All new cars have clean titles, but it gets a salvage title if a vehicle is damaged and declared a total loss. Many salvage title cars end up in junkyards, but some get a rebuilt title. What does rebuilt title mean here? This article answers this question.
What does Rebuilt Title Mean
A rebuilt title is a salvaged car, which they repaired and restored, and it's safe to drive on the streets. There are some pros and also cons to buying a rebuilt title vehicle.
When the cost of repairing a damaged car approaches the car's value in Kelley Blue Book, car insurance companies declare it a total loss, meaning they don't pay any more to fix it. Sometimes the car is technically repairable, but the insurance firm decides not to pay for fixing it because it costs too much.
Some other times the vehicle has such damage that they can't repair it base on factory standards.
In some cases, a salvage title car may not be worthy of being on the road or even impossible to designate depending on the intended country or state. However, once they return it to a drivable condition and the car passes a state inspection, it receives a rebuilt title.
It's essential to know whether you're dealing with a salvage title vehicle because there might be flood damage or some hidden problems which affect its safety or reliability on the streets.
Sometimes the given damage is so severe that the vehicle does not operate safely or correctly again. Unfortunately, some unscrupulous car dealers try to sell a car in this condition without disclosing the necessary information.
If you want to finance a rebuilt car, you should know most banks don't grant loans for vehicles that lack clean titles.
What are the Advantages of Purchasing a Rebuilt Title?
Cars with rebuilt titles usually come with documented repair work. A legitimate seller should give you the same paperwork used to obtain the new title.
At this point, a mechanic can use the given documentation as a guide in inspecting the car and verify that they performed the specified work.
If you have a correctly documented list of repairs, in some cases, even if the vehicle was salvaged, you may get more information than you would have when buying another car.
Now you know what does rebuilt title mean you should also know that car with rebuilt title may often be bought for less money than it would have sold otherwise, even with the charge of repairs.
But salvage title cars still sell for far less money than their clean title equivalents. That's an interest for potential buyers but less appealing when you sell the vehicle.
Also, remember that many car dealerships do not accept cars with rebuilt titles as trade-ins.
Buying a salvage or rebuilt car can be a time-consuming process. Still, it's worth examining all possible details, from the car's odometer reading to its title situation, to secure that you get the right car.
A used vehicle with a rebuilt title may work great for you, but regardless of what you pick, at least you make a fully informed choice.
All You Should Know About Rebuilt Titles
This part covers all questions you may have about rebuilt title vehicles, their insurance, and other details. Let's get to them:
1. What kind of damage did the vehicle sustain?
You can get the answer from the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) or similar agencies in the same area the car is registered. You should also order a car history report from multiple companies, such as Autocheck and Carfax. This report requires the car's VIN (Vehicle Identification Number).
2. Was there frame damage, and has it been perfectly realigned?
A defectively aligned frame causes undue wear and pressure to everything from the brakes to the wheels. It can also fail to preserve the occupants appropriately in the event of a hard crash or rollover.
3. How severe was the damage, and where were the repairs performed?
It is essential to know that necessary repairs to a rebuilt vehicle were performed accurately and by a good repair shop.
Ensure the parts used are either from the company or are quality reproductions and that they have been installed correctly.
Unauthorized repair shops can use cheap parts or put parts into the car until they get the new title, then switch them back out for the damaged ones.
Even worse, they might weld large parts of another car onto yours, making it unsafe in crashes.
4. How can I tell if a car has been rebuilt appropriately?
Because there is no sure-fire way to know how well repairs have been done, always have any car with a rebuilt title entirely examined by a certified reliable mechanic.
Even if the car is not unsafe to operate, skipping this step may occur expensive breakdowns that cost you more to repair than the total original price of the vehicle.
If you're interested in buying a vehicle with such a title, it's also crucial to get as much paperwork covering the vehicle's repairs as possible. Look for specific receipts for the labor and the parts to know that both were up to standards.
5. Should I avoid buying a car with a rebuilt title?
If a vehicle has been previously damaged severely enough to warrant a salvage title, it might seem not quite wise to take a chance on it.
Severe damage can hazard a car's fundamental integrity. Even if repairs were perfect enough to earn it a rebuilt title, it might not function the way it intended or even fully comply with regulatory standards.
However, it's not unusual for a salvage title car to never have had damage. If it's been repaired by a reliable shop using factory spare parts, it can be as safe as an initial vehicle with a clean title.
If resale value is essential to you, a rebuilt car is not the right used vehicle for you. Because salvage cars with rebuilt titles sell far less than cars with clean titles, you can often get a great deal on a car, which is correctly rebuilt.
But remember, it may be challenging to sell such a car in the future and worth far less than a similar vehicle with a clean title. So unless you want to keep it for at least a long time, you may not want a rebuilt title car.
According to JD Power and Associates firm, rebuilt vehicles are worth 40% less than clean titles. Remember that the actual or exact market value may be less or more depending on the market and the sort of damage the car sustained that led to it needing a rebuilt title in the first place.
6. Is the salvage vehicle insurable?
Insurers have difficulty placing a value on a car with a rebuilt title. Accordingly, they might be hesitant to offer full coverage on a vehicle whose integrity they believe might be compromised, so owners of rebuilt cars may only be able to obtain liability coverage.
Some car insurance companies may even decline to cover a vehicle that has a rebuilt or reconstructed title at all.
Assume you're able to get collision or comprehensive coverage or liability insurance on a car with a rebuilt title. In that case, it might come with a higher price and lower level of advantages than you'd get if you insured a car with a regular title.
If you're considering buying a rebuilt vehicle with a salvage title, contact an insurance company with the vehicle's precise details to see if they would insure it and for how much.
Getting an insurance quote and guaranteeing that you can get insurance coverage is integral to determining whether buying a damaged car is a wise move.
What does rebuilt title mean in the used cars market? A rebuilt title is, in fact, a salvage car, which is repaired and restored to drive on the road. There are both advantages and drawbacks to purchasing a rebuilt title vehicle.
This article answers all questions you have regarding rebuilt title vehicles. Reread it, and if there are any more questions, ask us in the comments section.