Are you looking for a used car? Every year in the United States, millions of cars change hands in used car deals. They occur in private sales, on used car lots, and at dealerships nationwide. When you’re searching for the right vehicle for your needs, you’re probably looking for a good deal as well. Often, the best-priced car listings are for vehicles with a branded title. Is that a bad thing? What does a branded title mean, and should you avoid it?
What a Branded Title MeansIf a car has a branded title, it means that its title has been permanently identified as a vehicle that has been deemed a total loss. The car has been involved in a theft, collision, flood, or fire, or has been sold as a scrap car in its past. That doesn’t sound too good, does it? The truth is that cars with branded or salvage titles might still be a good car. In many cases, they can be repaired and inspected for roadworthiness, and put back into service.
The Problem with Branded Title CarsBut just because a car is fixed and put back on the road doesn’t mean it’s a good idea to buy it. There are a few reasons why:
- There is no longer any warranty coverage. When a car has been deemed a total loss, the warranty is voided by the manufacturer as its value has been paid out to the owner at the time.
- There’s no way to know how well the repairs were done. The repairer may have done a fantastic job or they may have skimped and done as little as possible. It can be incredibly hard to detect.
- You can’t be sure of its dependability. When a car has a branded title, it has already experienced major issues in its past. Just because it’s been fixed up doesn’t mean those problems won’t come up again.
- They don’t have the same value. You might buy the car at a great price compared to one with a clean title, but it doesn’t have the same value. When you try to resell it down the road, you’ll lose money on it.