At Russell Smith Auto, we choose only the best vehicles to sell to our customers.
In our case, the general manager is our buyer; he goes to a local auction and looks for vehicles that the customers in our market like, which is normally trucks. Trucks are big here in Texas and Fort Worth. So we're always looking for trucks. We sell a lot of SUVs as well.
We look for low mileage vehicles in good condition. Our buyer checks them out before they run through the auction, then bids on them and comes back with them.
The auctions that we go to don’t sell salvaged vehicles, so we don’t worry about getting any because the titles have all been checked out. If for some reason one got through and we bought it, we’d take it back. But we’ve never had that happen.
We’re always refreshing our inventory – we go to auction once or twice a week. How many we get depends on how many we bought the week before. The week before tax season we usually buy more because that’s a busy time with people using their tax return money to purchase vehicles.
Once the vehicles are on our lot, we put them through our shop and fix any safety issues. We've got to get them looked at and checked out early before we put them on the lot to sell. And every vehicle is backed by our warranty which covers the engine, transmission, starter, alternator, and water pump for six months or 6,000 miles (whichever comes first).
We keep about 30 vehicles in our inventory on average, but sometimes it’s 40 and sometimes we have 25. We try to keep as many as we can, to be honest, we have room to have 60 or 70 if we had them. So it's just a matter of buying them and getting them through the shop and getting them on the lot. There's always a fresh rotation of vehicles. We tell our customers if they come and there's not something they like, we always get new inventory in and to check back in a few days.