Tag Archives: repossessed cars

test driving a vehicle

Can I Test Drive a Repossessed Car?

A common question repo sellers often hear from customers is whether or not they can test drive the vehicle. It’s a great question to ask, especially when people are used to going to the dealerships and driving around the vehicles they want before buying them.

However, shopping for repossessed cars is a bit different. If you’re planning on buying a repossessed car, here’s everything you need to know about taking the vehicle for a spin. 

Sorry, But Test Drives Usually Aren’t Allowed 

Unfortunately, most sellers won’t allow you to test drive a repo vehicle. All you can do is sit in the car, turn it on and possibly put it into gear. Why is this the case? Are they trying to hide something? 

Actually, no. The main reason why auctions won’t let you drive the vehicle is because it’s a liability. When test driving a car from a dealership, it’s typically the dealer’s responsibility to cover any damages that may occur. Most dealers have a fleet policy that covers all of their vehicles. 

On the other hand, banks, lenders and credit unions don’t have fleet insurance. Remember, they loan money – they don’t sell cars! Not only that, but they don’t know what type of condition the car is really in. That’s why they’re selling it as-is. When you sign the paperwork, you are waiving these rights. But until then, driving it under the seller is a liability. 

You Can (and Should) Inspect the Repo Car 

Even though you can’t test drive the used vehicle, you can have it inspected. You can identify a lot of problems this way. Many sellers also allow bidders to start the car and put it into gear, but not all do, so be sure to ask these questions beforehand. 

We recommend bringing along someone who knows cars if you don’t. This can be a knowledgable friend or professional mechanic. They’ll know what to look for and can prevent you from getting too excited over a car that’s not the right fit. You certainly don’t want to overpay for a car with problems. Beware of sellers who won’t let you come and see the vehicle. 

Find Reputable Repo Sellers at RepoFinder 

RepoFinder has a huge selection of cars, trucks, SUVs and recreational vehicles that are waiting for their new owners. Our sellers are reputable and include trusted banks, lenders and credit unions. When you find a few vehicles that you like, schedule an inspection to see them in person! 

Black Book of Values

Black Book Car Value: What Does this Mean?

There are a number of “book values” out there to help car owners get an accurate price on their vehicle. They were given the name of “book values” because back in the day, car values were printed on paper. Today, they’re available online. In this post, we’re going to cover Black Book values, but don’t forget that there are also red and blue ones just like Kelley Blue Book. 

What is the Black Book? 

The Black Book is a valuation website that provides car values and other information for dealers. It’s used to determine trade-in values, look at wholesale prices for auctions and decide on prices for used vehicles. Everyday consumers aren’t usually able to get Black Book prices, though there are similar resources online such as Edmunds

The difference between the Black Book and Blue Book is that the Black Book is designed for dealerships and the Blue Book is designed for consumers. For example, a consumer would use Kelley’s Blue Book to determine their trade-in value, while a dealership would use the Black Book to establish the value of a trade-in. 

Both the Blue Book and the Black Book evaluate millions of data points from dealerships and auctions to determine pricing. 

How Accurate is the Black Book? 

Generally speaking, the valuations are more specific in the Black Book. It’s updated more often and it collects data from wholesale auctions both in person and online. These numbers are then compared to the dealer advertised prices. Subscriptions are required to access Black Book access, though the public does have access to the price search features through third party sites. 

Do I Need to Know Black Book Values to Find the Best Prices? 

When shopping for used cars, you do not need to know any Black Book values. However, we do recommend knowing Blue Book numbers. These values are meant for consumers who are shopping for used vehicles. They can determine how much they should be paying for the vehicles they’re interested in, as well as what their trade-in is worth. 

Overall, the Blue Book is a trusted resource for consumers. It pulls information from a wide variety of sources, including weekly auto auctions and car selling sites. An algorithm then sorts through this information to make sense of it. The prices are posted and then shared with consumers. 

However, Kelley Blue Book is still just a guide – not an end-all-be-all. Many people think Kelley Blue Book sets its prices but it actually tracks prices. And sometimes, the information is outdated because it takes time to collect, organize and report. As long as you’re aware of this, you can use the Blue Book to your advantage. 

RepoFinder Has the Best Prices on Repo Cars

RepoFinder has a huge selection of used vehicles. These vehicles are mostly owned by banks and credit unions because their previous owner defaulted on their payments. With so many repo cars to choose from, you can find the perfect vehicle at an affordable price. Shop with us today and find a vehicle that meets your needs and budget. 

buying as-is car

What Does it Mean to Buy a Car in As-Is Condition?

