With thousands of flood-damaged cars hitting the used car and auction markets this year, Australians are being warned to check a vehicle’s history before making a purchase.
David Scognamiglio, Head of Australia’s most comprehensive consumer vehicle research site, Carhistory.com.au said while some will be advertised as flood damaged, there’s no obligation for private sellers to disclose this information.
The warning comes after a national survey of 1,000 Australians in the market for a used car found that less than 16% of respondents said they would conduct an enquiry to check for written off status of a vehicle.*
This is despite 44% of those surveyed stating they had an increased concern about potential flood damage to used vehicles – with a significant 6% of those surveyed saying they or a member of their family had become a victim of fraud or deceit in relation to purchasing a used vehicle in the last 12 months. The average cost of the fraud was $2470 per incident.
Mr Scognamiglio said the research suggests many buyers are unaware of simple steps they can take to protect themselves.
“There has never been a more important time to ensure the history of a car is understood prior to entering into a sale. With flood and cyclone damaged vehicles, there may be expensive, hidden problems which don’t come to light for some time. Even new vehicles affected by floods will not carry manufacturer warranties,” he said.
“Flood-damaged cars can move between state boarders, with different rules applying in all districts. With car repairers strained to the limit, some of the salvageable cars are simply being washed and offered for sale as they stand. A written-off check on only one state registry will not include information on whether this vehicle has been flood damaged in other Australian states or territories.
“What buyers may not be aware of is that for $30, they can get a Carhistory Report that checks what has happened to that particular car in any state and territory,” he said.
www.Carhistory.com.au has devised a checklist for flood-damaged vehicles.
What to Look for When Buying a Used Car:
Check the glove box for a tide mark
Look under the seat mountings for signs of water
Look out for debris in suspension components
Open the fuse box and check for debris or rust
Lift seat covers and inspect original fabric
Inspect the carpet and check for a musty/damp smell
Get a Carhistory Report to determine if the vehicle was written-off due to flood or storm damage anywhere in Australia.
Carhistory.com.au brings together extensive data on millions of vehicles from several industry and Government databases. Each report includes: the vehicle details, any outstanding finance (REVs check) recorded on the vehicle, a written-off or stolen check, current valuation, odometer checks, sales listings and safety and omission ratings. Reports can be purchased instantly by entering the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).
DJR’s Texas tour nets another pair of top 15 finis... : The 2013 V8 Supercars Championship has wrapped up its first venture into North America playing to a crowd of nearly 69,000 enthusi...
Tough end to US trip for FPR : Ford Performance Racing has endured a tough end to its initial American sojourn despite the fans of Austin, Texas embracing the fi...
Victory lane for Coulthard : Standing on the podium for all four of this weekend's races has been a career high for Lockwood Racing's Fabian Coulthard, who sna...
Rick Kelly takes top 10 clean-sweep in Austin, Tex... : Rick Kelly has vaulted himself into 12th place in this year's V8 Supercars Championship after his best event of the 2013 season.
Stars and Stripes’ inspired livery for Heavy Haula... : Tim Slade’s #47 Heavy Haulage Australia Racing Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG V8 Supercar will be sporting a new ‘stars and stripes’ inspir...
Kelly brothers get first hand Jack Daniel's experi... : This weekend Australia's V8 Supercars will head to Austin, Texas for the V8 Supercars Austin 400, for what is sure to be a celebra...
FPR set for Wild West : Ford Performance Racing is on its way to Texas and the team is not only excited to showcase its Falcon race cars to the American F...
D'Alberto pumped for V8 Supercars' inaugural USA r... : Tony D'Alberto is aiming high in the V8 Supercars Championship inaugural race meeting in North America this weekend.
Nissan Altima a familiar sight for American race f... : Nissan Motorsport will find itself as the 'home team' at the inaugural Austin 400 at the spectacular Circuit of The Americas in Au...