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Frequently Asked Questions

Please note the information below is general and subject to change between auctions.

Finalized Terms & Conditions will be issued upon registration for each auction. 

Are your auctions open to the public?
Our nationwide auctions are open to the general public. When notated in the auction listing assets deemed DISMANTLER; SCRAP/ PARTS ONLY; NO RE-TITLE; NOT TO BE EXPORTED OUT OF COUNTRY may only be purchased by a licensed Dismantler/ Salvage/ Scrap Dealer that has provided a valid scrap dealer license. These particular assets are not open for bidding by the general public.
What are the starting bids?
For LIVE auctions, the starting bids are determined by the crowd. For ONLINE auctions, the bids start at $100.00.
Reserves: All vehicles and surplus do have reserves determined by the seizing agency and will not be disclosed to the general public. If a bid does not meet the reserve, the high bidder will be notified and the vehicle will be offered exclusively to him or her at that price (if the agency provides the reserve). Bidder does have the right to approve or deny the offer made by the agency. If the reserve is not met the vehicle will be offered at a later date in an effort to achieve the reserve amount.
Registration: To bid you must register at every auction. There is no deposit required to enter or place a bid. Registration is conducted throughout the auction.
  • For LIVE auctions: to register you will need a photo I.D. The registered bidder is only allowed two companions (no one under the age of 15 is allowed in the auction area). Registration prior to the day of the preview is not offered, but will be available the day of the preview as well as the day of the auction. If you only intend on spectating during a live auction, and do not wish to bid you still need to register.
  • For ONLINE auctions: Under "Login/ New Bidder" create an account by clicking "New Bidder". The user name and password that is created will be used for all future online auctions. The information you provide when setting up your online account will be the information assigned on your title work. If you choose to title your purchases in a business name, the business name and address needs to be utilized. At any point should you decide to title your purchases in your person name, your account information will need to be updated to reflect the desired change. This also applies to a change of address or business. This is the responsibility of the bidder. Upon initial registration, you will need to input a credit card number (not retained) but will only be used to verify your identity. There will be no additional registration fees.
  • For LIVE auctions you must be present to place a bid. All title work and government documents need to be signed by the new owner immediately following payment. We do not provide live proxy bidders. We do not accept phone bids. Our live auctions are conducted separate from our online auctions, unless the auction notates Webcast.
  • For ONLINE auctions: Once registered, select the lot you wish to place a bid on. You may click the "Bid (amount here)" button for a one time bid, or enter your "Maximum Auto Bid" by selecting the lot and physically typing in the highest you are willing to bid for that item. 
Payment for Online Auctions: All items must be paid in full within 48 hours (2 business days) from the bid approval email. NO EXTENSIONS FOR FINAL PAYMENT WILL BE MADE FOR ANY REASON. Acceptable forms of payment (U.S. Funds only) are by method of:
  • Electronic Bank Transfer: Bank wire instructions will be included in the approval email. Bank wire transfers must originate from an account of the registered buyer or the business the buyer represents. The transfer must include the buyer name and reference the lot(s) purchased. Any electronic bank transfers received from an account other than that of the registered bidder will not be accepted and will be returned to the originating bank. Bank wires must be received within the time frame specified for final payment and may take up to 24 hours to process. Title work will be processed the following business day of bank wire posting to account.

  • Cashier's Check: with overnight delivery made payable to Apple Towing Co. 8511 S. Sam Houston Pkwy E., 2nd Floor, Houston, TX 77075 and originate from an account of the registered buyer or the business the buyer represents. Please include the buyer’s name and reference the lot #(s) purchased.


Unacceptable payment methods for Online Auctions: No personal or business checks, bank letters, credit/debit cards, or letters of credit will be accepted. In addition, onsite payment will not be accepted. Bidders should not attempt to finance any purchase through a bank or credit union, nor will the auction company negotiate with any lender. Bidders must have the funds available before placing any and all bids. Payment must be made by the successful registered bidder. Payment received by parties other than the successful registered bidder will be declined.

Payment for Live Auctions: All items must be paid in full within 1 hour from the close of the auction. You may leave to acquire the funds, but must return within the deadline to pay. NO EXTENSIONS FOR FINAL PAYMENT WILL BE MADE FOR ANY REASON. Acceptable forms of payment (U.S. Funds only) are by method of:

  • Cash

  • Cashier's Check: made payable to Apple Towing Co. and originate from an account of the registered buyer or the business the buyer represents.

  • Personal or business check with current original bank letter of guarantee. If paying by check, the check must be accompanied by a current original bank LETTER OF GUARANTEE on bank letterhead and approved by Joshua Scully of Apple Auctioneering Co No later than 5pm preview day. Bank letters in a format other than the following format will not be accepted. Bank letter must read: _________ is a customer of the bank, This bank will guarantee unqualified payment to Apple Towing Co. on account # ________ up to the amount of $________. No ‘Stop Payment’ will be issued regarding this transaction. This letter expires on_______. (Must be at least 10 days after the auction date). 

