If you love riding motorcycles, but want to keep your costs down, an excellent way to buy a motorcycle at a great price is to purchase your next bike at an auction. Many of the bikes sold at auction are salvage bikes, which will be cheaper than non-salvage used bikes sold by dealers or individuals. Contrary to popular belief, a salvage bike is not necessarily totally destroyed. Some salvage bikes may have only cosmetic damage, and others may be easily repaired. Some, recovered from theft, may already be in great shape. Salvage bikes that are not repairable are an economical source for spare parts.
You can find frequent motorcycle auctions going on throughout Utah. These are some of the best —
Utah DMV Impounded Vehicle Auctions
In Utah, police officers can seize motorcycles and other vehicles for a variety of reasons, including DUI arrests, vehicles that are unregistered or have expired registration, and drug-related arrests. Owners of impounded vehicles get 30 days to follow the necessary procedures to reclaim them. The DMV then auctions off any vehicles that were not claimed during that time period.
Motorcycle auctions are held throughout the state in the impound yards where the seized vehicles have been held. To participate in an auction, check the DMV's list of upcoming impound sales. The sales price includes payments for the state and for the impound yard. For the state portion, you can write a check. Each impound yard has its own procedures for what kinds of payment it will accept.
Insurance Auto Auctions, Inc. (IAA) Auctions
IAA has been conducting salvage vehicle auctions since 1982. You can bid in an IAA auction either in person or online. Their Utah auctions are held in Ogden every Thursday at 9:00 a.m. Onsite previews are held before each week's auction on Wednesdays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 pm, and on Thursday mornings from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. The auction site address is 1800 South 1100 West in Ogden, and their phone number is (801) 399-2818.
You can also look at the vehicles for sale on their website. In their numbering system, motorcycles will have auction numbers between 1,000 and 1,999. The website will tell whether each motorcycle is salvage or clear, whether it was recovered from a collision or in other circumstances, and whether it runs, as well as other information that can help you decide in advance whether to bid.
To bid on IAA motorcycles either in person or online, you must complete a buyer registration form and pay a $200 annual registration fee.
Salvage Bikes Auction
Unlike many other vehicle auction companies, Salvage Bikes Auction specializes exclusively in bikes. To buy a salvage bike through this company, you place bids on their website. To bid, you will need to pay a monthly registration fee.
Before the auction, you can inspect the bikes in person in North Salt Lake at Copart Inc., 170 West Center Street. Their phone number is (801) 294-3000. Before going out to the site, register for free at the Copart website to get a Copart buyer number. Bring the number to the West Center Street facility any time from Monday to Friday 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
You can also look on the Salvage Bikes Auction site to see the bikes that are currently for sale as well as a preview of the bikes that will be sold in future auctions. The site provides multiple photographs and detailed information about each bike. Some bikes have a “buy now” option that will let you bypass the auction process.
If you have never bid in a motorcycle auction before, you may be amazed at the number of bikes for sale and at how low the prices are. Just beware that bidding in motorcycle auctions may become addictive!