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Must ask questions when buying and selling a car

When it comes to buying and selling a car it’s important to ask the right questions. Failing to do so can leave you out of pocket. So, to help you on your way we’ve come up with questions to ask the buyer or the seller.

Who is the buyer or seller?

It’s important to know who you are buying from and who you are selling too. If you’re trading-in a tiny, old hatchback, a dealer isn’t likely to offer you over the odds. Likewise, if you’re selling a car with a big engine and lots of leather, there’s little point in taking calls from anyone under the age of 30. Knowing your audience is key when buying and selling a car.
 Top questions to ask-
How long have you owned the car?
Why are you selling your car?
How many previous owners has there been? 

What’s the history?

When it comes to cars – knowing the history is everything. For buyers a written-off, clocked or stolen car could easily be masquerading as a dream buy.  For sellers, a clean or justified history could be an excellent selling point. “Whether it’s a private seller or a dealer, a full service history and all the relevant DVLA documents make it much easier for the purchase to go through”said Neil Addley, Managing Director from Trusted Dealers. “A full main dealer service history is worth around £300 extra on a used car, although this falls off as vehicles get older.
Top questions to ask-
Is it HPI clear?
Where did you buy this car from?

Has it been given TLC?

Okay so maybe as a seller you don’t wash and wax your car every week – but a well maintained vehicle will sell quicker. This means repairing any minor mechanical faults and paintwork damage. If you’re a smoker it can be hard to get rid of the smell from the upholstery, you may need to get it valeted a few times before the smell goes. To give your car a big “thumbs up” a car history check from HPI is a valuable document to show prospective buyers. If there is anything flagged on your report you can discuss this with HPI and we will tell you the best way to move forward in selling your car.
For buyers, the first tell-tale area to check is the exterior. Is there rust, large dents, a darker or lighter paint shade? A well maintained car is easy to spot, trust your judgement.
Top questions to ask
Has anything in the car been replaced?
Can I get this vehicle independently inspected?

What are the fine details when buying and selling a car?

Questions such as ‘How much is your insurance ad road tax’ are often questions we forget to ask when viewing a car. If the car you’re about to buy is cheaper than your insurance premium, is it really worth it? As a buyer it’s important to see the V5C documents and even old tax discs. The car should be ready to test when you arrive, if not – the seller could be hiding something. For sellers, ensure the car is ready to test drive, and is fuelled, cleaned, battery charged and all the paperwork is available.
Top questions to ask-
Do you have the V5C document?
Can I see its MOT and service history
Is there any outstanding finance on the car?
How much is your average insurance and road tax?
As always, we would recommend a full history check with HPI for any car you’re considering buying –and it would do no harm to be able to present any potential buyers for your own car with a squeaky-clean HPI report too.
Happy buying and equally happy selling.