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So you want to check the legitimacy of a used car that you have found but are not sure whether or not the seller is being completely honest or is maybe hiding something from you.
Unfortunately even if there was a company that provides zero cost checks it would not be in business for long because it cost the checking company every time a check is made. To be able to provide this car data check service needs to retrieve data from many different sources and this all costs money. If you are really serious about a car you can get a really comprehensive background check on a vehicle for less than ten pounds.
Without doing the proper checks and for the sake of a small outlay you could end up with a vehicle that is not what you thought.
So you have to think as to whether or not a small investment is worth saving you the cost and hassle of ending up with a dud vehicle.
Many car purchasers each year end up falling foul of unscrupulous sellers, purchasing cars that are far from what they believed they were buying.
Below we have listed our top ten crucial things that we feel you will need to consider or undertake before purchasing a car.
The only exception to this would be when buying from a bona fide Motor Trader (Garage, Dealership, Auction House) or motor trade organisation.
Before you part with any funds for any car, always ask to see the card copy of the seller's driving licence. Always check car sales websites and trade publications to ensure that your potential purchase is valued correctly, compared to similar cars. Watch out for distance selling scams, where a legitimate car is advertised, but the seller does not own it nor have it in their possession. Do not accept their insistence that the car is UK registered, even though it is presently with them in a foreign country. Never transfer money to a 3rd party holding account on the promise that the car will be shipped to your location. Finally, probably the best advice we can offer is 'If it doesn't feel right to you BEFORE you buy it, don't buy it.' A car provenance check will probably provide you with THE FACTS of a car's history but it is your money on the line, and nobody can really advise you on how to spend it.

If you are unsure about anything, wait until you have found answers to your worries or concerns before you part with any money.
Before you buy a used vehicle we strongly recommended you perform a vehicle history check first. You are thinking maybe you can get a free car registration check rather than having to pay for one.
So whilst you will not get a check for nothing you can get a low car check that may not be quite as comprehensive but may provide the information that you require. Some services do provide a basic report but will not provide enough information to allow you to find out if the used car that you are looking at has any previous history that may indicate something is wrong. As many as 1 in 12 vehicles in the UK are believed to have some sort of discrepancy with them. It could be that the odometer has been tampered with and the car has done many more miles than you thought. In these times of the 'credit crunch', with many feeling the pinch financially, sellers may not always tell the full story or might not disclose histories that a car may have had at point of sale. Put it this way, 'Would you buy a house and not carry out a survey?' If your answer to this is 'No' then a car check works on a similar principle. Remember that the Registered Keeper may not be the owner, if so, ask for other proof that they have had legitimate possession of the vehicle - a bill of sale, service history, MOT certificates etc. This effectively turns ANY verbal agreement that may have been struck into a written contract and provides evidence in the event of someone selling the car fraudulently on to you. The photo and the address on this should enable you to match the seller to the details on the Log Book and the address you are looking to purchase from. If the car seems unreasonably cheap for what it is then this can be a tell-tale sign that things are not what they seem.
Always remember that you have far more power and influence in any car purchase up to the point of when you pay for it.
This could be something minor or it could be something as serious as the car being an insurance write off, has outstanding finance, is stolen or has been cut and shut.

It could be more serious, if you buy a stolen vehicle it will have to be returned to its rightful registered owner. Additionally with a comprehensive report on the vehicle you can use it when you sell on the car to prove its legitimacy. Unfortunately we still see consumers buying cars in 'good faith' assuming that everything is fine with the car. How can you ever prove you have bought from a previous Registered Keeper if you cannot verify the details?
Furthermore, if the seller has insisted on a cash sale, are you going to feel safe doing the transaction where 3rd parties could see you handing over a large amount of cash? It will also reassure you that the funds are being given to the Registered Keeper, not a 3rd party posing as them. You might miss out on a potentially good deal but if you have doubts and unanswered questions prior to purchase, spending money will not give you peace of mind or answer questions. After that, it is going to be very difficult to change or rectify any outstanding concerns you may have. You will not get any compensation or even get your money back and you could lose thousands. After you are happy (or not) that the car performs as you want it to, then go over the car with a fine toothcomb. It is always going to be extremely difficult, if not impossible, to get your money back once you have already handed it over.

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