Buying a used car?

Motor traders are customers too. All the advice that your customers are likely to have sought before thinking of buying a used car from you, is likely to apply just as much – perhaps even more so – to you.

So, what are some of our tips and suggestions when you are in the market for buying a used car – and, just as importantly, how might your choice impact on your motor trade insurance?

Your market

  • as a motor trader, you are constantly putting yourself in the shoes of your existing and potential customers – what are they looking for when buying a car?
  • from that customer’s point of view, of course, it is widely known that a car that is only one year old may be as much as 27% cheaper than a new one – as a motor trader, you want to meet the demand by buying used cars to sell on to your customers;

Stolen vehicles

  • if there is one thing you want to avoid, that is buying a used car that has been stolen – you lose the car once it is recovered, unless you have made adequate checks, the loss is unlikely to be covered by your motor trade business insurance, and you might find yourself unwittingly breaking the law;
  • the official government website offers a simple guide to the basic checks that need to be made and these include making a record of the registration number, make, model and age of the vehicle, check that these correspond with the details in the logbook (V5C certificate), and run checks through the DVLA’s vehicle enquiry service;
  • make sure that any vehicle that requires one has an MOT certificate, that it is up to date, and that the MOT history corresponds with the vehicle’s history;

The cars you choose

  • there is a host of considerations affecting your choice of used car;
  •  it is not price alone, of course, but a question of meeting the demand of your customers and those makes and models with greatest appeal;
  • for many, that might be a question of cars that are most economical to run;
  • a smaller engine can consumes less fuel, for example, is likely to be petrol-driven, but electric and hybrid cars are rapidly gaining ground in the consumer market;
  • the make, model, performance and age of the vehicle may also have an impact on the cost of motor insurance for the individual customer and that of your own motor trade insurance as the dealer;


  • what you pay for any used car you buy for onward sale to a customer, of course, is a matter for your own commercial judgment;
  • it hardly needs saying that there are costs to you involved in any such transaction and your goal at the end of the day is to make a profit;
  • the price you pay for the used cars you buy, therefore, needs to cover the cost of your time, maintenance, servicing and preparation of the vehicle for onward sale, showroom storage and a proportion of the other many overhead expenses your business bears, including your motor trade insurance cover.

It is in the provision of precisely that motor trade insurance that we have established our reputation here at Road Runner Insurance. To arrange the cover you need why not get in touch with us now.