Taxes: We do collect sales tax on surplus sold. No tax will be collected by the auction company on any lot located outside of Arizona. Notice on Arizona lots only: Auction company must collect (Guadalupe 10.3%, Nogales 8.6%, Tucson 8.7%, Yuma 8.41%) sales tax from Arizona residents depending on asset location unless a Arizona Resale Certificate (Arizona Form 5000A) is provided during checkout. Out of state buyers must provide a copy of their ID and complete an ADOR Form 5011 (which will be provided) in lieu of tax. 
Buyers Premium: We do not collect buyer's premiums on any federal government auction. We do collect a 5% buyer's premium on any auction conducted on behalf of a county. 
Removal of Vehicles/Surplus:
  • For LIVE auctions: all vehicles/surplus must be removed from the auction area after payment and title work is processed. If arrangements are made with a car carrier service to pick up the items at a later date, those arrangements need to be discussed with an Apple Towing representative. Vehicles that are left after the day of the auction and no arrangements have been made for them to stay will be booked into storage and charged commercial storage rates.
  • For ONLINE auctions: The removal deadline is determined by the seizing agency and may vary. Please see the Terms & Conditions of the posted sale for the removal deadline. 
Does Apple provide transportation of vehicles from the auction site?
Our towing company is based out of Houston, TX and would be more than happy to provide a free shipping quote for items bought in Texas. However, we do not have trucks located at our various auction facilities across the nation that service the general public. In these distant markets, our trucks strictly service government tows. We recommend obtaining a free shipping quote with Sherpa Auto Transport, Bargain Auto Transport, Montway Auto Transport, United Road, eShip, Ship a Car Direct, Executive Auto Shippers, AmeriFreight.,, (for heavy equipment),, (boats), or (exports). 
What does “As-Is, Where Is” mean?
“As-Is, Where Is” means all assets are being sold with all faults, without warranty or guarantee either expressed or implied, as to the age year of manufacture, make, model, odometer, condition or any other specification. No guarantee as to the accuracy of the description is made. The descriptions of the vehicles and surplus are furnished as a guide only. It is the responsibility of the Buyer to have thoroughly inspected the merchandise and to have satisfied him or her as to its condition and value and to bid based upon that judgment solely. Buyer will pay all cost for any and all repairs.  ALL PURCHASES ARE FINAL.
What does a “Soft Close” mean?
This feature is utilized for all online auctions. A "soft close" means if any bid is placed within the last three minutes at the close of the auction, the bid will automatically extend the closing time an additional three minutes (example: if a bid is placed at 2 minutes until close, it will extend until 5 minutes). This feature protects bidders from being outbid without the opportunity to be notified and place another bid before the close of the auction. Please be aware that when placing your "Maximum bid", the website will bid on your behalf up to your set maximum bid by the preset bid increment of $25. Example: The current bid is $1000 and the bidder enters a maximum bid of $500. The system will bid at the preset increment of $25 until the bidders "Maximum bid" is exceeded. At that point the bidder will be notified via email that he/she has been outbid (if that option is selected during registration).
What does it mean when a vehicle has a Branded Title?
When a vehicle is involved in an accident, stolen or weather-damaged and it is determined that the repairs will cost more than the vehicle is worth, the insurance company will total the vehicle and take possession. Insurers then sell these vehicles at auction to salvage yards or salvage rebuilders. To warn future buyers that an insurance company has declared the vehicle a total loss, the vehicle will be issued a salvage title. Rebuilders then repair the vehicle, have it pass a detailed inspection, then a Rebuilt Salvage title is issued. Other title brands include Not Actual Mileage (when there is an odometer discrepancy, or a rollback recorded), Mileage Exceeds Mechanical Limits (typically on older vehicles where the analog odometer does not have enough digits to accurately record the mileage and it "rolls" back starting over at zero), Buyback/ Lemon (when the manufacturer has bought this particular vehicle back due to a defect), Flood Damage, and Hail Damage.
What does “Total Loss Reported” mean?
This means the vehicle was declared a total loss by an insurance company. Normally when this happens a Salvage title is issued. However, that is not always the case. We try to keep an eye out for these clean title vehicles that have been declared a total loss to warn our buyer base. This declaration will effect the value negatively.
How is a tie bid in an online auction possible, and who is the winner?
In the event of a tie bid, precedence is given to the earliest bid. Hypothetical Example: Bidder #1 places a $10,000 max bid on a vehicle that currently has a high bid of $5000. The high bid is now at $5,025. Bidder #2 places a max bid at $7000. Bidder #2 is immediately outbid by the $10,000 max bid and the high bid immediately adjusts to $7,025. Bidder #2 decides to place a $10,000 max bid this time. He does not surpass the initial $10,000 max bid by Bidder #1 therefore he is not the high bidder. In the case of a tie bid, precedence is given to the earliest bid.
Can I buy a vehicle before the auction?
We do not sell any items in advance of the auction. All vehicles are forfeited via court order, and as a requirement that demands the vehicles be sold at a public auction.
With all of the fraud going on these days, how do I know you’re a legitimate company?
Apple Towing Co is one of the largest government contractors for managing and selling seized vehicles in the United States. Apple Towing manages over 75 seized asset storage facilities servicing the U.S. Customs & Border Protection, U.S. Department of the Treasury, and U.S. Marshals Service. We encourage you to visit the U.S. Marshals Service website at From their home page: Under the “Resources” column, click “Managing and Selling Assets.” On the right hand side you will see “Current Asset Sales.” All Apple Towing & Apple Auctioneering Co auctions are advertised on this page. Under the “National Sellers List” you will find Apple among the list of companies contracted by the United States Marshals Service. To confirm U.S. Customs & Border Protection auctions visit: To confirm U.S. Treasury auctions visit: We also suggest viewing our Press & News Coverage page.
Questions not answered here may be asked by email or by phone 713-600-7778.
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