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Documented vehicle history affects 90% of car buyer decisions

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Research conducted among 2,000 motorists has shown that 90% of car buyers are more likely to make a purchase when if presented with accurate vehicle service history documentation, revealed HPI.

HPI found that 75% of motorists would be completely put off buying a car without a full service history and that 27%, would expect to receive a discount when considering the purchase of a vehicle with an incomplete vehicle history.

Nearly half (48%), meanwhile, felt that knowing a car has its full-service history stamps and has never previously been written off or scrapped are jointly the most important pieces of information to know before making a purchase.

The research follows an investigation carried out earlier this year by AutoExpress, which resulted in BBC One’s Rip-Off Britain consumer watchdog show looking at two of the UK’s largest dealer groups – Pendragon and Arnold Clark – which offered for sale cars discovered to be insurance ‘write-offs’.

Commenting on the results of the HPI survey, HPI’s consumer director, Fernando Garcia, said: “HPI research shows that a comprehensive profile will give a buyer more confidence that the car has been looked after and that the asking price is fair.

“79% of respondents said they’d view a vehicle with a full digital history as more valuable and 26% felt that full documentation and receipts for repair work could add more than 10%.”

Back in March, AutoExpress highlighted the extent of written-off vehicles re-entering the market after significant collision damage was repaired.

While insurers must inform the DVLA of vehicles it has written off, legislation does not require them to register the vehicles on the Motor Insurance Anti-Fraud & Theft Register (MIAFTR).

MIAFTR is the sole source used by most provenance check services – including HPI and Experian – to help retailers and consumers identify a severely damaged vehicle.

A Freedom of Information request found that the loophole was resulting in tens of thousands of damaged cars being repaired and sold on.

Following the investigation into the sale of write-off vehicles by Auto Express and BBC Rip-Off Britain earlier this year Vehicle Remarketing Association (VRA) chairman, Sam Watkins, called for an “urgently needed” centralised national service history database.

HPI claims that its new virtual garage app makes the process of selling, buying and owning cars simple and secure.

The free app, myHPI, was created by HPI’s consumer team and uses real-time data to generate live vehicle history records.

Billed as “the most advanced virtual garage tool available to motorists” it offers data available on each vehicle and will evolve with new features and upgrades to provide motorists with even greater vehicle data access.

Features of the myHPI app which can benefit motorists include access to any past HPI Check reports and valuations, safe digital storage for all car-related documents and service, maintenance or repairs receipts, automatic alerts for MOT and tax due dates, customisable notifications for other important events such as insurance renewal, a calendar showing key events in the car’s lifecycle and free manufacturer recall updates (which usually cost £2.95).

“This is an exciting new consumer tool from HPI and a valuable resource for millions of used car owners around the UK. The technology behind it clearly demonstrates our ongoing commitment to innovation with our customers firmly in mind,” said Garcia.

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