We’ve designed our online car auctions to be as clear and intuitive as possible here at RAW2K, so it’s never been easier to start bidding on our range of used, salvage and seized auction cars. With that said, to be successful at online car auctions there are a few certain skills you need to have. In some cases, they can even give you an edge over your competition!

damaged car

1. A careful eye

One of the greatest aspects of online car auctions is a single vehicle can be useful to different people in a range of different ways. Some might be looking for a vehicle of a specific type to fix up and sell on, or alternatively it might hold a few specific parts that someone else might be on the lookout for. Similarly, you’ll have your own personal set of criteria when looking to buy a car at auction, so make sure you know what you’re looking for.

For example, if you want to drive the vehicle yourself at some point, you’ll need to have the car’s log book. And even if you’re looking for a fixer-upper, you’ll still need to know what all the various ABI categories mean. Once you’ve narrowed down which options are relevant to you, you’ll be able to scan the information for each auction car faster than ever before, saving yourself a lot of time in the process.

By the same token, you’ll need to decide what level of damage is acceptable to you. We include a brief damage report with each entry, but these usually only constitute a quick overview, rather than anything too detailed. As with most physical auction houses, our auction cars here at RAW2K are sold as seen. That means if you decide it’s too damaged after you’ve already made your purchase, that responsibility lies with you!

You can also find details for arranging viewings on each entry. It’s up to you to assess the level of damage before you buy the car, so make sure you’re satisfied before you pay the money!


2. Patience

Of course, there’s nothing to say that you’ll immediately find the auction car you’re looking for. If you find that’s the case, don’t worry too much. Sometimes that happens. The key is not to give up immediately, or assume you’ll never find it. We refresh our online car auctions on a daily and weekly basis, it’s a great idea to check back regularly – it may well turn up!

Similarly, when you’re bidding in an online auction, don’t give up hope just because it looks like there might be some fierce competition. Don’t forget that other bidders might also be bidding in several auctions, or looking elsewhere for the same vehicle. If they find what they’re looking for somewhere else, one or even several could drop out and leave you as the highest bidder. Try to avoid the temptation to drop out early, and keep your nerve until the auction actually finishes. If you’re lucky, you might be in for a pleasant surprise.

On the other hand, if you lose an auction, don’t despair too much. As we’ve just mentioned, we refresh our auctions of used, seized and salvaged vehicles on a reliably regular basis. There’s always the next one!

3. Budgeting (or knowing when to bow out)

Never spend more than you can afford – that’s the mantra of seasoned auction bidders, both online and in physical auction houses. As you may already know if you’ve read our guide on how to buy a car at auction, the most prestigious car auction houses have stringent checks that buyers have to pass before they’re allowed to bid on cars, to ensure that the payments all process smoothly. Obviously, it’s all done slightly differently in online car auctions, so it’s up to you to know how much money you can afford to spend. Each sale is final, so if you exceed your budget, the consequences are on your head!

Now, you may be thinking ‘that’s a very simple mistake – no way I’d do something like that.’ But you may be surprised at how often it happens! When you’re really keen on a car it can be easy to get caught up in the heat of things. We get it – all the most experienced auction buyers have had their own close calls. It can be especially tempting if you can almost afford it, but not quite. But honestly, have your budget and stick to it. If your auction car moves out of your price range, the rate at which we refresh our listings means that another one might be just around the corner.

handing over keys

4. Organisation

Although we don’t hold dealer-only auctions here at RAW2K (which means anyone can bid), it’s still important to be prepared for what happens when you win your chosen auction car. Most frequently, you’ll need to check what the delivery arrangements are. Sometimes sellers will offer to deliver the vehicle, but for most cases the buyer (that’s you) will be expected to arrange. Occasionally, the seller may expect additional paperwork or arrangements to be made. Before you start bidding you need to make sure you know what’s expected of you as a buyer – and be flexible and organised enough to produce it all in short order!

Some buyers might choose to up their chances by bidding on several vehicles simultaneously. It’s a perfectly viable tactic, but it’s worth remembering that it can go very pear-shaped very quickly unless you’re on the ball! Keep a close eye on every one of your bids, and once you win you’ll need to withdraw from the others as quickly as you possibly can. Otherwise, you risk being faced with the prospect of paying for two vehicles – or at least, one very unhappy seller.

Optionally, a bit of mechanical know-how never goes amiss. It can give you a useful basis of understanding if you find yourself enquiring after the auction car in more detail, and it can help you to more quickly understand the exact condition of the car. Generally though, it’s not quite as vital as the other qualities on this list, so don’t worry too much if it’s not your forte. As for the others, you can always practice them as you go along as you search our site for a huge range of used, seized and salvage auction cars. Why not take a quick look to see what we’ve got in stock?