Advantage Smart Impound Lot Tackles Costly Problem
Impound storage fees cost consumers, automotive retailers and finance companies more than $1.1 billion annually — a whopping $3 million each day, according to study released yesterday.
This doesn’t come as news to us because in discussions with auto lenders close to 2 years ago, they demanded a solution to this costly problem. They wanted to know immediately when their collateral was impounded, not wait a week or 10 days before being notified. So, when we officially announced our new Advantage GPS platform this year, it included our Smart Impound Lot feature.
Smart Impound Lot is powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI) and immediately notifies the finance company or dealer when the vehicle enters a known impound lot. Because new lots come online from time to time, our solution updates the system on an ongoing basis. We also track whether a vehicle has been parked an inordinate time at an unusual location. Having a vehicle left abandoned can be even more costly due to vandalism and theft.
The numbers are staggering, and the savings to our dealers and finance companies over the past year have been impressive. Average recovery costs vary by region in the U.S. but range from just over $300 to about $440. Given that the average daily impound fees ranges from $30 to more than $40 a day depending on the region of the country, a week’s stay can cost about $300, not including added flat fees, transportation costs, getting a new set of keys, and miscellaneous costs. Costs for a week’s stay, can quickly approach $750. Keep in mind that 20 percent of the 76,000 vehicles impounded each day in America are held in impound storage for 15-30 days. Those costs can far exceed $1,500.
Smart Impound Lot is part of our interactive, AI-driven dashboard that enables auto lenders to view real-time analytics upon log in. The dashboard helps them monitor the health of loan portfolios, including costly impounds, so that they can mitigate risks quicker.
In the case of Advantage Smart Impound Lot not only is knowledge power, it means significant savings.