Interest in these auctions has boomed as the economy stays stagnated and credit rules have tightened. Buyers who formerly could qualify for auto loans on new or solid used cars now find they need to shop with cash. But the United States is a country built around the automobile, and it's a lot easier to get a job if you have a car to drive to the interview, so for many people car auctions are a way to fill the need.
The best bargains are usually on the older less-than-perfect vehicles that dealers don’t want to spend time and money on. Dealers go for the relatively late-model higher-priced vehicles. Since dealers want to make a profit by buying low and selling high, you might be able to pick up a good car by bidding slightly higher than a dealer is willing to pay. Or bid on older vehicles that dealers don’t want.