Finance spike leads to warnings over used cars

Published on: January 5, 2017
Finance spike leads to warnings over used cars

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Car history expert is warning buyers of used cars that the number of vehicles for sale with money still owed on them has risen sharply in the last year. According to's figures, the overall rate of cars with owed finance has risen by two per cent to 11.5 per cent in just six months.

The figure is much worse if you look at more recent cars.'s research shows that buyers of cars up to three years old have a one-in-three chance of buying a car with owed finance. Out of 5,906 cars surveyed, one-year-old vehicles had a 31.5 per cent chance of still having money owed on them. For two-year-old cars that figure stands at 28 per cent, while it's 27 per cent for a three-year-old car.

John Byrne of said that "finance levels for cars offered for sale which are less than three years old are over 30 per cent. This means a buyer in the market for a relatively new car needs to be particularly careful. The rising levels of finance for newer cars may be attributable to the prominence of PCPs - but remember the impact for a potential buyer is the same: the finance house owns the vehicle until the last payment is made. You can lose the car if you purchase it with finance outstanding. Overall finance levels are rising again. Cartell warned the market in 2015 that finance levels had bottomed out - and would rise. We anticipate levels reaching or even surpassing 13 per cent in 2017."

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