Tag Archives: repo vehicles

man shopping for cars

Do I Need a Dealer’s License to Buy Repossessions?

If you’re interested in buying a repossessed vehicle for sale, you might be wondering if you need a dealer’s license to do so. Depending on who you buy the repo from, it’s possible that they may require a dealer’s license. But, not every repo seller does.

RepoFinder.com is a nationwide directory of banks and credit unions that sell repossessions to the public. You do NOT need a dealer’s license to buy any of the vehicles listed on our site. Let’s learn more about what a dealer’s license is, when you need it and why RepoFinder does not require one. 

What is a Dealer’s License? 

A car dealer’s license is required to start a dealership business. This license allows you to purchase new vehicles from car manufacturers and used vehicles from auto auctions. The benefit of having this license is that you can buy vehicles on a large scale. So, if you wanted to purchase ten vehicles from a repo auction, you could do so with a dealer’s license. 

To obtain a dealer’s license, you need proof of a federal tax identification number and evidence of your company’s name and location. Additionally, you need proof of insurance to cover all of the vehicles you plan to sell at your dealership. 

Why Would Someone Use a Dealer’s License to Buy Repos? 

Repossessed cars, trucks and recreational vehicles are hot. They are sold at highly discounted prices because the banks and credit unions are trying to recoup their losses. It’s not uncommon for repos to need some basic maintenance and repairs, as many haven’t received this from their owners. But, they tend to be in decent condition with few major problems. 

For this reason, the dealerships love getting repos. They can purchase the cars in bulk at a discounted rate, fix them up and sell them for as much as any other used car on the lot. This is why some repo listing sites and auctions require a dealer’s license. 

Does RepoFinder Require a Dealer’s License? 

RepoFinder sells repossessed vehicles to the public, so you do not need a dealer’s license to purchase a vehicle through our repo listing site. However, it’s important to know that each bank and credit union has different processes for selling repos. Therefore, you’ll want to visit each individual site to know what you need to purchase a vehicle.

For example, some banks will make you go through the bidding process while others allow immediate purchases. We do recommend working with banks that let you see the vehicle before you sign anything. Once you sign the paperwork, the car is yours whether it drives or not. 

RepoFinder.com makes it easy to shop for repossessions in your area. Check back often, as new repossessions are being added all the time! 

car keys in hand

What Happens if a Car Doesn’t Have a Title?

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

A car title proves that you are the owner of a vehicle. This is why the team at RepoFinder always recommends buying used vehicles with a title. Otherwise, someone who has the valid title can come and take your car away because they are the rightful owners – even if you paid for the vehicle. 

But what happens if you find a vehicle that you want and it doesn’t have the title? While it’s a risky move, there are some ways you can make a safer purchase. Below are some tips on how to buy a car without a title. 

Get background information 

First, do a little research. Is there a reason why the vehicle doesn’t have a title? It’s possible that the original document was misplaced or stolen. Some vintage cars are also difficult to register and obtain a title.

Here are some questions we suggest asking: 

  • Where did you get the car? 
  • How long have you had the vehicle? 
  • Is there a lien on the car? 
  • What is the VIN? 
  • Who has current ownership of the car? 

Make sure it wasn’t stolen 

It’s important to know that you are buying a legal car. You can use a tool like AutoCheck or Carfax to find out the legal status of the vehicle, as well as other information like its odometer reading, accident history and insurance claims. Additionally, check out the car’s VIN from your state’s DMV. However, be aware that your DMV may not be able to answer all of your questions due to confidentiality and privacy issues.

Get a bill of sale 

As long as there are no red flags, you can proceed with the sale. But, do protect yourself by documenting everything. The first thing to write up is a bill of sale. This will help prove ownership and document other information like if the seller is going to supply you with a replacement title. If this is the case, we suggest putting your money in escrow and not paying in full until you get the title. 

Get a surety bond title 

If the vehicle’s title was lost or stolen, you can request a lost title bond. These bonds protect the DMV from the loss of the vehicle and potential damages, as well as protects buyers from obtaining fraudulent duplicates of titles. Once everything is verified by the surety bond company, you’ll pay a percentage of the bond amount. As long as no issues arise, you can get a clean title in 3-5 years. 

