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Research VIN Number histories online and discover potential problem cars with bad titles
By researching the VIN number, you can learn a lot about a vehicle. A VIN number tracks every event that happens to a car. Below are some common problems that can be uncovered with research - vin number reports will outline when and where the problems occurred.
Each automobile title, regardless of the state in which it was issued, contains specific information including vehicle identification, ownership, mileage, lien holders, date of purchase, and usually any derogatory notices such as salvaged, reconditioned (a salvaged vehicle that has been rebuilt by someone), flood damage, or odometer discrepancies.
Knowing the history of a used cars title information can save you thousands
of dollars and prevent you from making a disastrous used car purchase.
It's easy to research vin number history online and avoid these scenarios
Salvaged and reconditioned titles are a major problem in today's used car marketplace. Thousands of these types of cars are being sold everyday. To become salvaged, usually the car has sustained damage that equates to 80% or more of the vehicles value. Once the insurance company takes possession of the vehicle, the title becomes marked with a salvaged distinction.
There is a large, underground industry that buys and, to some degree repairs, salvaged vehicles to pass them on to unsuspecting used car buyers. It is relatively easy to have the salvaged title converted to reconditioned with marginal repairs and a law breaking inspection station. The profits from this practice are greatest with late model or high priced vehicles.
Not only are reconditioned vehicles worth substantially less than a similar vehicle with a good title, the vast majority of them are repaired with only cosmetics in mind and are unsafe to drive. Less than 5% of reconditioned salvage vehicles are roadworthy. The quality of a reconditioned vehicle is determined solely by the facility that rebuilt the vehicle, and most of these shops are more concerned with turning a quick profit than driver safety.
A few states do not "brand" reconditioned titles. It is therefore possible to "wash" a reconditioned title. For instance, Missouri is one of the states that does not brand titles (generally this is just a paper transfer; the car never actually travels to Missouri). The car is then physically resold in another state, off the "washed" Missouri title. The new title does not distinguish the vehicle as reconditioned.
Vehicles with title discrepancies, such as odometer fraud or have salvaged or reconditioned status most commonly appear on small lots and through professionals disguised as private sellers, If the title is washed, you can also find them at some of the largest, most prestigious new car dealerships. These illegal practices are most profitable on late model, rather expensive cars. The extent of these types of fraud in the marketplace would shock even the most skeptical buyer. Research VIN number history before you buy a used car. This is one of the best ways to avoid being taken.
Odometer Rollbacks are also a common way to inflate the prices on a car with little value. Odometer rollbacks often occur by one of two methods. The first is usually a late model, high mileage vehicle with one owner that is exceptionally clean. The scam artist buys the car directly from the owner and fraudulently alters the odometer disclosure statement and the odometer is rolled back. Since there is no official statement to prove higher mileage, this type of rollback is difficult to catch. A mechanical inspection by a competent mechanic is the best protection against this kind of title fraud. You can also contact the original owner when possible. If the scam artist does not buy the car directly from the original owner, he can still roll back the miles but will have to sell the car out of state because the true mileage is officially recorded on state documents. A vin number report can prove this situation conclusively.
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