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OMVIC Blog: Car Buying Tips

Author: Created: Friday, August 14, 2015 RssIcon
By OMVIC Communications on Friday, March 19, 2021

With an increase in online shopping and working from home, online scams are more widespread, and consumers must stay informed to protect themselves from fraud. Buying from an OMVIC-registered dealer ensures you’re protected by Ontario’s consumer protection laws and have access to the Motor Vehicle Dealers Compensation Fund.

One example of fraud includes a dealer posting an ad for a non-existent car to gain access to your finances or personal information. As a consumer, asking the right questions and recognizing red flags can save you time and money.

Check out these three tips to better recognize possible signs of a fraudulent car advertisement and ask the right questions to protect yourself when buying a car.


By OMVIC Communications on Friday, February 26, 2021

CarFaxDiscovering a newly purchased vehicle has an unsavoury past can cause major headaches: knowing a vehicle’s history can keep you protected. Finding undisclosed accidents, unpaid liens, unreturned recalls and more can lead to unexpected, expensive payments – or worse – for consumers.

Before signing for your next vehicle, check through a CARFAX Canada Vehicle History Report (VHR) to get the details you need to protect your wallet – and yourself.


By OMVIC Communications on Friday, February 19, 2021

CarFaxA CARFAX Canada Vehicle History Report (VHR)’s registration, service record, and open recall sections tell you about the condition of the car, how it’s been cared for and whether there are any defects associated with the model you are considering.

Shawn Vording, Vice President of Automotive Sales at CARFAX Canada, takes us through all three sections and points out what consumers need to pay attention to.


By OMVIC Communications on Friday, February 12, 2021

CarFaxUnderstanding a vehicle’s history can be challenging, but CARFAX Canada reports offer easy-to-understand icons summarizing the vehicle highlights corresponding with each section in the VHR, including liens, accident damage, branding, service records, open recalls and whether the vehicle has been stolen. The icons make the report easier to understand so you can feel confident in your purchase.

A CARFAX Canada history report offers consumers an overview of a vehicle's condition and value. We've asked Shawn Vording, Vice President of Sales at CARFAX Canada, to guide us through each section, starting with report summary icons, lien check and accident damage.


By OMVIC Communications on Friday, February 5, 2021

Understanding the UVIPA CARFAX Canada Vehicle History Report (VHR) is essential for anyone buying a used car. Knowing a vehicle’s history helps you determine its safety and value. It will also let you know if you need to take any additional steps. For example, a history report may identify if the vehicle was in an accident, prompting you to ensure it gets repaired. A VHR also helps you understand the vehicle’s maintenance history, so you know how well it has been cared for and its overall condition. This information offers peace of mind and can be helpful when negotiating a fair price. This month, we’re focusing on how to understand the CARFAX Canada VHR. In this post, we go over the differences between a CARFAX Canada and a UVIP and summarize how the VHR can help consumers. In the remaining weeks, we will speak to Shawn Vording, Vice President of Sales at CARFAX Canada, and get him to explain each section of a VHR in detail.


By OMVIC Communications on Thursday, February 4, 2021

Understanding the UVIPIf you’re buying a car privately, the Used Vehicle Information Package (UVIP) is indispensable. Remembering what to check for may help protect you from fraud and make you a more knowledgeable consumer. We’ve created a graphic to help you remember five important things to check on a UVIP.


By OMVIC Communications on Wednesday, January 20, 2021


The UVIP’s final two sections are critical: they indicate whether a lender could repossess your newly bought car. They lay out the final details to transfer the seller’s car into your possession.

The UVIP’s fourth section shows whether the car you want to buy has a lien on it. If a car has a lien, it means the car’s owner has not paid the lender what he owes for the vehicle.

What does this mean for you? If the lienholder still has an interest in the vehicle, they could repossess it.

The fifth section holds the bill of sale which you and the seller sign before taking it to Service Ontario. They will register the car in your name.

Remember: if you buy a car privately, the seller must provide you with the UVIP. It is your responsibility to check for inaccuracies.

By OMVIC Communications on Saturday, January 16, 2021


The UVIP’s second and third sections offer areas for car-buyers to fall into traps: it’s important to stay informed. Rolled back odometers, fraudulent names and unclear seller locations can lead to trouble.

Our last post explained why consumers buying cars privately should understand the Used Vehicle Information Package (UVIP), a document designed to help buyers learn about a used car’s history. 

There are no consumer protections when buying a car privately: the more you know about the vehicle and the seller, the safer you will be.

This week focuses on the UVIP’s second and third sections: ownership history.

By OMVIC Communications on Friday, January 15, 2021


Last month’s blog discussed what car buyers should know if they buy from a registered dealer or a private seller. Buying from a registered dealer offers protections, but buying privately is risky: if something goes wrong with a purchase, OMVIC cannot help.

If you buy privately, protect yourself. Understanding how to read a Used Vehicle Information Package (UVIP) will help you learn more about the car you buy from a private seller. It may help keep you safe from fraud or unsafe vehicles.

By OMVIC Communications on Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Buying Dealer

This month we discussed what you need to know whether you buy privately or from an OMVIC-Registered dealer. Whichever way you choose to purchase a vehicle, educate yourself and learn about your rights—and risks—involved.

In our December 11th blog post, we highlighted the protections that come with buying from a registered dealer. We created an infographic for this week’s post to remind you of those rights if you buy from an OMVIC-Registered dealer.

By OMVIC Communications on Saturday, December 19, 2020

Buying Dealer

In our December 4th blog post, we discussed the pros and cons of buying a car privately. Because you don’t get the same protections as buying from an OMVIC-Registered dealer, you should be vigilant.

For this week’s post, we created an infographic reminding you about what to know if you buy from a private seller.

For our final blog post of 2020, we’ll present you with another infographic to remind you of the benefits you get if you decide to buy a car from an OMVIC-Registered dealer.

By OMVIC Communications on Friday, December 11, 2020

Buying Dealer

Last week we discussed how to buy a car privately. This week we explain what you should know if you decide to buy from an OMVIC-Registered dealer.

Who are OMVIC-Registered dealers?

If someone wants to be a dealer or a salesperson in Ontario, they must register with OMVIC. It is the law.

To be eligible for OMVIC registration, dealers and salespeople must undergo background checks. They must pass an automotive law and ethics course covering the Motor Vehicle Dealers Act and the Consumer Protection ActGeorgian College offers courses to help prospective dealers get their license.

Does that mean every Ontario business trading in vehicles is registered with OMVIC?

No. It pays to check.

By OMVIC Communications on Saturday, December 5, 2020

Buying Privately

You have many decisions when purchasing a vehicle, but the first will undoubtedly be whether to buy from a private seller or a registered dealer. How will you know what is best for you?

For this first week of December, we'll review what you need to know before buying a car privately; next week we'll discuss the buying process from an OMVIC Registered dealer. In our final December installment, we'll compare both so you can make an informed decision about which one is best for you.

So, let's start with private sellers.

By OMVIC Communications on Friday, November 20, 2020


As Financial Literacy Month wraps up, let’s look at one of the most important steps in buying a car: getting vehicle financing. You've identified the vehicle you want, you've asked all the right questions, you understand how to read a contract: now you need to figure out the best way to pay for your vehicle.

We contacted two experts on vehicle financing, George Iny and John Raymond from the Automobile Protection Agency (APA) to answer some common questions car buyers have.

By OMVIC Communications on Friday, November 20, 2020


For the last week of Financial Literacy Month, we’re continuing our discussion on vehicle financing with experts from the Automobile Protection Agency (APA).  We’re looking at two issues: long-term loans and financing a vehicle if you buy a car privately.