Buying a used car made safer

There’s always a certain amount of risk involved when buying a used car – and sadly us Dub lovers aren’t immune to being fleeced by Arthur Daley characters happy to pass off a nail as a ‘good, honest motor’. New rules promise to make the whole process a lot safer, but you still need to do the usual checks…

On 1 October 2015, big changes are planned for our consumer laws and canny used car buyers need to be aware of their new rights. The Sale of Goods Act is to be replaced by the Consumer Rights Act 2015 which crucially allows consumers to ask for a full refund in the first 30 days of buying any product that subsequently turns out to be faulty – including cars. Commonly referred to as the ‘early right to reject’, this new legislation replaces the previous rule which stated that retailers only need to repair or replace a faulty item or part.

for sale sign

If a defect is found after 30 days (but within six months) used car buyers are then entitled to a repair or replacement. However, the new legislation stipulates that dealers will have only one chance at repair or replacement. If they fail, consumers are entitled to a full or partial refund.

private sale

There’s no doubt used car buyers will feel instantly empowered when the new laws come into force, but that doesn’t mean you can afford to be complacent when buying secondhand. As far as we are aware, these new rules only apply ‘traders’. If you buy a car from a neighbour, a bloke in a pub or someone off the internet, you’ve got no comeback if things go wrong. You’ll still need to do all the normal checks, go through all the receipts, and dig into a car’s history in order to avoid buying a hound.


The opinions expressed here are the personal opinions of the author and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of VW Heritage.

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