Car Auction
Guides 2 Mar 2023

Top Tips When Buying A Car At An Auction

At Oracle Finance, we are specialists at finding funding for Auction Car Finance so, we thought we’d share our top tips when buying a car at an auction.

Buying anything at an auction is an exhilarating experience, with rare and sought after cars offering a once in a lifetime opportunity to own the car of your dreams. With this in mind it is easy to get caught up in the moment of seeing these fantastic cars, from roaring supercars to our much-loved classics, looking their gleaming and shiny best on viewing days. So, if you’re not just attending for the love of the cars, the good food and evening live music entertainment, and you are actually considering bidding at an exciting car auction event, such as these, then we have a few tips for you to get the most out of your next auction purchase.

Try Not To Get Carried Away

When you are presented with the pre-released brochure or are browsing through the many website listings, it is very easy to get carried away focusing on the car you want instead of the car you can actually afford to bid on. Not only that, but you might also need to know exactly how much you can stretch to, should you find yourself in a bit of a bidding war for your next dream car.

One of the benefits of speaking to a member of our award-winning team here at Oracle Car Finance, is that we put together the perfect finance package to help you to get approved at the top end of your budget, and provide you with an agreement in principle on any UK auction vehicle. This means you are in a fantastic position to freely bid in confidence should your dream car sell at a higher price than expected. This agreement in principle tends to be valid between 30 and 90 days.

If you’re looking to buy a classic car at your next auction, you may find that putting down a higher deposit could open the option to an interest only finance proposal. Your dedicated Account Manager will be more than happy to explain all the tailored options available for you to get the most out of your bidding experience.


What If I Am Looking To Add To A Collection?

It is little to no surprise that the high-value car market has vastly increased in value in recent years and so if you’re looking to add to your proud car collection, you may find that releasing equity in your existing collection could open the doors to your next set of wheels. As well as enabling you to free up cash for a future purchase, it could also mean that rather than paying off the depreciation on a modern vehicle, you could buy a car that holds its value and own a better car with less depreciation.

Do Your Research Before The Sale

Before any auction, whether you are attending in person, bidding online or over a phone, you should study the catalogue thoroughly and perhaps choose a couple of options in case you miss out on your first choice. When buying any used car, it is imperative that you do your research. Many established auction sites will have a comprehensive photo library of the cars inside and out and will be more than happy to ask any further questions you may have prior to the event. There will also be a wealth of useful information in various car magazines to help you study the necessities on the make and model of your chosen car before you actively step into the bidding room.

For those that are closer to home, you may also be able to go and see the auction lot prior to the sale day in order to check any details or condition of parts you couldn’t see online. Car valuations can be found through comparing like for like cars online on sites such as Auto Trader or Car & Classic, so you can judge whether the price you are willing to pay is a fair price for that model and year of car. For required regulations like the car’s MOT history, if it is within the ages that it is required, this can be checked online for free.

If you need a hand with your research, our team would be more than happy to assist in your buying journey and will be able to offer advice to do with valuations, residual values and future sale prices completely free of charge.


Car Auctioneer
Image courtesy of Iconic Auctioneers

What If The Car Didn’t Meet The Reserve

It can happen and as frustrating as it is for the seller, you may be able to approach them privately if you still really wanted to buy the car. Of course, this is seller dependant, but you may find that they are open to the opportunity of an offer following the auction and they may negotiate a deal with you on the vehicle.

Speak To Your Oracle Car Finance Account Manager

Buying at an auction need not be a stressful experience, our expert team have over 18 years’ experience in sourcing tailored car finance products, including for car auctions. Whatever type of car you’re bidding for, if you’re looking for financial security before you raise your hand then you can get in touch with us either by calling us on 0800 012 6666 or clicking here.

With over 2,000 Trustpilot reviews and four-time consecutive award winners of the Best Specialist Car Finance Provider award from 2020 through to 2023, you too can find out why thousands of people trust us time and time again to find a smarter, tailored funding solution when looking for your next dream car. Speak to your dedicated Account Manager today about your pre-approved credit line options, with access to specialist lenders for bespoke solutions including auction sales for classics, supercars and racing cars.