Top Tips for Buying a Car at an Auction in the Philippines

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What tips can help bidders land a good deal at a car auction in the Philippines?

  1. Do some research
  2. Inspect your items of interest
  3. Pay attention to other bidders
  4. Listen attentively to the auctioneer
  5. Don’t get swept by the action


Filipinos have started to embrace public auctions now more than ever. It is slowly becoming their preferred means of buying secondhand items. Thousands of auctions are held yearly on these islands with one of the most common being a car auction in the Philippines.

More and more people are opting to buy secondhand cars because of the sad state of our economy and our frugality and thriftiness. Besides, we love getting things with a discount, so car auctions are perfect. Although they don’t provide the ideal, relaxed environment for buying a car, they allow us to avoid outrageous dealer markups and ambitious owners who sell their cars for insanely steep prices.

Moreover, participating in car auctions don’t guarantee great deals. It is still possible to cause financial damage to yourself especially if you have no idea of what you’re doing. However, if you’re careful and smart, you can score a seriously good deal. Below are some tips that will help you land said deals when you’re at a car auction:

Do Some Research

It is imperative that you do your research before you attend a car auction. Unlike at a dealership, no one will be showing you around and feeding you with details and specifications. You have to seek out the information yourself.

Know the features of the cars you find interesting. Uncover its history. Trace ownership, if you can. You can get some of these directly from the auctioneer but if you want to get to the nitty-gritty, you have to do the digging yourself. Knowing everything there is about the vehicle will save you from financial loss and regrets.


Inspect Your Items of Interest

Some public auctions hold preview days where bidders can take a look around and physically inspect the items up for auction. Others only open this window for a couple hours prior to the start of the auction. Whatever the case is, if you are given this opportunity, take it.

Allot at least a day or two or arrive several hours early to inspect the items you want. If you have no knowledge of or about car parts, bring someone along who does. It can be a trusted mechanic or a friend that knows his/her way around cars. An expert eye can see past the cover-ups, so make sure you have one with you.

Pay Attention to Other Bidders

The lots aren’t the only things you should pay close attention to. It is also worth it to invest time in observing your competitors or fellow bidders. There are two types of bidders you want to keep a close eye on – the expert bidders who make a living out of these auctions and the troublemakers who are there to make everybody’s lives miserable.

Expert bidders know what they’re doing. They have been to countless auctions and can tell trash from treasure, so when what you want comes up, observe their reactions. Their expressions and attitude toward a particular car should be enough to tell you whether or not it’s worth bidding on.

As for the troublemakers, you can easily spot them among the crowd. They’re the people with no manners and are obviously just pushing up the price. You should watch out for the cars they were “inspecting” because there’s a chance they tampered with the product.

Listen Attentively to The Auctioneer

Certain information that you weren’t able to get during your research may be given to you by the auctioneer. Before actually declaring the car up for auction, auctioneers often list vehicle details like service history, mileage, road tax, etc. All of which are crucial and will help you determine the current quality of the product.

If you are preoccupied, there’s a great chance you’ll miss important details. Even if you think you have done your research well, it is still advisable that you listen to the auctioneer’s description. You might hear something that would confirm or refute your appraisal.


Don’t Get Swept by The Action

Auctions are fun and exciting, so it’s easy to get caught up in the action. If you don’t have your wits about, you may very well find yourself in the middle of a useless bidding war where you aren’t just fighting for the car but for your pride as well. These things are useless and are a sure way to lose money.

Most people get trapped in a bidding war because they pin all their hopes on a single vehicle and can’t walk away. Don’t be like that. Keep your options scarce and always be ready to let go of a product. Going home empty-handed is so much better than leaving with a busted car and no money.

Key Takeaway

Car auctions in the Philippines are the ideal place to buy cars at a low price. It is perfect for people who don’t have enough resources but need their own mode of transportation. Although it isn’t always guaranteed that you’ll get a great deal, following these tips will certainly increase your chances.

It’s quite simple. You just have to do your research, inspect the cars, observe other bidders, listen to the auctioneer, and prevent yourself from getting swept by all the intense action. If you stick by these tips, you’ll leave the auction happy – with or without a car.