Cars are expensive things. To get on the road, you not only have to buy the car, you have to purchase insurance, road tax and then you have to fill up the tank with what seems like pure liquid money. Cars are not purchases that should be taken lightly. The main expense is the car itself; obviously how much you spend depends greatly on your needs.
It’s an upset that the cars value depreciates as soon as it leaves the show room, but the average car life expectancy floats around the 8 year mark, so you can sit tight in the knowledge that your car “should” last for that long or even longer. The 8 year estimate doesn’t factor in other problems though, for example other drivers on the road. Other drivers can cause huge problems and I often say that if I were the only driver on the road I’d never have a driving problem. For example; you are quite happy cruising along on the road and a car cruising along in the opposite direction is quite happy too, it has a lapse in judgement and swerves to avoid a pothole and hits the right corner of your vehicle, you have a problem. Sure the damage might be repairable, but what if it isn’t? What if you cost of repair becomes more than the actual value of the car? That’s what the industry calls a “write-off”.
You have a few options, you could sell the car in it’s damaged state if you don’t want to go through the insurance hassles. Accept the settlement from the insurers or you could try and repair the car yourself with parts found auction web sites.
I know, I know, you didn’t ask for any of these options, you’d much rather still be sat in your car happily cruising along, but that’s life and “stuff happens”.
Maybe the opposite is more appropriate to your interests: Maybe you are in the car industry and are a specialist at repairing cars and fixing the damage. Maybe such an accident as detailed above is good news for you. For example, said damaged car has been paid for and taken away by the insurers at the market value, the owner is happy with their new cheque that covers the costs (less their insurance excess if they were to blame) and then the car goes… where? A salvage yard? To be repaired for resale? To auction? Possibly, or it goes to a car salvage specialist. Some car salvage companies will “break” the car into parts and sell the parts individually, which sounds like a lot of effort, but profits can be made in the long run. Other car salvage specialists may provide auctions to the damaged but salvageable cars themselves. These auctions, more often than not, will have fantastic bargains to be had if you are able to repair vehicles and have them looking “as good as new”.
The price for a damaged car is obviously not going to be even close to its real market value. That’s why, given some time and effort, you could make some real money buying, repairing, and selling on the cars. It is a big industry for a lot of people, but it isn’t really publicised. It’s almost like an unknown money maker. The resale of the cars can be hugely beneficial, but you would need to know if there is a good amount of possible profit in each car. How much do I want to spend on the car in its damaged state? How much is the car worth in a good condition? How many hours will the repair take? Have I got the skills or employees to carry out the repairs? How cheaply can I buy the parts and where would I get them from (eBay is a very good source for used car parts)? Where can I get a section re-spray from if needed or would I do it myself? Where would I sell the repaired car? Those are the main questions I would ask myself every time I’d take on a new project.
Maybe you don’t want to buy said cars to resell; maybe you are looking for a new car to suit your own needs. No matter which way you look at it, buying a damaged vehicle from car salvage auctions could save you money. Sure it would be more effort than buying a car from a dealer but you won’t have the satisfaction of “fixing up” the car, if that is what interests you. Remember that buying and selling is big business and it’s the backbone of most economies, be wise, be smart, make some good choices and you will be rewarded.
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