When buying a car, you might come across vehicles sold in as-is condition. While the description is pretty obvious – you’re buying a car in the exact condition it’s in – it’s still important to know what this means and what you can expect with your purchase. Most importantly, don’t let buying as-is scare you away. If you’re looking for a great discount on a car, this might be the way to go! 

What Does As-Is Mean in the Car Industry?

You can buy many things in as-is condition – a home, a retail product or a car. All it means is that the item is being sold in its current condition with all issues known and unknown. In other words, if there are problems with the vehicle, the seller is not responsible for them. 

In terms of a vehicle, it’s also important to know that buying as-is means the car likely doesn’t have a warranty. (With newer repo cars, there is a chance the warranty is still intact.) Again, any problems that turn up with the vehicle are not the responsibility of the seller. You’ll have to pay for them out of pocket. 

What’s the Benefit of Buying an As-Is Vehicle? 

Because the buyer is taking a risk, as-is vehicles are discounted. For example, RepoFinder has a huge database of repossessed vehicles being sold by banks, credit unions and other lenders. They are selling their vehicles in as-is condition but for a discount. 

Many of the vehicles they’re selling are in good condition. They might need some basic maintenance, but nothing too elaborate. By purchasing these types of vehicles at a discount, you’ll have enough money to pay for the repairs and maintenance as well as have lower car payments each month. It’s a win-win on both sides! 

What are Some of the Risks of Buying As-Is?

Of course, buying anything as-is always comes with some risk. If you’re unhappy with the car or it ends up having significant problems, you can’t just drive it back to the dealership for a refund. This is why it pays to be a smart shopper. Look at the pictures, ask the seller questions, research the types of problems the particular car has (if any) and inspect the vehicle before signing the paperwork.  

Additionally, when you schedule an inspection, bring along someone who knows cars, whether it’s a mechanic or a knowledgeable friend. They’ll know some of the obvious things to look for. Once you’ve done your research, you can place a comfortable bid that will get you the car you want at a fair price. 

Shop for As-Is Vehicles Today 

RepoFinder makes it easy to shop for as-is vehicles. Browse our website for cars in your area that are being sold by credit unions and banks. They’re motivated sellers who are often willing to negotiate the best prices! 

parking lot of cars

What Happens When Cars are Repossessed?

When a person has trouble paying their auto loan, they can face repossession. Repossession laws vary by state, but in most cases, cars can be repossessed anywhere and without notification. Usually, the owner will have an opportunity to reclaim the car by catching up on payments or paying off the loan. If they’re unable to do this, the lender will keep the car and sell it to recoup their losses. 

Banks and credit unions are motivated sellers. They are in the business to make money by borrowing money – not selling motorcycles or sports cars. So, if you’re looking to buy a car at a discount, it’s worth looking into repo inventory sold directly through banks and lenders. You can get a car at an affordable price and possibly negotiate something lower! 

How Long Does it Take to Repossess a Car? 

From a legal standpoint, a lender can repossess a car after missing just one payment. It all depends on the state and the terms of the auto loan. But while they might seem eager, lenders don’t want their borrowers to default on their payments. And they don’t want to repossess cars, either. This process costs money. 

Unfortunately, not all vehicle owners can or want to catch up on their payments. If they can’t reclaim their car after the 30-day holding period, the banks will list it for sale. 

Where are Repossessions Sold? 

Lenders typically use third parties to repo and store their vehicles. Because they have to pay for storage fees, they want to move repossessions quickly. If the owner is unable to catch up on their payments, the banks will sell to one of the following: 

Dealership

Those who have a dealer’s license can purchase repos directly from an auction. Dealerships do this all the time and have the resources to inspect, clean and repair the vehicles. However, it’s important to know that these cars are not true repos, at least to the consumer. They are more like used vehicles because they have gone through an inspection and cost more. 

Private auction

Another option is for banks to sell their repossessed inventory through an auction where private sellers are welcome to place a bid. Private auctions give priority to their members who pay a fee to use their services. You don’t need a dealer’s license to join a private auction, but you will need to pay a fee. 

Public auction

Public auctions are open to the public. Typically, you can browse the inventory for free, but if you want to place a bid, you’ll need to pay a nominal fee. Public auctions tend to have a wide inventory of used cars, but you might have to dig through them to find what you want. Good cars go fast, so we always tell customers to be patient as well. 

Shop for a Repo Vehicle Today 

Repossessions are just like other vehicles, though some do require a bit more work and maintenance to get them up to speed. If their previous owner wasn’t making their payments, they probably weren’t taking their car in for oil changes and tire rotations, either. As long as you’re willing to put this into your new ride, you can walk away with an affordable car with all the features you want! 

getting financing for a car

How Do Loans from a Credit Union Work?

