You could tell that most people knew each other. It felt like these few dozen bidders were part of an exclusive network of junkyard owners and flip-artists who have been bidding on cars against each other for years. Every now and then, when one guy outbid another, you’d see the losing bidder lean over to a friend and talk shit on the winner. “He just buys cars for the sake of buying them. He probably makes no money,” I heard one guy whisper. Police auctions are full of mysteries and secrets.
First, read the property information and Terms of Sale on the website for the specific property you are interested in.  Attend a scheduled open house.  Register to bid at the auction location the day of sale during the registration period.  You must bring a valid government issued photo ID and the required cashier’s check deposit to register.  A bidder number will be issued upon completion of registration.  Click here to view the bidder registration form. This form can be printed out and completed prior to the auction. You do not need to mail or fax the completed form, just bring it to the auction to register. Forms will also be available at the auction. You should read and understand the Terms of Sale before you bid. Sales personnel at the auction site can answer any questions you may have.
Watch the mood and trend of the crowd in the bidding before your vehicle comes up for sale. I've noticed that at auctions there are frugal crowds and there are spendy crowds. I don't know why this is. I've seen furniture, tools, and kitchen cabinets sell for 10% of retail. But I've also seen them sell at what you'd pay for full retail in a store at the same auction house on different days. There doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to it. Always be prepared to walk away. There'll be another auction in a week or two.
There are a few simple, but necessary, steps to take for anyone interested in purchasing a vehicle through a local public car auction. It is important to know that most auto auctions required registration and corresponding fees. It is usually not free to attend a public car sale. This is to thwart people with non-serious inquiries. Once you have determined where to register, be sure to read the guidelines if it comes with any. Some auctions have their own unique set of instructions to follow.

It is strongly recommended that you attend the open houses/inspections that are scheduled prior to sale. The bidder is invited, urged, and cautioned to inspect the property prior to submitting a bid. Failure to inspect property shall not constitute cause for cancellation of sale. Property will be available for inspection only at the times specified.  At their own expense, potential bidders may have property inspectors examine the property during regularly scheduled open houses.
It is strongly recommended that you attend the open houses/inspections that are scheduled prior to sale. The bidder is invited, urged, and cautioned to inspect the property prior to submitting a bid. Failure to inspect property shall not constitute cause for cancellation of sale. Property will be available for inspection only at the times specified.  At their own expense, potential bidders may have property inspectors examine the property during regularly scheduled open houses.
Cars at public auctions are often those that wouldn't sell at wholesale dealer auctions. Yes, some are flood vehicles, and Hurricane Irene should still be fresh in your mind. Some are cars quickly reconditioned in dealership shops to fill in slow periods when there's otherwise little work to be done. And many are just flat out junk. "A car that goes across the block at a public auction that isn't spewing smoke is often packed with thick racing oil to ensure it doesn't," Lang continues. "Everything at a public auction looks shiny, but shiny doesn't mean much about the quality of the car."
Sign up to receive automatic notification of new auction listings. You can call the regional office of a government agency to get on mailing lists for upcoming government asset sales. Each government or contractor website will also have a registration form to receive notices of new auction listings. It is also possible at these websites to create custom email alerts for particular items coming up for auction or categories of listings.
Several different federal agencies hold government auctions. The General Services Administration is the granddaddy of them all, because it sells on behalf of other departments. When a federal agency no longer needs something — say, a pickup truck — it reports the truck to GSA, which first offers it to other federal agencies and then to state and local governments or nonprofits. If nobody claims the truck, then the GSA auctions it off to the public, and you get your chance at it. 
Identify contractors authorized to hold government auctions. You can obtain auction listings directly from contractors authorized by many government agencies to carry out public auctions. For example, one of the largest online public auction contractors for Federal, state and local government agencies is Bid4Assets, which auctions off surplus property, seized and tax-forfeited assets.
CWS Asset Management and Sales (CWSAMS) is a nationwide company with expertise in the management, marketing and sales of a wide range of assets, specializing in web-based and live auctions. CWSAMS has provided continuous support to the U.S. Department of the Treasury, its legacy agencies, and other public & private entities for the marketing and sale of real and personal property for the past 26 years. An abbreviated list of clients are:
CWS Asset Management and Sales (CWSAMS) is a nationwide company with expertise in the management, marketing and sales of a wide range of assets, specializing in web-based and live auctions. CWSAMS has provided continuous support to the U.S. Department of the Treasury, its legacy agencies, and other public & private entities for the marketing and sale of real and personal property for the past 26 years. An abbreviated list of clients are:
If you're looking for a good deal, you'll find it at online auction websites. Cars, jewelry, clothing, books, homes, and land are all available at bargain prices at these bidding sites with their amazing variety and choice. Collectors — from Star Wars to Disney — will also appreciate these websites, because frequenting them is a great way to increase your collection without breaking the bank.
Private auctions are held on-site at your dealership. Each vehicle is driven either underneath the tent in front of a self-contained mobile operations unit. In some cases we can even transform a building at your dealership into an auction arena. These dealer only auctions are conducted live by an auctioneer and are designed to sell 40-200 vehicles. Operated much like a conventional auto auction, these private auctions are easily adapted to the specific needs of your dealership, with even simulcast sales available.
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