What Is a Branded Title?

You discovered the excellent car, priced perfectly underneath what you envisioned. Ahead of sealing the offer, you look up the car’s information and facts and to your shock find that the motor vehicle has a branded title. What does that indicate, and is this a deal killer?

A branded title signifies that the car or truck had comprehensive harm, difficulties with its odometers, or a defect that caused it to be acquired again by the producer. A car or truck with a branded title can be a great deal, but you have to have to be knowledgeable of  drawbacks that might make the deal not well worth it. 

Important Takeaways

  • A branded title says the motor vehicle was when declared a complete decline or comes with some other key dilemma.
  • Vehicles with branded titles have been fixed or rebuilt and sold.
  • A branded title can signify the auto was weakened in a flood, its odometer was rolled back, or it was concerned in a big accident.
  • Motor vehicles with branded titles may well cost 20% to 40% fewer than the Kelley Blue Book worth of the very same cars and trucks with a clean up title.
  • Securing financing and coverage for automobiles with branded titles may be hard.

Kinds of Branded Titles

A branded title lasts for the car’s life time. Even if the vehicle is repaired to perfection, the branded title difference can not be eliminated. 

Branded titles are managed in a different way state by state. Generally, they fall into a handful of classes: 

Altered odometer

A car’s mileage impacts its worth, so states desire odometer readings are noted when a car is registered. Odometer readings are generally recorded when cars are introduced to a mechanic. 

However, odometer readings aren’t generally accurate. Far more than 450,000 cars for each year are bought with fake odometer readings, in accordance to the Countrywide Highway Site visitors Basic safety Administration.

If the odometer has been observed to mirror less miles than the car or truck basically drove, the title will have an “altered odometer” or “odometer rollback” title. 

Rebuilt title brand

If a car in an accident is declared a full reduction, the coverage corporation will commonly sell the car or truck at auction to attempt and recoup some of its expenses. The automobile could be purchased by a mend shop that may possibly check out to repair and sell  the motor vehicle.  

Right after these repairs, the motor vehicle has to move a protection inspection in advance of it’s deemed usable. If it passes, the condition will difficulty the vehicle a branded title with a rebuilt or reconstructed label. The title notifies potential entrepreneurs that the car was broken and rebuilt. The label warns potential proprietors that the structural or mechanical integrity of the car may possibly have been affected. 

Salvage branded 

A automobile with a salvage branded title was in a collision and declared a whole reduction. To qualify as a whole decline, insurers estimate the charge of the repairs as well as the scrap benefit of the automobile. The automobile will be declared a full reduction if the required repairs and scrap value range from a sure share of the car’s price, based on what state you are living in. If the insurance coverage company decides the car is a overall decline, it’s issued a salvage branded title. 

Water damage brand

Water can damage a car’s interior, produce mould and mildew progress, and harm the engine. In some states, vehicles that ended up harmed by h2o or concerned in a flood will get  a water damage branded title. 

Professionals and Drawbacks of Branded Titles

A automobile with a branded title might glimpse new and operate terrific, and shopping for one may well be tempting. But in advance of handing about your difficult-acquired funds, contemplate these execs and negatives: 


  • Branded title cars and trucks are much less expensive: If you’re on a funds and wanting for trustworthy, low-cost wheels, a car with a branded title could possibly be the reply. Branded title vehicles may expense half the cost of a comparable auto with a clean up title.   
  • A newer auto may well be within just your finances: By getting a branded title automobile, you can stretch your budget. You can get a motor vehicle with much more characteristics than you’d in any other case be capable to afford to pay for. 


  • Reselling your branded title car may perhaps existing challenges: Potential buyers may be suspicious of a branded title car or truck, and the title may well also slash the resale benefit.  
  • Funding might be hard: Numerous creditors will only finance autos with clean titles. If your selected automobile has a branded title, you may perhaps have to shop all around for a car mortgage, and may possibly pay out increased fascination. 
  • You might wrestle to discover an insurance company: Not all insurance plan corporations will insure autos with branded titles, so you may have to shop all-around for protection.
  • Mechanical difficulties might be lurking: You’re taking a gamble with a auto with a branded title. A car that has had important destruction or other issues may perhaps not be trustworthy, and you could possibly end up paying out for pricey repairs. 

How to Come across Out If a Auto Has a Branded Title

You can use the following applications to locate out if a vehicle has a branded title: 

  • CARFAX: Even though CarFax studies aren’t cheap—a solitary CARFAX report is $39.99—they can be helpful in the motor vehicle-getting process. Not only will CARFAX display if a vehicle has a branded title, but it will also display you when the title was issued, as nicely as routine maintenance data and how several entrepreneurs the vehicle had.
  • VINCheck: A no cost service made available by the Countrywide Insurance coverage Crime Bureau, VINCheck permits you to see if a vehicle has been stolen or noted as a salvage automobile by participating insurance policy organizations. 

For men and women who are experienced about cars and trucks and are on the lookout for a cut price, a vehicle with a branded title can be an superb invest in. Nevertheless, getting a motor vehicle with a branded title isn’t with no hazard. Right before purchasing a vehicle with a branded title, have an independent mechanic examine the vehicle and glimpse up its repair service records to see what get the job done was done.