Tesco Personal Finance is offering motorists the opportunity to check the status of a used car online before buying, for half the price of other providers.
The online checker helps motorists to check if a car:
- has finance outstanding on it
- is registered as an insurance write-off
- is recorded as stolen on the Police National Computer
- has been clocked
One comprehensive car status checker costs only £19.99—half the £40 fee charged by many competitors. For multiple checks, Tesco offers up to five car checks within a 60-day period for £24.99. Both Tesco Clubcard customers and motorists insured by Tesco will be eligible for an additional 20% discount. The online checker is powered by Experian, the global information solutions company.
Between three and four million new finance agreements are taken out on vehicles each year and there are currently around 8.3 million live finance agreements, so buying a vehicle with outstanding finance is a big risk for used-car buyers.
Around 500,000 cars are registered as write-offs each year. Some are deemed too dangerous by the insurance companies to return to the roads. For the rest, the cost of repair is far greater than the value of the car. Still they find their way back on to the roads as fraudsters fix them up and try to sell them as legitimate vehicles. While they look presentable, anyone unfortunate enough to have bought one without having checked out its status will have paid more than it was worth.
Around 160,000 cars are recorded as stolen by the police every year. Overall statistics show that 1 in 3 cars have a hidden history and this product is designed to help the motorists avoid pitfalls prior to purchase.
Allan Burns, head of Insurance at Tesco Personal Finance, comments: "We would encourage motorists to shop around for their car checks in the same way they would for their vehicle as there are considerable savings to be made. We are entering the market to offer our customers a quick and simple comprehensive service that gives them peace of mind at a great price."