While we don’t recommend buying cars without their titles, there are certain times when it makes sense to do so. When shopping for repo cars, you might find that some have “repo titles.” This is fine – all it means is that the car was repossessed. Once you purchase the vehicle from the bank or lender, the title is transferred to your name. To browse repos with clean titles, visit RepoFinder.com today. 

person riding an ATV

3 Reasons to Buy a Salvage ATV

Owning an ATV is important for many families. You can take these recreational vehicles on wide open trails, along the coast or up and downhill for fun-filled adventures whenever you want. Plus, ATVs get you out in the fresh air and away from TV and computer screens. 

Whether you’re looking to purchase your first ATV or add to your growing collection, a salvage ATV might be a great addition. Here are three reasons to consider shopping for a salvage ATV.

  1. Huge Selection of Vehicles 

If you have a tight budget to spend on recreational vehicles, consider salvage ATVs. These vehicles were damaged or deemed a total loss by the insurance company. They’re usually in rough shape, but that doesn’t mean they’re total junk. You could get lucky and find an ATV with minimal damage. Or, you could use the ATV as a project piece.

  1. Easy to Repair Damage 

Most salvage ATVs have sustained damage from an accident or flood. Nevertheless, you’ll find that some of these damages are repairable. If you have some knowledge in this department or know someone who does, it can be a lot cheaper to go this route. You can even purchase a salvage ATV for parts, allowing you to fix up an ATV that you already own. This, too, is usually cheaper than buying new. 

  1. Simple Buying Process 

You can easily find salvage ATVs from online auto auctions. Browse through the inventory and place a bid when you find the vehicle you want. Be sure to do your research so that you know what you should be paying for the ATV. Name brands like Yamaha, Honda and Kawasaki tend to be most expensive. If you win the bid, the auction house will arrange for shipment of the vehicle. 

Repossessed ATVS for Sale: Another Affordable Option 

If you’re an outdoor adventure enthusiast, an ATV is probably built into your lifestyle. Shopping for salvage ATVs is a great way to save money while getting the parts you need. But it’s not the only option. You can also shop for repossessed ATVs. 

Repo vehicles are not salvaged, and many are in great condition. They cost a fraction of the price of a new ATV and are available from credit unions and lenders. To view affordable repo ATVs for sale, check out the listings on RepoFinder.com. It’s free!  

driving a repo car from a credit union

Is it Smart to Buy a Repo from a Credit Union?

If you’re thinking about buying a repossessed car, truck or recreational vehicle, you’ll find a number of ways to make this purchase. However, not all are created equal. For example, if you buy a repo from a dealership, you are going to pay more because the dealership has taken some time to fix and clean the vehicle. For the best prices and freedom in negotiations, it’s smart to buy a repo from a credit union.

What is a Credit Union? 

A credit union is a financial cooperative that is owned by its members. It exists to serve its members, allowing them a safe place to save and borrow money at affordable rates. Like banks, credit unions also accept deposits and make loans. They also repossess things when their borrowers don’t pay. 

Compared to banks, credit unions don’t have various departments and teams to manage repossessions. This means that in a short amount of time, they can start looking like used car lots. The solution to this problem is to get rid of repossessions as quickly as possible. It’s a win for the credit unions because they get vehicles off their lots, and it’s a win for buyers because they have safe vehicles to choose from. 

What are the Benefits of Buying from a Credit Union? 

Because credit unions are operated independently, there are different procedures that they follow. So, before buying a vehicle from a credit union in your area, ask about their process for listing repossessions. Gathering all the information you can will increase your chances of finding a safe and reliable repo car. 

Here are some benefits to purchasing a repo from a local credit union: 

  • Competitive prices. Credit unions want to get the cars off their lots and recoup their losses. You can find lower-than-average rates on plenty of great cars by browsing lender inventories. 
  • Ability to negotiate. Most of the time, credit unions are open to negotiations. Be sure to do your research so that you can make a compelling offer that’s hard to refuse! 
  • Option for financing. It’s possible that you can get financing directly from the credit union. Typically, credit unions have lower interest rates and fees, too.  
  • Inspect the vehicle. As long as you limit your search to local credit unions, you should be able to inspect the vehicle on their lot. If you find a vehicle in another state, you can have it shipped to you. 

Bottom line: Buying a repossession from a credit union is a great option, especially when you’re shopping for a vehicle on a budget. To browse a full list of repossessions in your area from local banks and credit unions, visit RepoFinder.com. It’s free! 

man looking at vin in car

Buying a Repo: What Does a VIN Lookup Tell You?

