Don’t Get Scammed When Buying A Used Car!
Lets face it, many people who are selling their cars are sometimes doing it because the car is in some way not so good. Maybe the owner had a recent accident and the car is just not running right, or the frame is bent and it doesn’t drive straight any longer.
Or maybe it’s not even theirs. They just threw up an ad on Craig’s List and made up some fake documents to give you hoping you won’t check anything before handing them the cash. And of course they disappear after that.
Or maybe they were thinking that a low mileage car is a lot more valuable than a high mileage one, so they have their buddy at the local shop run back the miles registered on the gauge so that the car looks like it has few miles on it than it really does. All you need is a drill that runs both ways and a jack, very easy to do.
It DOES happen, a lot more often then you’d think. And how would you ever know until it’s too late?
That’s why, at least in the UK, there are companies offering HPI checks to help hire purchase investigation easily.
What’s an HPI Check?
It’s for someone who is buying a used car not to get scammed. You can think of it as a sort of insurance policy for your purchase. It’s the same as brining the car to a mechanic and paying them to look for any potential problems. But instead, your paying a company to look for problems that aren’t mechanical or can’t be seen with a visual inspection.
See, every time a car is registered, or there is an update to the title, all of that information goes into a private database.
These companies pay in order to use that data and offer it to you for a small markup. It’s really a great system and the costs to the consumer, you, are small considering the amount of money you could loose buying a damaged or stolen car and loosing your entire investment.
What Do I Get?
When you use a company, they are easily searchable with a simple search on the internet, they’ll give you a bunch of information that will tell you the actual documented mileage of a car, if the car has been in an accident or written off by an insurance company and then rebuilt, and even if there is an outstanding loan or debt against the car.
If there is debt or a “lien” on the car and you purchase it, even without knowing it exists, you are now legally liable to pay off that debt. So be careful!
An HPI check is a small “insurance” policy that is something I always recommend anyone buying a used car invests in. And it is just that, an investment or insurance policy. It’s just like taking the car to a mechanic to be sure there are no major problems.
Both are necessary for piece of mind and a fat wallet.