When you need to borrow money to purchase a used vehicle, a credit union can be a good option. Banks and credit unions are both financial institutions, but there are differences between them. Banks are for-profit institutions while credit unions are not-for-profit. This allows credit unions to offer lower interest rates and better customer service. 

If you are looking to buy a used or repossessed car, a credit union might be the best option for you. Let’s look at the benefits to getting an auto loan from a credit union and the steps to take. 

Benefits of Getting an Auto Loan from a Credit Union 

Credit unions use their non-profit status to pass savings along to their members. This is why interest rates and other fees are typically lower than what you would find at a bank. Not a member of a credit union? That’s no problem. Most eligibility requirements are based on where you work, where you live and the types of organizations you belong to. 

Once you do become a member, you can take advantage of the credit union’s services. Here are some of the benefits to expect from a credit union car loan:

  • Lower interest rates 
  • Higher approval odds 
  • Lower loan minimums 
  • Lower fees 
  • Better customer service 

Steps for Getting a Credit Union Car Loan 

Getting an auto loan from a credit union is very similar to getting one from the bank. There are generally four steps you’ll have to go through and everything is streamlined for your convenience. 

Apply for a loan 

The first step is to apply for a loan. You can do this online or at a local branch. Applying online is fast and convenient, but if you have questions, it’s best to fill out the application in person. Once you get your pre-approval, you can use this for negotiating power. 

Repossessed cars and trucks are sold by motivated sellers, so having a pre-approval will work in your favor. You can often negotiate a lower price because the seller knows you already have financing lined up. 

Provide proof of insurance 

You and your lender both want to protect your vehicle, and the way to do this is through insurance. You may need to provide proof that you have full-coverage comprehension and collision insurance to protect your vehicle. 

Show proof of income 

Your lender will also want to make sure that you can afford to pay back the loan. In the case of repossessions, the banks and lenders have already had one owner default on the vehicle so they certainly don’t want another. Expect to provide copies of your pay stubs or tax returns from the past two years. 

Finalize your loan 

Once all of the information and documentation are received, you’ll finalize your loan through a credit union representative. At this time, you’ll be told how much you qualify for, your interest rate and any other related terms and conditions. If you agree with everything, you’ll sign the loan agreement and take home your new car! 

RepoFinder has a huge inventory of repo vehicles waiting for new owners. Many of them come from banks and credit unions, which are highly motivated sellers. Browse our website today and negotiate with the sellers for the best possible prices.

paying cash for car

What are the Benefits of Paying Cash for a Car?

Few people have the ability to pay cash for a car. But if you are one of the lucky ones who has saved up enough cash, you can enjoy a wide range of benefits by paying in full. To keep your costs in line, consider shopping for a repossessed or bank-owned vehicle that will cost far less than what you’ll pay at the dealership. 

Let’s cover the reasons why paying for a repo car in cash is worth considering. 

No Money Loss to Interest 

Interest is a fee charged to you when borrowing money from someone else. Currently, interest rates on 60-month auto loans are around 5.27 percent. Rates depend on your credit score, age of the vehicle, term length of the loan and other factors. By paying cash, you’re using your own money and don’t have to pay interest. 

No Monthly Payments 

Once the “new car feeling” wears off, people are stuck paying a high monthly payment for the next five years or so. However, when you pay cash for a vehicle, you’re paying for everything upfront. While you might have to take from your savings, you can put money back every month because you won’t be spending it on a car payment. 

Better Negotiations 

Banks and credit unions selling repossessed cars are motivated sellers. They are often willing to negotiate and come down on price, unless a car has a lot of bids. If you have the cash to buy the vehicle outright, the seller will likely accept a lower offer. They’re about to receive payment in full and they’re not taking the risk that you’ll default on your payments. 

Avoid Being Underwater 

Cars depreciate extraordinarily fast. Even after making payments for several years, you’ll probably still owe more than what your car is worth. This is a hard cycle to be in, especially if you want to sell and upgrade to something else. When you pay cash, the car is entirely yours. You don’t have to worry about being underwater, and you can trade in your car at a later date and get something for it. 

Shop for Affordable Cars Today 

Paying for a car in cash isn’t for everyone, but it is definitely something you may want to consider if you want to avoid interest and high monthly payments. When you shop for used cars at RepoFinder.com, you’ll have access to hundreds of vehicles in all makes, models, conditions and price ranges. 

These cars are sold by banks and credit unions, so you can often negotiate an even better deal, especially when paying in cash. And, if you prefer to finance your purchase, you’re in the right spot! Banks and credit unions will work with you to get your monthly payments affordable. 