If you’re interested in buying a repo car or truck, you can learn a lot of information from the VIN (Vehicle Identification Number). A VIN is a unique code given to every vehicle when it’s manufactured. It contains 17 letters and numbers that can be found on the vehicle’s dashboard on the driver’s side. The numbers may seem random, but each section gives information on the vehicle’s origin.

Here at RepoFinder, we always remind car shoppers to inspect the vehicles they plan on purchasing. There are many great repos out there, but you have to do your research! The VIN is a good place to start. You can use this free tool from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to check if the car is subject to a recall. 

Breaking Down a VIN 

VIN information is organized into groups. By looking at each section, you can get a lot of information on a vehicle. For detailed charts breaking down the meaning of each digit and letter, visit driving-tests.org

  • First letter or digit. The first letter identifies the country of origin. For example, cars made in the U.S. start with a 1, 4 or 5, whereas cars made in Canada begin with a 2. Letters may also be used to indicate a country, as is the case with England (“S”), Germany (“W”) and South Korea (“K”). 
  • Second letter. The next letter tells you about the manufacturer. In some cases, the letter stands for the manufacturer’s name – “A” for Audi, “B” for BMW and “G” for General Motors. However, this isn’t always consistent because the letter “A” can also refer to Jaguar or Mitsubishi. 
  • Third digit. The third number, when combined with the first two letters and numbers, tells you the vehicle’s type. 
  • Numbers 4-9. The next set of numbers describes the vehicle’s model, body type, restraint system, transmission type and engine code. 
  • Number 9. This number is the check digit, which is used to detect invalid VINs. 
  • Numbers 10-17. The next group of numbers indicates the vehicle identifier section. For example, Number 10 is the model year, Number 11 is the manufacturing plant and the last six numbers are the production sequence numbers. 

VIN Checks are Free

Now that you have the basics on what a VIN stands for, you can get to work checking the VINs of the repos you’re looking at. You can run a VIN check for free, but this will only provide you with basic information on the car. We still recommend talking to the bank or credit union that has possession of the vehicle and doing a thorough inspection. For a full list of bank repos in your area, visit RepoFinder.com

used car for cheap

How to Find a Used Car for Under 10K

According to Experian, the average car price for 2019 tops $34,000! That’s a lot of money for a vehicle, especially when you start factoring in all the costs associated with having a car – insurance payments, oil changes, gas fill-ups, tire replacements, etc. 

Whether you’re on a tight budget or are purchasing a car for a young driver, paying over $30k might not seem reasonable. Fortunately, there are ways to get a dependable vehicle for $10k or less. You might have to wait longer, but the right car will come along. 

Browse Repossessions 

One of the best ways to find a cheap used car is to look at the repossessions in your area. Check with banks and credit unions for a complete list. If you do a simple search online, you’ll probably end up looking at dealerships that are selling so-called repos. You’ll end up paying more for these vehicles, so stick to local banks, lenders and credit unions. You can find a full list of repos in your state by visiting RepoFinder.com

Know How to Negotiate 

Negotiations can save you a few hundred dollars or more on a used car. The key is to do your research and know what the car sells for so that you can be an effective negotiator. If you’re interested in a repo car, you’ll find that many banks and lenders are open to negotiations. They’re looking to move repos as quickly as possible so they can get them off their books. A fair, reasonable offer is a win-win for both of you. 

Shop at the Right Time 

Some times of the year are better than others to shop for a car. Generally speaking, it’s best to shop late in the year and late in the month. Car dealerships have sales quotas they have to meet, which typically break down to monthly, quarterly and yearly sales goals. In order to reach these goals, dealerships may push harder to get cars sold at the end of a month, which means lower prices and better negotiations for buyers. 

Do Your Research 

Always do your research when shopping for used vehicles, whether they be “for sale by owner” or repossessions from your local credit union. Find out what the car is worth, as some makes/models have a low resale value. Others have reoccurring defects, hard-to-find parts or costly maintenance that will have you spending a lot more than $10k in the first year. It’s better to pay more initially and get a great car in the long run. 

With average car loans around $30k, it’s no wonder why many people are getting savvier with their vehicle purchases. There’s no reason to spend this much money if all you need is a clean, reliable car to get you to and from where you need to go. RepoFinder.com has a full list of banks, lenders and credit unions in your area with repo inventory. Browse our list and see what you can find for $10k or under! 

college student

5 Reasons Why Repo Cars are Great for College Students

Do you have a college student who’s begging to have a car? With the increasing costs of college tuition and everything that comes with it, it’s no wonder why buying a vehicle is the last thing you want to do. But, there are practical reasons why some college students need a vehicle, such as getting to and from work or sports practice. 

