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Don't Forget to Check These 5 Things When Buying a Classic Car or Truck

June 12th, 2015

The list of things to check and be aware of when you are buying a classic car is long, but there are some key things that you shouldn't forget to check and research so that you can make an informed buying decision.

Does the vehicle need immediate repairs?
If the seller just purchased the car, it is possible they discovered the car needs an expensive repair they can't afford. This may be the reason they are selling. If so, you want to know about it and get the car inspected to know the true condition of the vehicle you are about to buy. Asking the seller what repairs they would do to the vehicle if they were keeping it is a great opportunity for the seller to be upfront with everything they know about the car. Remember to make a list of what the seller says. Write it down.

What do you know about the vehicle Title?
Find out as much as you can about the Title. You need to know if the title is a "Reconditioned Title" or a "Remanufactured Title". Also look at the date the Title was transferred into the seller's name to learn more about the history of the vehicle.

Is the vehicle an everyday driver?
Asking the seller if the car is driven regularly can give you more information on the condition of the vehicle. If the car is in great mechanical condition the seller probably drives it more often. If they say hardly ever, this could be a flag that the car is not in driving condition. A car that would be expected to drive on a road rally or for an extended distance would generally be in better condition so it is worth asking the longest distance the car has been driven recently.

Does the vehicle have rust?
Find out about rust. Unfortunately many older cars have significant rust, especially in certain geographical areas. Rust is an ever growing intensely expensive repair. It is important to find out if there is any rust on the vehicle and if so how much and where. Minor surface rust on the chassis means little, however, underbody and sheet metal rust can get expensive. Get the car inspected for rust.

Is the seller happy for you to get the vehicle inspected?
Any seller with confidence in the condition of their car will not object to you having an independent inspector come out and inspect the vehicle. After all, if they were buying classic car from you, they would certainly have it inspected so that they would know the true condition of the vehicle. Now get it inspected and Happy Motoring!