Guide for Salvage Automotive Re-builders

Customers are attracted to low prices and high quality but will sometimes turn down salvaged vehicles simply because of their undeserved bad reputation. What dealers can do to avoid this pitfall boils down to three best practices: using high-quality materials, paying attention to detailing, and buying strategically.

A well-repaired vehicle always sells faster and brings the best price at market. Spending money on good repairs won’t lead to profit loss–skimping on cheap ones will. Cheap repairs drop the vehicle’s value and make it much more difficult to sell. No repair is too small. If a customer sees one poorly-crafter repair, they’ll always wonder about the repairs they can’t see. Consignors who own their own collision shops should ensure quality work by paying employees fair wages and using proper materials. Consignors who outsource their repairs should always investigate a shop before they commit.

While detailing can seem like a small issue, it’s often the first thing a potential customer sees. If a vehicle is otherwise spotless but has dirty glass, the whole vehicle can look dirty and beaten down. Always use a professional for a quality buff and make sure that the engine bay, glass, and entire body are thoroughly detailed using quality products. This is another area where spending money on quality leads to higher prices and quicker sales.

Finally, buying strategically can help keep prices appealing and margins high. Vehicles with minor front-end, rear, or side damage and theft recoveries are the easiest to repair and sell, while flood damaged vehicles are tough to sell and bring the lowest prices. Vehicles loaded with options tend to sell quickly and at a high value, though they don’t do especially well at auction.

Some customers might have hard feelings about salvage vehicles, but by following these best practice solutions, you can call your vehicles “good as new,” and mean it.

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