Start your search for cheap, used cars in good condition at RepoFinder.com.

pickup truck

Seized vs Repossessed vs Government Owned: What’s the Difference?

When shopping around for a used vehicle, you have more options than just the dealership. You can shop easy and get a great deal when you consider seized, repossessed or government owned vehicles. But first, it helps to know the difference between these types of vehicles, where they come from and how to get the best prices. 

What are Seized Cars? 

Each year, thousands of cars are seized by the banks, the government and law enforcement agencies. Many of these vehicles are put up for auction and sold to the public. Some are purchased by dealerships, cleaned up and then sold for a higher price. If you’re looking for a bargain, you’ll want to stick to vehicles that are being sold directly from the banks or lenders. 

Cars seized by the banks or government don’t always have a lot of information on them. Therefore, it’s up to you to do your research, look at the images and ask questions. You can also learn more about the vehicle by understanding what type of car it is and where it came from. 

Types of Repossessed Vehicles 

Cars are sold at auction for different reasons. Oftentimes, they were taken from their previous owner who defaulted on their payments. In some states, it takes just two or three missed payments to start the repossession process. Banks and lenders work quickly because they need to recoup their losses. Other times, the cars come from law enforcement or government agencies. More details are often known about these vehicles. 

Let’s look closer at the different types of repo vehicles: 

  • Seized cars. These cars are taken by law enforcement for having too many traffic violations. Or, they can be confiscated during a raid. These vehicles are usually well-maintained by the owner. In fact, the IRS and courts tend to seize luxury vehicles in good condition because they’re worth more.
  • Repossessed car. Repo cars are seized by lenders who haven’t been receiving payments. These cars are sometimes in poor quality because the owners couldn’t afford their loan, and therefore, probably couldn’t afford maintenance and repairs either. But a lot of great repos are out there! 
  • Previously-owned government cars. Government-owned cars were owned by government agencies that no longer need them. Most agencies update their cars often so these cars tend to be newer and in better quality. 

Where Can I Find Seized Vehicles? 

There are a number of places where you can find repossessed, seized or previously-owned government vehicles. You can start your search on government auction sites. Many offer free trials, but you generally have to pay to become a member and place a bid. 

For the best bargains and widest inventory, check out RepoFinder.com. We have a huge database of repossessed cars, trucks, minivans, RVs, ATVs, motorcycles, boats, small aircraft and more. We provide information on all of our vehicles, as well as plenty of images. Our site is free to use, and to unlock all of the features, you can upgrade to RepoFinder Pro for just $4.95 a month – cancel anytime. 

To find bank-owned vehicles at great prices, RepoFinder.com has what you need!

red repo truck

What are the Cheapest Cars to Insure?

When buying a new car, it’s a good idea to consider how much your insurance rates will be. To help you out, there are several studies that provide this research so that consumers know which cars will be most affordable. Fortunately, knowing this information can help you save hundreds of dollars a year on car insurance! 

What Determines the Price of an Auto Insurance Policy? 

First, it’s helpful to know how car insurance is calculated, as it’s not all about the car you drive. Each company has their own formula, which is why rates vary among car insurance companies. However, most companies use the following factors to determine the price of their auto policies: 

  • Your driving record
  • Your credit history  
  • How often you use your car 
  • Where you park your car 
  • Your age and gender
  • The type of car you drive

What Cars Have the Cheapest Insurance Rates? 

Even though there are many factors that influence what you pay for insurance, the type of car you buy can make a big difference on your rates. If you’re trying to keep your monthly expenses down, you’ll want to be aware of the most and least expensive cars to insure. And as always, compare rates with multiple carriers. 

Generally speaking, minivans and small trucks are the cheapest to insure compared to other vehicles. On the other hand, large sedans, sports vehicles and luxury cars have some of the most expensive insurance rates. New cars are also more expensive to insure because they’re worth more. 

Specifically, here is a breakdown of the ten least expensive vehicles to insure

  1. Honda CR-V – Small SUV
  2. Chrysler Pacifica – Minivan
  3. Honda Odyssey – Minivan
  4. Ford F-Series – Standard pickup truck
  5. Toyota RAV4 – Small SUV
  6. Chevrolet Equinox – Small SUV
  7. Chevrolet Colorado – Small pickup truck
  8. Toyota Tundra – Standard pickup truck
  9. Honda Ridgeline – Small pickup truck 
  10. Ford Fiesta – Subcompact car

Other Ways to Save on Your Auto Insurance 

Aside from the type of car you buy, there are some other ways to save on car insurance. Bundling your auto insurance with a life or home policy is one of the best ways to get a discount. Also ask the insurance carrier about discounts they offer for safe driving, having no claims, being a good student and having safety features in the vehicle. 

