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buying the car from then you cannot be sure of its history.



If you are thinking of buying a second hand car, you should get the vehicle independently checked by a mechanic to avoid any unpleasant surprises in the future. If you do not know the person you are buying the car from then you cannot be sure of its history. So certainly have it checked. If you are buying from a garage, you should get a warranty for the car - if they are not willing to give you a warranty on the vehicle, this should immediately raise concerns regarding the condition of the vehicle.

An NCT or Commercial Vehicle Roadworthiness (CVRT) certificate is a check on a set of minimum requirements at the time of the test and does not confer any warranty. Buying a car with a valid NCT certificate does not guarantee the vehicle is in a roadworthy condition at the time of purchase. A roadworthy certificate should not be considered a substitute for a comprehensive technical examination of a vehicle before buying.

Check the NCT certificate is not fraudulent and that the vehicle has genuinely passed the test. There are some cases where fake discs are used in an attempt to raise the value of the vehicle. You can check this out by visiting or

Before purchasing a second hand vehicle, always do a comprehensive background check. This may uncover details which the buyer is intentionally trying to hide such as whether or not the vehicle was ever written-off, the true mileage of the vehicle or if there is outstanding finance on the vehicle.

The NCT Certificate now shows the vehicle’s mileage history. Where available the mileage history comprises of the reading associated with the most recent and three prior NCTs. As this is a new system, it will only show mileage recorded during tests conducted from July 2014 onwards. Also, since July 2014, the most recent reading is recorded on the NCT disc which should be displayed on the windscreen.

Watch out for a car that seems cheap or costs less than others on the market of the same age/mileage. The car is unlikely to be as good value as it seems. You should get the car independently inspected before buying, to check roadworthiness and whether its components are at, or near, the end of their lifespan. You also need to consider that, in addition to having fewer modern safety features, you'll probably end up paying out more in maintenance costs, because older vehicles with high mileage need more frequent maintenance.

Don’t compromise on safety when purchasing a second hand vehicle, don’t place your decision purely on cost, make sure you are getting value.

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