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How to check the history of a used car

How to check the history of a used car

Buying a car is a big decision and not one that should be made lightly so you may be wondering how to check the history of a used car.

As one of the more expensive items we own, cars are an investment at the end of the day, which is why doing your homework is essential. If you’re looking for a new car, you’ve probably already had your eye on something, but buying a used car means looks aren’t the only thing you need to consider.

Asking yourself how many miles you’ll be doing in the car can narrow down your search as the car you’re looking at might have too many to handle your use. Other questions you might ask yourself include: 

  • Who will be driving the car?
  • How big is the space in the boot?
  • How much would the insurance be?
  • Can I afford the repairs if anything breaks?
  • How much is the road tax each year?

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It’s important to consider all of these aspects before beginning your search; that way, you can narrow it down. After, you can get into the nitty-gritty, such as how to check that the car is in good condition.

One way to do this is to check the history of the vehicle. Some sellers may have a record of the car’s history which is incredibly handy, although some may not, which might put you off the vehicle. However, don’t walk away so soon because you can check it online for free.

Check a car history for free

Checking a car’s history can highlight any issues before purchase, but there’s a lot more to it than that.

You can get free car checks at Car Guide. The free check will provide you with:

  • Vehicle history check
  • Full MOT history check
  • Number plate change check
  • Detailed technical data
  • MOT component failure prediction
  • Imported/exported status

Although the check is free, it does provide one incredibly valuable piece of information—the car’s MOT history with an MOT check.

Check a car MOT history

An MOT history is a great tool to have when purchasing a used car. Sometimes a car might look pretty and shiny on the outside, but taking a look into its past can reveal all sorts of information. You may find reasons not to buy the car, or you might discover that it has been well looked after and maintained. 

Remember an MOT failure does not necessarily mean the car is terrible, it just means it reached a point in its use where change was needed. This might mean changing tyres, batteries or belts, but the main thing to track is what changes have been done from one to the next. If you spot the same advisories on multiple MOTs (that aren’t wear and tear), then it might be a sign of neglect. 

A quick MOT check can also find anything like mileage discrepancy and other things car buyers would consider important. It’s essential to check a car’s MOT history online, and Car Guide is a great tool to do it, however for a small price of £5.99 you can check even more.

Check a car service schedules

An MOT is a legal requirement, but caring and looking after a car involves regular servicing. Although it is not required by law, it is something you should look for when purchasing a used car. 

Combining the service schedules of what should have been done on the car with the MOT history gives you a comprehensive look at the car, not to mention a lot of reassurance. 

Fortunately, you can also check out the service schedules and cost of cars at CarGuide for that small price of £5.99. It’s a small price to pay for a relaxed mind, knowing that you are aware of any issues previously existing with the car and yet, there is more. Car Guide will also highlight any upcoming repairs that will be due and the cost, which can either help you negotiate with the seller or will help you budget better.

Need to know when is your car service due? No problem!

Check a used car

Finding out the ins and outs of a car is one thing, but knowing its current status is also essential. A basic check and history report from Car Guide can get you information such as whether the vehicle has any outstanding finance against it. 

If it does, it means that the person selling the car to you does not own the vehicle, therefore you cannot legally buy it from them. You can also discover if the car is stolen or not, something incredibly important. Similar to an outstanding finance agreement, if a vehicle is stolen, it is not the sellers to sell, meaning you cannot legally buy it. 

Purchasing a stolen car will not only see you returning the car to the rightful owner with no financial compensation, but it also means you could be liable in court. 

There’s one last check you can get from Car Guide which is a great help when buying a used car and that is a valuation check. People often price cars as what they feel they are worth, which in some cases can be a little more flattering than they should be. By getting an accurate valuation, you can discover a car’s worth and negotiate with the seller.

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