Always take a photo of the vehicle identification number (VIN) toward the base of the windshield on cars you want to bid on at auctions. After that, walk around and check places like door jams, under the hood, and inside trunk lids, where stickers with this number may also appear. If the numbers don’t match up, or are missing entirely it’s best to move on, because there’s probably a really bad reason why it’s like that.
People were on their cellphones taking bids from afar, others were desperately eyeing the cars to see if the panels and bumper covers were in decent enough shape to make some cash at the current bidding price. Though there were only a handful of folks at this little auction, the dynamic—the subtle things people did to make sure they made a sound buying decision—was enthralling.
As you browse the government auction sites above, you'll notice some link you to additional sites run by private contractors. These contractors have legitimate relationships with the government, but bidder beware: other private companies will try to make their auctions seem like government auctions as a marketing ploy. Always start with the legitimate links provided by the government itself. Good luck!
To bid, you'll mostly need to go to an auction house on the day and bid in person. However, some auction houses now offer live internet or telephone bidding. You'll have to register to bid with the auction house, whether you're bidding in person or not. You should be able to find out when the next police auction will be held by visiting the auction house's website.
Policeauctions.com is run by a private company and is not affiliated with the government. It provides information and links to government-run auctions, but the site itself is part of the wholesale liquidation auction market. Items are sold as is and sometimes there are fees. You have to register to bid and get information, but it doesn’t cost anything to join the site.
Another problem that you might face with local police auctions is finding information related to their occurrence. You can find the information on websites that deals particularly in government auctions. After acquiring the information of its timings, you need to call the local police department, and register your bidder number. Bids only from registered bidders are considered in these seized car auctions. It is advisable to obtain Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) prior to bidding for the car and run it through the Carfax website. It helps in checking the past history and allows you to buy a clean car.
"At a government auction it's, say, a county that has 30 or 40 police cruisers it needs to get rid of. And they want to sell all of it," Lang says. "All the vehicles have known histories—how they were maintained, used and fixed, and their mileage is virtually always honest. You'll know what you're getting." Still, you don't get to drive a car before you bid on it. So you'd better have a sharp eye. Make that a sharp, trained, cynical, wary, pessimistic and rabidly suspicious eye.
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Lot: 1 - ST. LOUIS CARDINALS MULTI-SIGNED HALL OF FAMERS ST. LOUIS CARDINALS MULTI-SIGNED HALL OF FAMERS HOME PLATE WITH PITCHING RUBBER Home plate signed by 7 St. Louis Cardinal HOFers including Jack Buck ('87), Stan Musial ('69), Bob Gibson ('81), Enos Slaughter ('85), Lou Brock ('85), Red Schoendienst Lot: 2 - CHRIS CARPENTER ST. LOUIS CARDINALS SIGNED 2006 CHRIS CARPENTER ST. [ View Full Listing ]