Category Archives: used cars

Should I Buy Stolen And Recovered Cars?

There Are Lots Of Stolen and Recovered Cars In the US

In the United States, over 700,000 cars are stolen each year. The authorities recover an average of 46% of those vehicles.  That percentage varies by state: while Alabama has only a 28% percent recovery rate, Washington State had 71% and Utah, 63%. As a general rule,  agencies must classify as Motor Vehicle Theft all cases where automobiles are taken by persons not having lawful access ”even though the vehicles are later abandoned”.

 When a vehicle is stolen, the insurance company is (usually) alerted along with the authorities. If the car is not recovered by the next 3 weeks to a month, the insurance company will consider the vehicle as a write-off and the pay the value of the car to the insured. If the car appears after that period, the insurance company will take possession and issue a salvage title for the car. At that point, the car is considered a “stolen and recovered” vehicle and is given a theft recovered salvage title.

Salvage cars are normally those that have damages that are equal or exceed the cost to safely repair. The purpose of titling the car as salvage is to alert potential future buyers that the car has sustained damage. However, with stolen vehicles, insurers are also looking at different factors, including the time from theft until recovery. The reason is simple: uncertainty.  An insurance company does not know whether the car was driven while in possession and control of the criminal(s). Car thieves aren’t exactly known for taking care of the cars they steal unless they are going to export it somewhere, for example.  

Buying A Stolen And Recovered Car Could Be A Good Deal!

Despite its uncertainty, buying a salvage titled car that has been stolen can be a winning proposition, compared to other salvage title vehicles. Cars involved in collisions may have serious structural issues – particularly around the frame/unibody – that are not apparent at first inspection. Cars in floods can have all sorts of issues that appear months after purchase. On the other hand, a stolen and recovered car could be in pretty good shape compared to those in collisions or floods. Remember that the insurance company has written it off because of reasons having nothing to do with actual damage.

Be Careful When Buying Stolen and Recovered Cars At Auctions

Nissan Altima Theft recovery that was vandalised

“Vandalism”

Here comes the big caveat. Like everything else involving salvage cars: exercise a lot of caution and do your due diligence. Check to see if the car has been stripped or vandalized. Run the VIN number to make sure there aren’t any accidents listed on the title. Have the car inspected by a trusted mechanic.  Are the wheels off? Check for frame damage. If possible, get the police report from the theft and recovery unit of the police department. Did the thieves abandon the car? For how long? Did the police impound it? Where was the impound yard? Was the car found near where it was stolen? Ask the right questions and do the necessary inspection work to avoid future problems. 

Where Can I Buy Theft Recovered Cars Online?

You can buy stolen and recovered cars like this KIA.

Stolen and Recovered!

Now that you are ready, you can find a big selection of salvage cars at Copart auctions. Sign up to bid through brokers who have categories for recovered theft vehicle auctions. Depending on the state, there are restrictions on who can buy a salvage title car, and brokers allow ordinary people (i.e. not car dealers) to bid on these cars. Registration is fairly easy, and once you are done you can go ahead and start searching and bidding on recovered stolen cars.  

  

  

 

How To Get A Salvage Car Ready For The Road Again – Part 1

Salvage Title Automobiles

Salvage Honda Accord

A salvage title vehicle is one that has been written off by the insurance company because the cost to repair the salvage car exceeds its estimated value. This will vary from state to state, but for the most part, that number is over 60% of the value of the salvage car. At that point, the insurance company will write-off the car, pay the claim and request a salvage title for the car.

A salvage title vehicle is also considered a “branded title”. It informs potential buyers that the vehicle was written off by insurance due to collision, theft, flood, hail, and vandalism, among other reasons. This tells authorities that the car is not street legal; it can not be driven on the road.   Salvage title vehicles cannot be driven in other states as well, with each Department of Motor Vehicle recognizing the other State’s certification.