Fortunately, there is a solution to your dilemma: a repossessed vehicle. These used cars are a great pick for college students and other young drivers. Here are five reasons why. 

  1. Repos are reasonably priced. 

Repossessions have been taken away by the lender or bank. They want to recoup their losses as quickly as possible, which allows you to land a great deal on a used car. Use RepoFinder.com to find repossessions in your area. We recommend buying directly from the lender – not a dealership or third party. Buying direct is cheapest, and you may even be able to purchase the vehicle without financing. 

  1. You won’t mind leaving it parked on campus. 

If your student comes to college with a car, they won’t get a heated, covered parking space. The vehicle will be left out in various parking lots or on the sides of streets. It may be borrowed or used to transport friends. Repos are not always in poor condition, but many of them have been well-loved. You won’t mind if it gets a few dings along the way. 

  1. …Or they sit in your driveway.

Perhaps you want to purchase a used vehicle for your student to use when they come home. If the car will be sitting on your driveway while your child is away at college, a repossession is a great option. Again, the used car will probably already have some dents and dings, so it can sit outside without you worrying. When your child does come home from college, they’ll have a safe car to drive.

  1. Your insurance rates will be lower. 

Car insurance rates are typically lower with repossessions. Because these cars aren’t new, they are cheaper to insure. And, if you choose to buy the vehicle without financing, you don’t have to get full coverage. You can get the basic insurance in your state and save money on your monthly premiums. 

  1. They’re not beaters. 

Lastly, repossessed vehicles are not beaters. In fact, many are new and in great condition! This means that your college student can have a car that they’re proud of and start working toward more responsibility by making monthly payments, paying for oil changes, etc. It’s a win-win for everyone in the household.

To browse repossessions in your area, visit RepoFinder.com. It’s free and updated regularly, so check back often for new repos that you can bid on.

retired woman on bench

Why Retirees Should Consider Repo Cars

Each year, thousands of people buy repossessed trucks, cars and recreational vehicles because of their affordability. Many repos are in good condition and sold at a fair price, allowing buyers to pay in full for the vehicle or finance a small amount. But, repos are not just reserved for young people with little to put down or car enthusiasts who love getting a good deal. They are also a great option for retirees.

Once retired and living off savings, people have a different perspective when making purchase decisions. If you’re currently retired and living off a fixed income, you may want to consider a repo for your primary or second vehicle. Here are the reasons why these used vehicles make a great option for retirees. 

Affordable Monthly Payments 

The most obvious benefit to repos is that they are affordable. How much they cost depends on the condition they are in and what the previous owner owed on their loan. Banks and lenders try to recoup their losses, but there is always room for negotiation. That’s why it’s important to do your homework, look up Kelley Blue Book prices and know what you should be paying for a particular vehicle. 

In general, repos sell for 25 to 40 percent of a similar car’s value. This means that you can walk away with a lower car payment than if you were to buy new or lease. And, if you choose to buy the car outright, you won’t have a car payment at all. This usually isn’t an option with new and used cars, but it can be with a repo. 

Service and Warranty Plans May Be Intact 

Many repossessions are in good working condition, as they were being used and driven up until they were taken away. If you can land a repo that’s new, the service and warranty plans may still be intact. While you won’t get a warranty with the bank or lender, the existing warranties that came with the vehicle can transfer to a new owner. 

Greater Flexibility with Car Choices 

When you were working, driving the kids around, etc., you may have been limited on the types of vehicles you could drive. Today, you probably don’t need that minivan with built-in tablets and sliding doors. You may only need a vehicle for practical purposes – getting from Point A to Point B. This opens up many possibilities. For example, you can buy a repo that’s in good condition but has a lot of miles. 

As you can see, repo cars are worth considering for retirees. They are affordable and do the job of providing you with reliable transportation. Before buying a repo, always do your research and inspect the car. We recommend bringing along someone who knows cars if you don’t. To browse the repo vehicles in your state, visit RepoFinder.com today. 

checking for used car problems

Used Car Problems You’ll Want to Avoid

Buying a used vehicle can be a stressful experience, especially when you’re not sure what to look for. Things get even more complicated with repossessions because they do not come with a warranty. Whatever problems the repo has will become yours to fix. Many issues can be fixed but there are some you’ll want to avoid. 