For a great price on vehicles, shop with RepoFinder.com. We have a huge database of cars, small and standard pickup trucks, SUVs and more that are owned by banks or lenders. They don’t want these cars and are motivated to sell them to a new owner! You can get a great deal this way, and if you shop smart, you can save on car insurance, too! 

repo cars

What are the Steps to Buying Repossessed Cars?

When making the decision to buy a repossessed car, the best thing you can do is educate yourself on the process. Even though buying a repo car is similar to buying a used car, there are still some differences to be aware of. The more you know, the better position you’ll be in to make strong bids and take home the car you want.

Below are the steps to follow to make repo car shopping smooth and stress free!

Visit RepoFinder.com 

RepoFinder makes buying a used car easy. We are a directory of banks selling repossessions across the country. You can browse our listings for free and become a member and start bidding for just $4.95 a month! Our site is user-friendly and easy to navigate, making it easy to find valuable information on the cars you’re interested in. 

Narrow Down Your Search 

Make sure you do the proper research when browsing and closing in on a car. You can also filter vehicles by different categories to find something that’s just right for you! Repo car listings include the vehicle information, specifications and features. Most sellers do a good job of posting images, so be sure to examine the photos for the condition of the vehicle, possible damage and more. 

Bid on the Car You Want

Once you find the car you would like to purchase, you will need to bid on the vehicle. The most common is an open bid where all buyers are able to view the highest bid. Sometimes it’s a closed bid, meaning you won’t see what others have offered for the vehicle. Don’t get bid-happy though! Only offer what you feel comfortable and leave some budget for repairs and maintenance. 

Schedule an Inspection

You probably won’t be able to test drive the vehicle for liability reasons, but you should have it inspected. You can hire a mechanic to assess the vehicle or bring along someone who understands cars. If the vehicle is in another state, you’ll have to find an inspection company within that state. The mechanic will provide updates and their analysis of the car. Mechanics may not always find all the issues but their input is critical. 

Pay for the Car

After getting the analysis on the car you recently bid on, you’ll have to complete payment. Buying the car from a credit union is similar to buying from a car dealer or private party. The banks will assist you with the financing, and you’ll have to fill out paperwork and make a down payment. 

Buying a repossessed car is a process that most people may not be as familiar with, but it’s easier than you think! And you can get a great deal by shopping for bank-owned vehicles. Check out RepoFinder’s database today to start viewing the cars we have available! 

first-time driver

How to Save Money on Cars for First-Time Drivers

First-time drivers look forward to buying a car, however, they typically don’t realize how much a new car can cost. Buying a new car off the lot can be very expensive and you may end up regretting your purchase in the future. Fortunately, there are many ways to save money on cars while still getting the features you want. 

Here are some money saving tips that first-time car buyers – teens and college students – can benefit from.

Set a Budget

By setting an appropriate budget, you’re less likely to go overboard on your purchase. The average car depreciates 14% every year, so you certainly don’t want to be in a financial hole for the next 5 years.

To determine how much car you can afford, it’s usually recommended to spend no more than 35% of your pre-tax annual income on a car. Lower is better, but ultimately, you’ll have to decide what you are comfortable spending. You can use this calculator to help establish a sensible budget. 

Assess Your Needs 

It’s not necessary for first-time drivers to own an exotic vehicle. While you might want to get a certain car for bragging rights, this probably isn’t necessary right now. Instead, consider what you need the car for (i.e., to get to work or school), how often you’ll be driving and the types of conditions you’ll be driving in.

For example, if you live in a cold-weather climate, you’ll want to consider cars that are equipped with four wheel drive or an anti-lock braking system. These features make winter driving safer and more comfortable. Also, what will you be using the car for? If you’re simply driving to school and your part-time job, you won’t need a car that’s built for off-roading. Something simple and modest will do. 

Consider a Repo Car

Repo cars are vehicles that have been repossessed due to the owner defaulting on their loan. As with used cars, repo cars are available in different makes, models and conditions. Purchasing a repo car off RepoFinder.com is very similar to purchasing a used car.

Repossessed vehicles are also considerably less than a car from a dealership, offering significant savings. Take your time researching the vehicles and always request an inspection before signing any paperwork. However, do be aware that repo cars aren’t usually available for test drives due to liability reasons. 

Find a Cheap Repo Car Today 

To summarize, there are many unique ways to save money on cars for first-time drivers. Doing your research, being open to all options and shopping for repos are all great ways to save money. Not to mention, you can build good money-saving skills that will reward you long into the future. To find an affordable used car for a new driver, shop with RepoFinder.com today.