How to Buy Vehicles at Auction, with Wyatt Carter

Tuesday, September 7, 2021 | Blackbird TV

Wyatt Carter of Richmond Auto Auction gives David some tips on how “Joe Public” can buy vehicles at auction.

About this segment of Blackbird TV

Guest: Wyatt Carter, General Manager, Richmond Auto Auction. To learn more about our guest, visit, or call 804-232-7355.

Recorded: May 25, 2021

Published: September 7, 2021

Segment transcript

Everything auto auctions, we’re talking with Wyatt Carter from the Richmond Auto Auction today on Blackbird TV. Hello, Wyatt. Hi, David. How are you? Everything is great. Everything is good. A lot of people don’t understand how you go and buy a car at an auction sale in Blackbird Asset Services business, we sell cars from time to time, but they’re always part of a bankruptcy or they’re part of somebody’s collateral in a commercial loan We don’t really just sell cars, and that’s what you guys do. So I’m I’m your neighbor and I want you to teach me. I’m just, you know, Joe public. How do I come to an auto auction and buy a car? They’re smoking hot deals at the auto auction. How do I get in on it? Well, absolutely. First, first and foremost, find your local public auto auction. Most cities will have somebody who sells vehicles to the public. Make sure you do your homework. I mean, there are some deals that can be out of the auctions but there are also some mistakes that could happen. So make sure you educate yourself on the rules and policies of your local auction. They should have them published, likely on their website. In most cases, you can also pick up the pick out of a packet there at the auction. I recommend that you go and watch an auction ahead of time. Don’t just jump in and throw your hand in the air and hope everything will be OK, because, you know, you might you might get a deal, but you might get burned. So I encourage everybody who’s interested specifically to come to our auction is pleas familiarize yourself with the process, do your homework. We welcome you to bring a mechanic with you. Check out the vehicle, make sure that you know what you’re buying, but also make sure that you are aware of the local auction policies. Make sure you set a budget. Make sure you understand the fees that will be involved when you purchase that vehicle and just come have a good time. Make sure you know what you’re doing and you really can make a purchase a great deal. Do I get to test drive that car, sir? So it depends. Prior to the auction? No, we did not allow test drives. However, if you purchase a vehicle on a green light, that vehicle would be eligible for a test drive. It would be subject for arbitration for any repairs that would be in excess of six hundred dollars, single item. So, for instance, you go out there, you check out the vehicle, you go to drive it, and you find that the transmission feels funny, the transmissions not shifting right. You certainly will be eligible for an arbitration claim at that point if the vehicle was represented as a green light vehicle. Now, if it’s an as-is unit, I recommend you bring your mechanic. They could put standing tools on them. They can check th out and listen to ’em, they can sure that everything appears to be in line. If it is being represented as-is / red light. Yeah. And those terms are specific to auto auctions. Everything that we sell in a commercial sale, as is would be considered red light in your business, it’s as-is / where-is, so the buyers certainly beware and sometimes think I mean, the cars won’t even start, so we come into situations where stuff’s been sitting for an awfully long time. Absolutely. So I’m the high bidder. My hand was up I was the last guy standing, and I just paid twenty thousand dollars for a car. I want to go get bank financing. OK, so what we do is we don’t… we do not finance anybody in-house, but we do welcome our dealers to go, and if they’re, a member of a local credit union, or they’re a member of a bank. If they can get pre-selected and pre-authorized to spend up to a certain amount. Once they finish the transaction with us, they can take our bill of sale, go to their credit union, their bank, have them make out a check to us directly for the amount that they have been… that they purchased the vehicle for, plus the fees and what have you, and they can bring it here certified and we can commence the deal that way. So as Joe Public, I have to make sure that I have the ability to pay the money no matter what if I come to the auction sale, there’s no financing contingencies or any of that stuff. I got to put my money on the table. And how do I know that I get a free, clear title when I buy it at the auction. So the auto auction is guaranteed by and insured by a company called Auction Insurance. So we guarantee that we will provide payment to the seller and that will provide a title guarantee and a title that would be free and clear of any liens or encumbrances to the purchaser of the vehicle. So everything is insured. It will happen if it doesn’t happen… You’re taking care of. You get your money back. Absolutely. Joe Public at the auction sale. Go in, check them out. Check out your local sale. And as Wyatt points out, it’s probably a good idea to go in and just observe a couple of times if you’ve never been to an auction sale. There’s a lot of things going on and they’re fast and they’re fun. Wyatt, can’t thank you enough for your time today. Absolutely. David, anytime. Thank you.