What are the risks of buying a used car?
A bad car could cost you thousands, or put your life at risk.
Buying a used car can be a risky business. Each year thousands of people buy second hand motor vehicles that have had their mileage reduced, are hiding serious accident damage, are incorrectly described, are stolen or on finance. In many cases the buyer can end up thousands of pounds out of pocket or putting their lives in danger.
Used Car Buyers are at risk of purchasing a vehicle they will never legally own and therefore in danger of losing the car and the money they paid for it. This can occur if the vehicle is:
- Subject to outstanding finance - 24 out of 100 vehicles checked by HPI are subject to outstanding finance. This represents the biggest risk to the car buying public and if the loan remains unpaid when you purchase the vehicle, you will never actually own it.
- Stolen - Buying a stolen vehicle will result in you losing both the car and the money you paid for it. HPI Checks identify nearly 30 stolen vehicles a day.
- Cloned - A clone is a stolen car which is given the identity of a legitimate vehicle to help disguise the fact it is stolen. This is the vehicle equivalent of identity fraud. To make sure you don't buy a cloned vehicle follow our buying advice.
Unscrupulous fraudsters have little regard for you or your safety, particularly after you have parted with your cash. Vehicles could have mechanical problems as a result of being:
- Clocked - 6 out of every 100 vehicles checked by HPI have a mileage discrepancy. Buying a clocked vehicle will cost you more than it is really worth, and serious mechanical failures could occur if the correct servicing schedule has not been maintained.
- Written-off - Every year, nearly half a million cars involved in accidents are declared by insurers to have been too badly damaged to be repaired safely or economically - but some still find their way back on the road presenting a real danger to anyone that drives them. On average, 4 out of every 100 vehicles we check has, at some stage, been written-off.