The primary benefits of buying a salvage car include saving money on an auto purchase and getting a good deal on a quality automobile, provided the car does not contain excessive damage. Salvage cars appear on the market after an insurance company declares the cars a total loss. These losses occur from several sources, including accidents, floods and theft damage; variations in structural and aesthetic damage range widely in salvage cars, making some worth purchasing and others not.
In addition to the extent of damage, variations exist among states and insurance companies in the legal and financial requirements for determining whether or not a car is totaled. Some states have low thresholds for declaring a car a total loss, meaning that auto shoppers may pick up salvaged cars with minimal damage, and fix them for relatively low costs. Salvage cars exist in all makes and models, making it possible for people to find specific types of salvage cars identical to makes and models on the sale floor, but at much lower prices. With minimal repairs, people can afford their dream cars without breaking the bank.
Despite bringing financial benefits, some salvage cars prove poor investments. Sometimes salvage cars suffer structural damage, necessitating costly repairs and making them fail safety inspections. Although initially saving money, the cost of repairing damaged cars may add up quickly, surpassing the cost of buying a damage-free car. Additionally, some insurance companies do not cover salvage cars, making getting sufficient auto coverage difficult.