Buy Wrecked Motorcycles From Insurance Companies

Insurance-owned motorcycles can be purchased at salvage auctions.

When insurance companies declare motorcycles total losses, they eventually end up for sale, typically at a salvage yard. Motorcycles are declared total losses when they sustain enough damage that the repair cost exceeds its market value. All motorcycles sold at a salvage auction will carry a salvage title as a record of the prior total loss claim, and must be repaired and inspected before being driven again, according to state laws. If you are looking for an inexpensive motorcycle, whether to repair or harvest parts, you can often find one at a salvage auction.


1. Locate a salvage yard near you. Vendors are typically found in the phone book or by using an Internet search.

2. Contact the salvage yard to ensure it handles insurance vehicles and carries motorcycles in its inventory.

3. Register as a buyer with the salvage yard. Every yard has its own registration process. Typically you must provide your name and contact information. Some will charge a registration fee.

4. Browse the yard’s online inventory and contact the seller or broker directly to negotiate a purchase. If the yard offers live auctions only, go to the yard at the correct day and time to participate in the auction process. The yard or broker representing the motorcycle should provide information about the vehicle’s damages.

5. Settle the negotiation or have the highest bid at auction.

6. Provide payment to the salvage yard or the broker in accordance with the salvage yard’s payment policies.