Not a week goes by when I don’t receive emails about second hand cars with outstanding credit, being repossessed by finance companies from their unsuspecting new owners – usually at some unholy hour of the day or night! Many of these problems could have been avoided if an HPI check on the vehicle had been carried out before purchase.
An HPI check is a vehicle history check, informing you if a used car you are interested in buying is currently recorded as stolen, has unpaid debt on it or has been ’written-off’ by an insurance company. It will also tell you the market value of the model of vehicle being checked if available, a useful tool when negotiating a price!
In a recent trial, vehicle checkers used a Golf GT TDi with a plate change, a category C write-off and a mileage inconsistency. HPI identified all three faults and provided detailed information on all discrepancies.
Any unsuspecting consumer, buying the Golf without a check, would have been putting their safety at risk. Plate changes are often used by criminals to hide a dodgy past and/or a category C write-off, while a mileage discrepancy puts the safety and condition of the vehicle in serious doubt.
An HPI check costs around £40, but could save you a lot more money and heartache in the long run if it prevents you buying a lemon. A check should be the first choice for used car buyers keen to keep the criminals at bay and buy with confidence. Add in the HPI Guarantee which allows members of the public to claim compensation if the information provided by HPI is incorrect or incomplete and you find yourself in a win/win situation.