To ensure you are making a good decision, always inspect the vehicle you’re going to bid on and take a friend with you, preferably someone who understands cars. This way, you have a second set of eyes and ears picking up on things you might miss. Below are used car problems we recommend avoiding. 

Inoperative Gauges or Warning Lights 

Make sure the warning lights and gauges work properly. You’ll need these lights to tell you if something in the car needs immediate attention. If you see the lights come on, this means they’re working, though you probably need to address an issue like low tire pressure, low oil pressure or power steering problems. 

Major Structural Damage 

Minor body damage that has been professionally repaired shouldn’t be a big deal. But major body damage is a different issue. Damage from car accidents that bend the frame or structure can be difficult and expensive to repair. Even if you were to get them fixed, there’s a possibility that you and your passengers wouldn’t be properly protected in a car crash. Bottom line: avoid repos with major body damage. 

Flood Damage 

Another type of damage to avoid is flood damage. Rising water can be just as damaging as a severe crash because it can create rust and mold in the interior. Aside from damaging the carpeting, insulation and upholstery, water can also cause corrosion in the electrical connections. Some signs to look for include mold, rust and mud in unlikely places.

Missing Titles 

As long as you purchase the repo from a reputable seller, you should have no problem getting the title. The bank, lender or credit union that owns the vehicle will release the title once you pay for the vehicle. However, we do not recommend buying a repo without the title, even if it seems like a good deal. Otherwise, there’s always a chance that the true owner could come back and claim the car. 

The best way to avoid bringing home a used car with lots of problems is by inspecting it before buying it. Bring along a mechanic, or at least someone who knows a lot about cars. This way, you can look over the vehicle and make sure nothing obvious stands out. To shop for repossessions in your area, visit RepoFinder.com

fixing a common car problem

Common Car Problems You Can Fix on Your Own

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

When buying a used car, there’s always a chance that you’ll inherit some problems. Most car buyers are aware of this but recognize they’re getting a much lower price on the vehicle than if they were to buy it new. The hope is that any problems that do turn up will be minor and easy/inexpensive to fix. 

Even though used cars don’t have the same warranties as new cars, dealerships will often provide a limited warranty on some or all of the vehicle’s components. When buying a repossession, this is not the case. You buy the car “as-is” and that’s that. Whatever problems the vehicle has will become yours. 

This is not to say that all repossessed cars, trucks and RVs have problems. Many are actually in great condition and only require light cleaning and routine maintenance. Below are the most common car problems you can fix on your own. Don’t let them scare you out of a great repo purchase! 

Replace Dead Battery 

If the repo you’re inspecting isn’t running, it might need a new battery. Batteries are reasonable and can be replaced on your own. Here are a few ways to tell if the battery is dead or close to dying: 

  • The engine cranks but doesn’t start. 
  • The car starts but is sluggish. 
  • The engine starts but the interior lights don’t turn on. 
  • Jumpstarting the battery works. 

If it’s not the battery giving the repo vehicle trouble, it could be the alternator, which will need to be fixed by a professional. Alternators run from around $500 to $1,000. 

Install New Bulbs 

It’s possible that the repo will have non-working lights. You can change out any non-headlight bulbs (e.g., license plate, side marker, fog lights) by removing the retaining screws, pulling out the old bulbs and replacing them with new bulbs. Car headlights can be more difficult to remove and replace, but referring to the owner’s manual will likely provide you with the direction you need. 

Switch Out the Air Filter 

Air filters trap dirt and debris that could damage internal engine parts. They are often checked and replaced during routine oil changes, though it’s very likely that the previous owner didn’t do this. Inspect the air filter during your initial inspection. If it blocks 50% or more light, it will need to be replaced. 

Touch Up Chipped Paint 

It’s common for repossessed vehicles to have chipped auto paint from sitting outdoors. Fortunately, it’s easy to touch up auto paint without it looking shoddy. Clean the chip with wax and grease remover (purchased from the auto store). When dry, dip the applicator in paint and dab it onto the chip. After a month, apply wax to the area. The vehicle will look good as new! 

Fix a Leaky Sunroof

If the repo you’re interested in has a leaky sunroof, don’t be discouraged. It’s probably leaking because the sunroof drains are clogged. To fix this, locate the sunroof drains and clean out any debris that is stuck in them. There is protocol to follow on this, as you don’t want to damage the drain tubes. But, it’s an easy job you can do yourself. 

These are just some of the things you can fix on your own, so you shouldn’t let them deter you from an otherwise good repo purchase. To browse repossessions in your area, visit RepoFinder.com and click on your state!