Local 6 uncovers website with unheard of deals

GovDeals.com sells off government surplus at low prices

ORLANDO, Fla. - We all complain about government waste -- but now, government trash can be your treasure. Local 6 is taking you to a place where you can get everything from luxury cars to laptop computers at unheard of discounts.

It's called GovDeals.com, which is sort of like the government's version of eBay.

One of the sellers on the site is the University of Central Florida, which has a warehouse on campus, stacked to the ceiling with items that are being auctioned off.

"Depending on the condition, we've sold desks as low as $10," says Chris Rausch, the Associate Director of Resource Management at UCF.

In short, Rausch runs that warehouse, which is actually a surplus center on campus where used and unwanted supplies are sorted, then put up for auction on GovDeals.com.

UCF is just one of 5,400 government sellers on the site. On any given day, there are thousands of items up for grabs.

"We sell anything from broken furniture to three million dollar helicopters," says Bob DeBardelaben, the President of GovDeals.com. "Anything that a government has to sell, we sell for them."

DeBardelaben says the site has become one-stop shopping for families looking for bargains during tough economic times.

"If you've got a dad, mom that's looking for a car for a kid that's about to go to college and they need a vehicle, you can find safe vehicles on our site," he said.

For example, we found a 2007 Ford Expedition in good condition that just sold for about $7,000. Or a 1998 Chevy Blazer, well-maintained, that was just snatched up for less than $3,000.

The cars often come from police departments and other agencies that are replacing their fleets. In other cases, they're confiscated from criminals.

"Sometimes you can get a nice Porsche, Mercedes Benz, Escalade. These are drug dealer cars," says DeBardelaben.

If driving the ride of a drug dealer doesn't appeal to you -- what about a cheap ticket to the information superhighway? We're talking about great deals on computers and other office equipment.

For example, an average laptop in working condition.

"We generally sell them for between $80 and $120," says Chris Rausch from UCF.

But, there's a catch -- they don't come with an operating system. You have to install one yourself.

The computers that have been used by students, faculty, and staff at UCF are wiped clean, according to Department of Defense standards, before they're put up to bid.

UCF aims to raise about $300,000 a year from the items it puts on GovDeals.com. That money is then used to fund future programs.

Also, when you're on the site, don't be surprised if you find liquor or weapons. Those also come from police raids -- but, you have to have a liquor license, or be a licensed gun dealer to bid.

And no -- you can't just go to that warehouse on UCF's campus to shop. You can go there to check out an item, but you have to bid online.

The goods will be shipped to you, sometimes at an additional cost -- so it's good to check.

To visit GovDeals, click here.

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