Rebuildable Vs Non-Rebuildable Salvage Title Car

Many of these salvage cars can be made roadworthy. One important exception is that certain cars titled as “for parts only” or “salvaged nonrebuildable” cannot be rebuilt.  The issuing state has made a determination that the car in question is only good for parts and should be eventually scrapped.

For cars with a salvage “rebuildable” designation, it means that they can be repaired and put on the road again. However, the stigma of a salvage title vehicle will always remain with the vehicle. That means it will be hard to finance or insure, and it will never attain the value of a used car.   

Vette Sold For Scrap Metal

Nonrebuildable Corvette

Rebuildable Corvette

How To Certify The Rebuilt Salvage Car

The process itself is fairly similar, with some variations by state. If you have a salvage title automobile,  you have to repair it and pass state inspection. In a few states, you first have to get permission to perform the repairs. In a large number of states any individual can perform the work, in others, it has to be performed by a licensed mechanic. Make sure you check state rules. Bottom line: get the work done making sure the repairs are done by the book!

When you are doing the repairs, keep in mind that many states also require documentation of the whole process. That can mean pictures, from before, during and after the work done. It also means all receipts for parts. The reason behind that is to make sure parts off of stolen cars aren’t used in rebuilding cars. Best practice is for the person doing the work to fully document and photograph the repairs. That will pay off at inspection time.   Not only that, but it can also help with financing, insurance and subsequent sale of the vehicle. You show what was wrong with the car and what you did to make the car roadworthy. 

Make sure to read Part 2, where we will dive into the actual inspection.

Salvage Cars a Collector’s Treasure

28751633_2Everyone loves a great trash to treasure or recycling story, but having the bragging rights to how you turned a salvage car into a collector’s treasure will be a story that you tell over and over again! For the avid car enthusiast, finding a diamond in the rough in a salvage car and rebuilding it into a gem is a challenging and rewarding experience.

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Cars Labeled as Total Losses Can be Your Gain!

Screen capture from a salvage auction website.If you are looking for parts for your car or a vehicle that you can restore, why not consider buying a salvage car? New parts can be quite expensive and new cars even more so; however, salvage vehicles can be purchased at a mere fraction of the price of new. Many cars labeled as total losses run great and have only minor cosmetic damage. Continue reading

Get the History of Any Vehicle You Like

repo cars for sale, flood damage cars You may have heard about salvage cars, but are hesitant to purchase one because you are unsure of its history. With Copart’s easy vehicle VIN check tool, you can quickly get the history of any flood damaged or repo cars for sale that you like. A Vehicle History and Title Report contains the full history of cars sold through Copart as reported by instaVIN. Continue reading

Find Plenty of Cars in Fantastic Condition

repairable salvage cars for sale, auction cars In today’s difficult times, it seems like everyone is looking for ways to save, especially when it comes to cars. If you need a vehicle to get back and forth to work or school but do not have a lot of cash, you should consider purchasing a salvage car. There are many benefits to choosing salvage auction cars, and listed below are just a few. Continue reading

The Right Time to Buy a Flood-Damaged Vehicle

wrecked cars for sale, flood cars for sale, salvage auctionIf you are looking for a car for short-term usage, why not consider a flood-damaged vehicle? There is no reason that you should have to spend a lot of money for a car if you are only going to need it for a short period of time, and many flood-damaged cars still run great.

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Find a Dream Classic Car For Your Next Project

used cars, used cars for saleCruising down the road in a vehicle restored by hand is every car enthusiast’s dream. For some, that dream is out of reach because of the hobby’s costs. However, by buying used cars at a salvage auction, living that dream doesn’t have to leave you frustrated, pressed for time and flat broke. Whether you want to completely restore a vehicle or find a classic to use for parts to restore the project you already have, online salvage auctions are the answer.

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Catch a Ride Fit for Florida Living

Bug2With swamps, beaches and woodlands, Florida offers terrain to suit everyone’s taste. To find vehicles fit for Florida’s varied landscape and weather, a search of salvage cars in Florida will help. For cruising, off-roading and hauling, skip the dealership and get what you need at salvageautosauction.com.

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