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OMVIC Blog: Car Buying Tips

Buying a Car in Ontario? Consider a Pre-purchase Vehicle Inspection BEFORE You Buy

Oct 7

Written by: OMVIC Communications
Friday, October 7, 2016  RssIcon

Buying a car can be a huge financial commitment and no one wants to end up with buyer’s remorse due to unexpected repairs soon after purchase. That is why it’s vital consumers exercise their ‘due diligence’ before purchasing their next used vehicle – and in many cases, that means getting a pre-purchase mechanical inspection.

Pre-purchase inspections are one of the most effective ways of ensuring consumers don’t pay too much for a vehicle or get mechanic stuck with a vehicle that requires unexpected repairs. Mechanics can often spot a vehicle that’s been involved in a collision or has been poorly maintained.

But not all pre-purchase inspections end with dramatic findings; in many cases they simply uncover needed repairs due to normal wear and tear. Often the seller doesn’t even know about the problem. This gives the potential buyer and seller an opportunity to address any issues – sometimes resulting in a price change or the seller conducting the repairs as part of the purchase agreement.

Should I Have a Mechanic Inspect a Car Before Buying?

Anyone considering buying a vehicle from a private seller should insist on an inspection before turning over a dime. While consumers who purchase from a registered dealer have many protections not available to those buying privately (e.g. dealers must disclose needed repairs to major components), a mechanical inspection may also be important, particularly if the vehicle has no warranty.

How Much Will an Inspection Cost? Where Can I find a Good Mechanic?

Depending on the vehicle, pre-purchase inspections usually take about an hour, are available from many general repair working mechanicfacilities or specialized inspection companies and cost approximately $100-$150.Don’t know where to find a ‘good’ mechanic? Member-based organizations such as the Automobile Protection Association (APA) and Car Help Canada offer vehicle-related services including lists of pre-screened reputable mechanics/repair shops/appraisers. Like OMVIC, these consumer protection groups encourage consumers to conduct a pre-purchase inspection of a vehicle they are considering for purchase.

To contact one of these consumer protection groups, visit their websites below:

 

Automobile Protection Association: www.apa.ca

Car Help Canada: www.carhelpcanada.com

For more car-buying tips, visit omvic.ca


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