Most used car buyers say that outstanding finance is “always a deal breaker”, according to a new survey. polled 100 callers to its Glasgow call centre last month and asked: “When buying a used vehicle, is outstanding finance always a deal breaker?” Sixty-five of the callers answered “yes”, while the other 35 said “no”.

And the vehicle history check company said that was a problem, as one in four cars on UK roads had debt secured against them.

Mark Bailey, head of parent company CDL Vehicle Information Systems, said: “Under popular types of finance agreement, notably personal contract purchase, ownership of the vehicle is often retained by the finance company.

“The crux for buyers is that the finance provider can be within their rights to seize the vehicle back. To complicate matters, the picture has changed a bit in recent years. As some of the respondents who said finance wasn’t necessarily a deal breaker pointed out, third-party payments can sometimes be made to clear the outstanding debt.

“On the other hand, some of those who said finance was a deal breaker had been bitten before and would rather walk away.

“As always when buying a used car, there might be things the seller doesn’t know, or things they’d rather not tell you, so do your own history check to find out exactly what you’re getting into.”

If you’re interested in buying your next car on finance, why not check out our Car Finance Calculator to see what deals you could get from dealers?

Tristan Shale-Hester


June 15, 2018