How to check outstanding finance on a car

How to check outstanding finance on a car

If you’re buying a used car, there are a few things you may have already considered. What make or model do you want? 3 or 5 doors? How many miles should the car have on it and does it have an up-to-date MOT?

It’s a good idea to have a deeper thought as to whether the vehicle should have a full service history, or if it has been stolen but have you thought about it all? Have you thought about how to check if there is any outstanding finance on a car?

A finance option is a great way to get a car if you commute a lot, it means you can rack up the mileage and then return the vehicle to the dealership after a few years, or you pay a balloon payment and keep it. Why should you be on the lookout for these cars? Because if you’re sold a finance vehicle that hasn’t been paid off completely – you can’t legally own it.

Legally a car does not belong to the owner until they pay that final payment in their finance agreement. Until the finance company is paid in full, there is an outstanding loan connected to the vehicle. 

Unfortunately, there are a few people who will try and sell a vehicle instead of returning it to the dealer for quick cash flow. The car may have been borrowed in their name, but without this final payment, it could be considered stolen.

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If you purchase a car with outstanding finance against it, not only can you not return the vehicle, you might not be able to recuperate your costs. Meaning if you spend thousands of pounds on a car, you may not get that back when the vehicle is repossessed.

As you can see, things can get messy quickly when it comes to buying a used car which is why it’s important to do checks. Fortunately, doing these sorts of assessments is as easy as entering a reg number and paying a one-time fee of £5.99.

Car Guide is a great tool when buying a vehicle with our quality car history checks. The small fee we’ve already mentioned allows you to check out a vehicle online and gather a wide variety of important information about a car.

For just £9.99 you can get a comprehensive history report of a car and includes the outstanding finance check.

What outstanding finance checks can I get with Car Guide?

Checking for outstanding finance is one thing, but there are many more essential checks when it comes to buying a used car. By purchasing a buyer’s report from Car Guide, you can find out the following.

  • Valuations. When buying a used car, you’ll often wonder whether you’re getting enough for your money. Are you being overcharged? Thankfully, with these checks, you’ll get a valuation of the car, which might not be 100% accurate due to the fact that dents and scratches aren’t accounted for, but you can certainly tell if you’re paying ridiculous prices for the vehicle.

  • Stolen or scrapped. Some cars get into such big accidents, that they’re not fit for repair, meaning they have to be scrapped. If a vehicle has this scrapped ticket put against it, it cannot be sold for use on the roads. The same goes for stolen cars; they also have a ticket set against them. These checks will let you know if the vehicle has had any, in which case you should reconsider purchasing the vehicle.

  • MOT history. It is a legal requirement to have an MOT on a car and while failing an MOT is not a reason to avoid purchasing a vehicle it can give you a significant insight into what condition the car is in. Continual advisories on the same issue might show signs of neglect which is something to consider when purchasing.

  • The number of owners. This may not seem like such a big deal at first, but the number of owners a car has can show signs of issues. If a car has had an abnormal amount of owners, it might mean that the vehicle has had a lot of problems. Remember, not all issues will show up on an MOT, repairs can be fixed and sorted before the annual legal check. It all depends on age, but any more than five owners for a car less than ten years old is considered above average.

That’s not it. Vehicle history checks with Car Guide will also highlight other aspects of the vehicle including any plate and colour changes, technical data, upcoming repairs and service including costs, plus, it will highlight if you should be asking for any documentation in relation to import/export files.

When handing over your hard-earned cash, you can’t be too careful. That’s why we offer a free car check but you’ll need to purchase a £5.99 option to gain outstanding finance information (but this is a small but practical price to pay for peace of mind). Be sure you don’t have buyers regret and get the best deal for your money by buying like a pro.

Frequently Asked Questions

It is easy, simply enter the registration number here. The finance check will include information such as the name of the finance company and the agreement number.
Checking if a car has outstanding finance is easy, however, it is not free. Be careful of any company claiming free finance check. Check a car with Car Guide today. Just enter the registration number here.
Our finance check will give you information such as the name of the finance company and the term agreement number which will allow you to contact them and find out more details. Simply enter the car registration number here.

Outstanding finance means that the current owner still has to pay the rest of the money to the finance company (which currently owns it). Buying a car with outstanding finance is not a situation you want to be in as technically the owner isn’t legally allowed to sell it and the finance company has rights to demand either the car or that the debt is settled.

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