Warning: GSA reserves the right to change these sale terms and conditions. Most official government auctions are regularly announced in national newspapers (such as USA Today) or local newspapers as part of the legal requirements for conducting the auction. While purchasing a car at a government auto auction can be an excellent way to take advantage a great deal on a used car, buyers will want to prepare themselves in advance to ensure the best possible GSA auto auction experience. I’ve already learned that what the GSA says isn’t necessarily what will happen.
If you live in a metropolitan area large enough to maintain and liquidate their own fleets of police, fire, and administrative vehicles, municipal auctions are another way to go. One example is New York’s Department of Citywide Services, which is sort of like the GSA of NYC.
Many government auctions and sales, both federal and state, are listed on the web site, run by the U.S. government. Most of the auctions are ones that you have to show up in person to bid, although there are a few internet auctions set up. Then, in August of 2009, a friend of ours who owns a small used car lot, informed us of a GSA auction in Omaha, Nebraska with several 15-passenger vans available. You have to be aware that most auctions will charge you an additional % fee based on the final price of the car.
Oh, the GSA Reps repeatedly state that GSA will only accept bids at FMV This makes no sense to me b/c I don’t know anyone who will meet GSA’s auction conditions ($5,000 EMD , QD, no title insurance, slow process with no guarantees or protections) AND pay FMV.
You can apply for a pre-approved used-car loan at your bank or credit union, or at an online auto loan company such as Auto Credit Express , and be prepared in case you win a bid. When cars seized through the DEA – IRS – FBI – other government agencies and the police through events like seizures and foreclosures the GSA holds auctions to the general public to unload the vehicles. Manheim and other wholesale auto auctions require you to hold a valid CA dealers license in order to register and buy their cars. The best chance of finding new vehicles at auctions is through the treasury department and the US marshal service. Just go to the GSA Fleet Vehicle Sales site and look at the scrolling information.