do I need to HPI Check my car? Well basically so that you know that
it is actually your car. 375,000 cars are stolen each year. Many
get sold on to unsuspecting buyers. If you are one of them you will
have to give the car back to its rightful owner and the crook that
sold it to you will be long gone with your cash.
1 in 12 cars checked by the trade last year showed mileage discrepancies.
You could buy car that is worth a fraction of what you pay for it.
450,000 cars are 'written-off' by insurers annually because of
accident damage. Many are written off because the insurance company
deem it incapable of safe repair. Make sure that you don't buy
the one thats been sneaked back on the road again.
Also make sure that there is no outstanding finance on your car.
HPI Check Question
What do the categories mean when is a car written off?
Category A: Total burnout. No value left
in the vehicle
Category B: Break only. Value lies in salvage
Category C: Damage to car is more than
total value of car
Category D: Repair would cost almost as
much as the vehicle is worth. Better to write off than repair. No comebacks
for the insurers
WARNING - For people not considering an HPI check on
their next purchase
You need to carry out the HPI Check yourself, before you buy
the vehicle - the Guarantee is not transferable.
Sunday 27th February ‘BBC 5 Live Investigates’ set to report
that unwitting used car buyers are being chased for large sums of money
owed on loans taken out by previous owners.
HPI is warning consumers to be vigilant on the risks of finance
fraud and get protection with the HPI Check.
The BBC 5 Live report suggests that car owners raising finance with
logbook loans secured on their vehicles are selling the vehicles before
settling their accounts, leaving buyers at risk of losing their cash
- and the car.
Nicola Johnson, Consumer Services Manager for HPI explains, “We
are increasingly aware of this type of activity, and would advise buyers
to always conduct an HPI Check to discover if a vehicle is still on
finance. HPI are the only provenance check company that has the facility
to register Bill of Sale agreements against a vehicle, and if the buyer
who was the focus of the 5 Live investigation had checked her car with
HPI before she had bought it, it would have revealed the logbook loan
recorded against it.
“If a vehicle is sold on, still with outstanding finance, the finance
company has every right to repossess the vehicle. Bill of Sale style
agreements have no innocent purchaser protection, unlike hire purchase-style
agreements, and HPI welcomes the government’s proposed code of practice
on Bill of Sale agreements which would help rectify this situation.
“Holding over 7million registered finance agreements including many
‘log book loan’ type agreements, an HPI Check will inform the buyer
of any finance interest that has been registered with HPI by a lender
and has not been subsequently removed. Details of the loan type and
the lender are contained within the HPI Check report, enabling the enquirer
to check the status of the finance agreement with the lender if they
feel that is necessary.”
The HPI Guarantee
Car buyers who buy a genuine HPI Check for themselves at hpicheck.com
are also protected by the HPI Guarantee * which protects customers for
any loss on the rare occasions where finance houses have not provided
HPI with up to date data.
Nicola Johnson concludes, “The best way to avoid being a victim of finance
fraud is to conduct a history check with a reputable service such as
HPI. Avoid cheap history checks, as these do not include finance information.
As with most things, you will only get what you pay for.”
The HPI Guarantee
HPI, we work hard to ensure that the data we receive and manage is the
best available but no data source is perfect. That's why your HPI vehicle
check includes the HPI Guarantee. Subject to the HPI Guarantee Terms
& Conditions, the HPI Guarantee provides up to £30,000 (£15,000 for
written off vehicles) reimbursement of financial loss you suffer arising
from inaccurate or incomplete information we supply to you as part of
the HPI Check.
As you'd expect from HPI, the cover is the most comprehensive available
Here is a summary of the main conditions:
You must supply us with the Vehicle Registration Mark (VRM) and
the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) to be eligible for maximum cover
available under the HPI Guarantee. The HPI Guarantee will not apply
if we advise you that the VRM does not match the VIN, so make sure the
information you supply is accurate (pay particular attention to '5's
and 'S's, '2's and 'Z's).
Before you buy the vehicle, you must make sure that all vehicle
details provided by HPI match both the vehicle and its accompanying
paperwork, and notify us of any discrepancies. As a minimum, you must
obtain and check the V5 registration document with us, using our Document
Check facility, prior to purchase.
