions are willing to negotiate their prices. At the very least, you’ll have a full understanding of what’s wrong. If you’re not willing to make any repairs and you’re not a mechanic, it’s probably best to skip the car. 

RepoFinder has a huge inventory of repo cars, trucks, SUVs, recreational vehicles and more. Many are in great condition and have plenty of life left! Browse them today for free! 

shopping for cars online

Advantages and Disadvantages of Shopping for Used Cars Online

This entry was posted in Repo Cars and tagged , , on by .

Online shopping is convenient, especially when you’re buying essential products like shampoo, conditioner and laundry detergent. But when you’re spending big money, you have to be more careful about what you buy. 

There are pros and cons to shopping for used cars online. You get the convenience of shopping at home (which is especially helpful during a pandemic!) and comparing different features and prices. But, you don’t have a salesperson or test drive to lead the way. 

As you consider shopping for a used car online, here are the advantages and disadvantages to be aware of. Fortunately, you can make your online car shopping experience positive by being an informed consumer. 

Advantages of Online Car Shopping 

Many people have great experiences with online car shopping, but it’s important to do your homework. Here are some of the biggest benefits to expect when you buy a used car from the internet: 

  • No need to work with a car salesman or haggle for prices 
  • Compare hundreds of vehicles at once – you’re not limited to what’s on the car lot 
  • No risk of being upsold like you could at a dealership 
  • Enjoy a low-stress shopping experience from your home 
  • Research the vehicles on your list 
  • Take your time making a decision – you won’t face any pressure 
  • Apply for financing online through different carriers 

Disadvantages of Shopping for Cars Online 

Even though browsing used cars online is convenient and practical, there are some things to be aware of:

  • Unable to test drive the vehicle (at least at the moment)
  • Buying a repossession means you’re buying “as-is,” so you won’t have protection if something goes wrong 
  • No options for leasing the vehicle 
  • If the car is in a different state, it will be harder to see

Why More People are Buying their Cars Online 

Many people feel taken advantage of when they visit a dealership, and this pressure can lead to buyer’s remorse. Shopping from home is convenient and makes sense for people who don’t like the high-stress environment of a dealership. 

When you shop RepoFinder’s inventory, you can view the vehicles that fit your wants and needs, explore their condition and make an offer. You don’t have to leave home to do this, and you can enjoy a user-friendly platform that allows you to work directly with the banks and credit unions. Because it’s just you and the seller, you have the power to negotiate an even lower price. 

We always recommend doing an inspection before signing anything. Bring along someone who knows cars so that you can get an objective opinion. Otherwise, buying a used car online can be a great experience that allows you to purchase a vehicle you won’t regret later on!