Car crime is on the up, rising by 30% over the last over the last three years and there are numerous reasons why. Increased demand for stolen cars from abroad and increasingly sophisticated or ruthless measures taken by thieves being among the most salient.
Some of the cars that are stolen, however, are sold on domestically to unsuspecting buyers looking for a good deal. With this in mind, here are three things to be aware of before buying a used car.
How the Cars Are Stolen
When cars began to be fitted with immobilisers and other technology to improve security, the industry felt sure it had virtually solved the problem of car theft. As we all know, however, criminals will always find a way and now use scanners to open our cars or find a way to get their hands on our keys – so how can we avoid buying a car that has been stolen?
- Check the Cars History
One sure fire way to find out whether or not a car has been stolen is to check its history. Companies like HPI Check can provide detailed information about a vehicle and all you have to do is enter the registration details. The service gives a comprehensive breakdown regarding factors including whether the car has been stolen if it has been written off after an accident and its value. There are, of course, a number of other things to look out for.
- Conduct a Thorough Inspection of the Car
When going to see a used car, first hand, there are several things to look out for that could indicate that it may have been stolen. Check the condition of the number plates and if it looks as though they are new ask why they have been replaced. Find out whether or not the car is being sold with both sets of keys, stolen cars rarely come with two sets. It is also paramount that you check the vehicle identification number (VIN) to ascertain if it has been altered.
- The Seller and the Paperwork
The circumstances under which the vehicle is being sold are also important to consider. For instance, is the seller happy to give you their name, address and contact details? Plus, do these details match the information on the cars V5 document? If the answer to any of these questions is no, then be suspicious.
Being aware of these 3 simple things will mean the chances of buying a stolen vehicle are minimised and you can drive away in your new car assured that you actually own it.