Great deals on a wide range of items can be found every week across the country at a Gov liquidation sale, a police or County sheriff sale or a variety of other types of Gov auctions. These sales are nothing new, but what is new is that this medium called “The Internet” is making it easier for everyday people to get in on the savings. The necessary information detailing What is being liquidated and where/when it is happening can now be accessed much more easily by anyone with an internet connection. Not very long ago this wasn’t the case. Only the relatively few people who knew where to look and took the time and effort to track this info down – could capitalize on it. Today there are even instances Gov liquidation and Gov auctions being conducted online, without the need to physically attend.
Take used cars and trucks for example. It’s not hard to find excellent high quality used vehicles at prices you would not believe. Whether your attending a county Sheriff sale, police auction, or other types of Gov auctions, they all provide the potential for picking up cheap used cars and pickups at pennies on the dollar. County Sheriff sales and Police auctions sometimes acquire vehicles in the course of their law enforcement duties. Many times individuals prosecuted for various criminal offences have possessions seized which may have been obtained by or used in the criminal acts. These seized items may be cars and trucks, SUVs, all-terrain-vehicles, boats, motorcycles, or thousands of other items. These can be auctioned off with no minimum bid, and that means if you are lucky enough to be the only bidder or even one of a few, you may get the deal of a lifetime. But you have to know when the Sale is, where it is and know what the inventory is so that you can go in prepared to know what things are worth. This information is free to the public – if you know where to look. But if you don’t know where to find them it can be time consuming and frustrating.
County Sheriff sales are generally posted at the County courthouse and most also have requirements for notices to be published in local newspapers. But requirements are not all the same. Then there are Gov auctions, police auctions and various government surplus sales which all can have notices posted in different places. Unless you know exactly what you are looking for it can be a challenge to gather all of this info.
Within the pages of this site we will post some info regarding where you can find specific County Sheriff sale and Gov liquidation, Gov surplus and other gov auctions information. Also for a small fee, you can have all of this information collated for you in one place to access any time you want. Currently this one of the best such sources for Gov auctions of all types. It can save you hours of searching and as well as driving time if you intend to visit your County Courthouse and Sheriffs dept offices. Car dealers have been attending gov auctions for years, as they know when and where they are held. And now in large part because of the internet, everyday consumers are able to be privy to this information as well.
A couple of points to remember when attending a County Sheriff Sale or auto auction:
- In advance of attending an auction, make sure you read the terms & Conditions of the Sale so that you understand how to handle any situation which may occur. There are similarities to most auctions, but there can be significant differences also, so be sure you are informed ahead of time. Things such as accepted forms of payment, taxes and/or extra fees due on won items, are won items required to be taken away immediately or can you return the following day? Knowing these kinds of basic terms before hand can save you major frustration and disappointment.
- Obtain the inventory of the auction well in advance. Sometimes the notice in the newspaper or posted at the courthouse will actually include the inventory – other times it will be in the form of a separate flyer or catalogue. You will need this in order to research the value of vehicles or other items which you may want to bid on. A few good used car websites for researching vehicles and current values are:The National Association of Car Dealerships – although mostly Dealership vehicles, there are a lot of good research resources at your disposal for free.Kelley Blue Book– most people have heard of “Blue Book” values.Cars.com– lot of reviews and research.Autobytel.com– more research possibilities here.By going in with the knowledge of the true market value of items you want to bid on, you will be prepared to bid with confidence and to also STOP bidding, if the bid amount reaches a point where it’s no longer beneficial to you.
- If you can inspect the items before the actual auction date, do it!! If this is not possible, arrive at the auction as early as possible in order to give yourself sufficient time to do as thorough an inspection as is possible under the circumstances. Most auctions are on a “buyer beware” basis and there are no returns if the item doesn’t meet your expectations. This is part of the reason many people do not attend Government auctions or County Sheriff Sales. They are used to the warranties and guarantees they get when buying retail. But sometimes the actual warranty you get – say from a used car lot – may not give you much more protection that no warranty at all. And this is also why you can find such incredible deals at a government auto auction. They are liquidation inventory the fastest easiest way they can and they are not in the business of dealing with faulty merchandise. So the trade off is you buy “as is” and that some vehicles will go for extremely cheap prices.
- Be sure to plan for the eventuality of if you are the winning bidder. Say for vehicles or large items like appliances or motorcycles or boats or snowmobiles – do you have transportation arranged to remove the items? Is insurance an issue? I won’t drive a car ½ mile without insurance. Every once in awhile someone attends a County Sheriff sale or another kinds of auctions and hasn’t even thought about what they will do after they have ended up high bidder on a car or pick up truck. Depending on the Sale, this can be a huge problem so don’t let it happen to you.
- Go into Gov auctions or a County Sheriff Sale or any type of auction for that matter with a definite amount in mind at which you will no longer bid any higher. STICK to this amount and don’t get carried away and get into a bidding war. Bid with your head (backed up with the knowledge you have gained from researching any items you bid on) and not with your emotion. A good auctioneer will try to get this type of bidding war going and by creating a strong auction momentum, they can encourage bidders to bid more than they had originally planned. Don’t fall into this common trap. Use your head and stick to the figure you come into the Auction with. There will always be another deal around the corner. Gov auctions such as Gov liquidation sales, Government surplus sales, County Sheriff Sales and police auctions of seized and repossessed items, provide many many opportunities to come away with bargain merchandise and vehicles.
- Finally – attend a few auctions ahead of time as an observer. You won’t feel any pressure or nervousness and you will be able to see how things work in a more relaxed state of mind. This experience can be very useful when you actually start bidding on items. You will be less likely to make many of the errors new bidders make and more likely to come away with some bargains you didn’t think were possible in this day and age.
As far as foreclosures are concerned, a County Sheriff Sale can be a great place to look for these as well. But be aware, many of the safeguards are not in place that you would normally experience while buying a property in the more traditional manner of using a Real Estate agent. Be sure you are very knowledgeable about what you are doing or consult a lawyer before you go down this route. Sometimes existing tax liens or other charges against the property will be passed on to a buyer. Sometimes it may not be possible to have a proper survey or home inspection done and because a home can be the biggest purchase you will ever make, the potential for loss can also be the largest. Not trying to scare you away from a County Sheriff foreclosure sale or a bank repossession sale, as these can in fact be great sources of cheap property. But I repeat, the potential for loss is there as well. So as with anything new, go in prepared. Talk to professionals and learn all you can before you actually decide to jump in.