What makes a car salvage is where it has been involved in an accident and is damaged beyond repair as declared by an insurance company. Upon declaration, the insurance company pays the maximum market value to the insured and the vehicle is disposed by auctioning it off to the highest bidder. A vehicle that has been declared salvage is issued with a special title, something that reduces its value to something nowhere close to the one with a clean title.
The government laws require that a seller of a salvage vehicle should disclose that information. However, some unscrupulous individuals don’t and therefore find below some of the scams that you need to be aware of.
Car rebuilders buy over 90% of the salvaged cars; then they rebuilt and put them on sale as ordinary cars. Sure, buying a salvage title vehicle can be unbelievably cheap and save you good money; you have to be aware of the title washing scam. A car scrap dealer and brokers are the major traders in this business. The car is registered as many times as possible using some dubious means, which involve corrupting some government officials. Therefore, with several registrations, there is a possibility that the title will end up without the salvage title annotation and thus they can sell as a normal used car, which collects a premium. To avoid this scam, you must carry out a title search online. Again, you can visit relevant sites that generate car history; this could save you thousands of dollars.
Lost title and quick sale scam
Here, an individual owner of a salvage car will approach an unsuspecting desperate buyer with a story that they need to dispose the vehicle as quickly as possible and with a deep discount. They will tell you that the reason for such a low price is because they lost the original title. The seller convincingly tells you that they don’t have money to apply for a new title or simply, they are short of time and they need the money immediately -sounds a sweet deal isn’t it. As if that is not enough, they could go ahead and give you some form of written authorization so that you can apply for the title yourself. Later, when applying for the title, you’d realize it is a salvage title and that you paid way too much than the value of the car.
Buying a car involves spending thousands of dollars and therefore, you must approach it carefully. Don’t trust the seller’s word without verifying. Again, there are registered car scrap dealers who are guided by the laws of the country, as much as possible, dispose your salvage car through such genuine people.