Checking a used car's history

Advice on checking a car before you buy

Check a used car before you buy

The AA is supporting a new campaign launched today (Monday 4 November) by Trading Standards

If you're looking for a used car, it can pay to get its history checked before you part with any money.

Why? There could be outstanding finance, so if you buy the car you also become liable for the debt. It could have been involved in an accident or an insurance write-off. Worse still, it could have been stolen. Either way you could lose your money and your new car.

Most reputable car dealers will have had this checked before you buy, but you will have to pay a premium for it. With more options to buy used cars privately (such as car-auction sites and classifieds) a car-history check could save you thousands of pounds and a lot of worry.

Be sure before you buy a used car

Check a car

Peace of mind

"A check takes just a few seconds. It scans a comprehensive range of information to check the car's credentials. This includes finance and insurance databases, VOSA and the DVLA, giving you peace of mind," says Jeremy Tiffany, head of AA Car Data Checks and Vehicle Inspections.

A check takes just a few you peace of mind

Jeremy Tiffany, AA Car Data Check

"If you're looking at a few cars you can buy a multi-check, which allows you to check up to five cars at a time.

You also get extras, such as performance and fuel economy, as well as car tax band to help you to budget.

"Equally, if you're looking to sell a car, you can use a car history check to make your car stand out above the rest."

We are keen to support the Citizen's Advice Bureau (CAB) and the Trading Standards Institute in their campaign to protect consumers when they are buying used cars.

(18 November 2013)