How to Buy Wrecked Cars From Insurance Companies

How to Buy Wrecked Cars From Insurance Companies
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Purchasing a wrecked car from an insurance company might be a way to get a good deal on a vehicle. However, insurance companies sell vehicles that have not only been wrecked, but also completely totaled. This occurs when the cost to repair the vehicle is greater than its salvage value, which forces the insurance company to take possession of the vehicle. You will need to apply the philosophy of "Buyer Beware" in this type of transaction. If you are still interested in finding an insurance company vehicle, there are a few resources you can utilize.

Conduct an Internet search for the companies who host salvaged vehicle auctions. Companies such as IAA, ADESA and Salvage Direct (all three are listed in the resource section at the end of this article) hold auctions at locations that are usually near large cities.

Review the descriptions of the vehicles available for auction. The vehicle description should include details regarding the condition of the vehicle and may also indicate the reason for why the vehicle is classified as salvaged. This is an important piece of information, as it will provide the perspective buyer with insight into the vehicle's history.

Pay special attention to any listed limitations on who can participate in the auction. Some states have laws that prevent individuals who are not in the auto industry from purchasing salvaged cars at auction. This issue had led to debate, as some of those states have recently considered legislation to open up the auctions to members of the public.

Check to see if the auction will be conducted online. Online auctions can provide an excellent opportunity to participate in an auction even though you are located a significant distance away. Some auctioneers may charge a fee for accessing the online auctions.


  • Another way to purchase salvaged vehicles is to visit online dealers who offer access to salvage vehicles.