You must check that all the VIN markings on the vehicle match
each other and the corresponding V5 registration document.
You must keep and produce to us on request a written receipt
for your purchase, signed by the seller, containing the key information
needed to identify the seller and the vehicle (e.g. the seller's name
and address, the identity and mileage of the vehicle purchased, the
date of purchase and the amount you paid).
If you are buying the vehicle privately, you must buy it from
the keeper, at the address shown on the V5. You must also check the
identity of the seller.
You must buy the vehicle in a reasonably prudent manner (for
example - claims will not be considered if you have paid 30% below the
retail market value).
The cover provided is based on the car's value. In the case where
HPI provides incorrect data affecting vehicle title (such as theft or
outstanding finance), the HPI Guarantee will cover up to £30,000, either
in compensation or the costs needed to obtain good title to the vehicle
(at HPI's discretion). In the case where HPI provides incorrect data
affecting the vehicle's condition, the HPI Guarantee will cover up to
£15,000 or 50% of the market value of the car, whichever is the lower.
The HPI Guarantee does not cover the vehicle's descriptive information
(including import status), mileage, value, V5 registration document
checks, or if the loss has arisen as a result of a fraudulent transaction.
The HPI Guarantee is valid for two years from the date of the
The vehicle must be bought and registered in mainland Britain
(i.e. it excludes Northern Ireland). If it has been imported, HPI does
not guarantee its history prior to arrival in this country.
If you make a claim under the HPI Guarantee, we reserve the right
to inspect the vehicle and to make the final decision as to its condition
You are advised to consult the full
HPI Guarantee Terms & Conditions for full details of the cover provided.
in 3 cars has something to hide!
HPI aims to uncover the truth behind used cars, 1 in 3 of which
have some form of hidden history. We hold details of over 55
million cars nationwide, and can inform you instantly of issues
outstanding with your prospective vehicle purchase.
HPI is the UK's leading independent information source for the
motor, caravan and marine industries.
if my HPI Check shows a problem?
If the car you want to buy turns out to have an undesirable
history, the next steps you take will depend on the problem
that is uncovered. Here are examples of potential problems and
what actions could be taken next.
If the vehicle comes up as stolen, you should not proceed with
the purchase unless HPI can give you the all clear. We will
contact the police to check whether they need to take any action
and then let you know what will be happening.
HPI will provide details of the companies involved and give
you a reference number so you can contact them directly to discuss
the outstanding finance agreement. A settlement can usually
be agreed between the seller, the finance house and the purchaser.
If a vehicle appears on this register, it has been written-off
by an insurance company. If the damage occurred after 1996,
HPI can tell you whether it is a category 'A' or 'B' write-off,
which means it must never reappear on the road; or a category
'C' or 'D', which can be roadworthy following proper repair
and inspection. If the total loss is a result of a theft claim,
we will contact the insurance company on your behalf.
This register provides details of written-off vehicles that
have been properly repaired and have passed an independent Thatcham-approved
structural examination. HPI have access to all car accident
history records and can usually provide a copy of the original
inspection for a fee.
This provides confirmation of details recorded by the manufacturer.
If the description supplied doesn't match the car or the V5
registration document, HPI will investigate through the DVLA,
This is a register of vehicles that are high fraud or theft
risks, such as rental cars. If a vehicle appears on this register,
HPI will pass your details to whoever placed the security interest
so that they can contact you for information regarding the sale.
Number plate transfer
This will show every legitimate plate change since April 1990.
You are advised not to buy a car until it has been given the
all clear under all its previous plates.
If the unique Vehicle Identification Number (VIN, also known
as the chassis number) on the vehicle doesn't match the V5 registration
document, this may indicate that it's either stolen or a ringer.
If there is a discrepancy, HPI can investigate and contact the
police, if requested.
If your HPI used car check provides a warning on the issue date
or serial number of the V5 registration document, HPI can investigate
the true status of the documentation at no extra charge. If
it turns out to be fraudulent, we will advise you to notify