Buying a used car can be a risky investment that is why you must find out everything about the car. Apart from carefully examining the car and taking it on a test drive, you can check the history of the car to learn about the hidden problem. Whether you are buying a car through a dealership or privately, you can learn about the vehicle’s history by getting a Vehicle History Report (VHR).
When Buying Privately
Find the Vehicle Identification Number
The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) is a unique code assigned to each car. It can help in easily identifying the case of repairs, theft, or accidents.
You can try to find the VIN by looking on the dashboard, on the engine block, in the driver’s side door, or behind the rear wheels. The VIN will also be noted in the car’s manual.
You must ensure that the VIN plate hasn’t been tampered, scratched, or damaged in any way. You should also make sure that the VIN on the car and it’smanual is the same.
Find a Vehicle History Report Service
There are many online services which offer vehicle history reports. You should do some research and find the best service for your local area.
Most services will offer a free check of the vehicle’s history. This will give you general information about the make and model but won’t provide specific details about the car. You can use the free service to verify the VIN for the car. If the make and model against the provided VIN don’t match, then it indicates fraudulent activity and you should walk away from the sale.
You can upgrade to a full report for learning specific details about the car. You will have to pay for a full report about the car you are interested in. It can save you a lot of money by identifying any significant problems. A full report will include details like accident repair history, ownership of the car, maintenance records, flood repair history, rental or lease history, and periodic odometer readings.This will help you in identifying any underlying issues and making a well-informed decision.
When Buying through a Dealership
Ask the dealership to provide youthe VHR
When you are buying a car through a dealership, then you should ask them for a Vehicle History Report (VHR). Reputable dealers will have quick access to VHR services and can easily provide you with a VHR. If the dealer insists on not providing a VHR, then it is a sign that there is something wrong with the car and the dealer doesn’t want you to know about it.
Look for any potential red flags
Once you have the VHR, carefully go through it to make sure that that there are no issues with the car. You must ensure that the VHR isn’t outdated as it is a red flag which indicates that the dealer doesn’t want you to know about something which happened recently. Also, make sure that any issues you noted in the test drive are also listed on the VHR.