Car Previous Owners Check

Tracing the past of a used car

Previous Owners Check


Checking Car Ownership

A car owner check can save time, money and stress


This check is important and takes a minute or two to carry out once you know what’s what.


Dispelling the “Previous Owners” misconception

It is surprising that the majority car dealers remain unaware that if a car is two previous owners on the V5C logbook it means the car is three owners in total.

Previous owners are just that, previous, not existing.
This means if the car you are looking at buying is three previous owners from new, it’s a four-owner car.
If you buy, you become the fifth owner!

This is particularly bothersome for those motorists that believe they are buying a one owner car. The ad will say one private owner from new, but we now know its two owners.


For in-depth information about vehicle history and a car owner check you’re best off getting an up to date CarVeto.

Here is what you’ll get:


Enter a car reg



Check out the ad for the car you’re interested in buying and see if the dealer makes this mistake too (it’s rather common). If they have, why not use to negotiate money from the screen price. The more owners the car has the better deal you can expect.

With years of experience trading used cars, I have not found the previous owner issue to be much of a problem when it comes to selling up.

If a car is four years old and has had three previous owners, I’d say that’s just fine. The car changed owners every year. Some car owners like to renew regularly and a higher than average owner count provides very little evidence that a car has anything wrong with it.

It’s also common for ownership changes to occur within the same family. Dad passes the car on to son etc.


I prefer to carry out effective checks on a car and its history when deciding if I should buy it or not.


car previous owners check


I can only give an opinion here.  I tend to walk away from any car (up to 10 years old) that has more than four previous owners from new. I like to think about how easy it will be to sell the car in the future. A five-owner car will be tricky to move on. I have sold many six and seven owner cars but this larger than average number makes things tricky as motorists tend to dwell on ownership as a key factor in their buying decision.


Car owners check

If you are looking for previous owners of a used car that are not held on the V5C logbook your first step should be searching through all the service records. Look for invoices with names, addresses and phone numbers. This is the quickest way to obtain previous ownership details.

Alternatively, complete the DVLA specific vehicle information form V888. With legitimate reason, the DVLA will provide you with free car owner information.


CarVeto Checks provide valuable information about the background of a car including:

  • Number of previous owners and if DVLA information matches CarVeto’s national database
  • The period current owner has held the vehicle in their name
  • Date of change of keeper
  • Previous keeper selling date
  • When the previous keeper acquired the vehicle
  • Vehicle age
  • Date of registration in the UK
  • VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) changes
  • Car theft check
  • Outstanding finance such as Hire Purchase or PCP
  • Insurance total loss checks
  • Export/Import history
  • Incorrect mileage
  • askmid national insurance database status


Did you find this car owner check guide useful? If so, hit the share button now.

Marcus Rockey
Used Car Guy


The car history section of Used Car Guy is listed below. Go ahead and use the links to see what else can be uncovered about a car you own or plan to buy


  1. Carcheck – As I have already mentioned, you can run any UK vehicle through my personal database and check the background of a car. This article discusses the service in more detail. When you are ready, enter a car reg for an instant datasheet
  2. Free hpi check – It is surprising to see how many motorists are searching for a free car check from hpi. It doesn’t exist and every check run via their database costs money. But, there are free services available that offer an almost identical result (hint, hint)
  3. DVLA mot check – There is a great deal of data available to a motorist on the .gov websites, most of which tends to be overlooked. This article offers some good pointers and there’s a brief video to help you along
  4. Check service history – Chances are that if you are looking into car ownership you could benefit from service history data too. This guide is one of my more popular offerings
  5. Clickmechanic – I partnered with these guys four years ago. It all began with car inspections but has since morphed into servicing, mot’s and repairs with a pickup and drop off service. Next time you need some work on your car have a look at this service

Free Car History Report

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The CarVeto certificate offers the closest online data around car owner information.
Included in each report:

  1. Current keeper acquired date
  2. Number of owners past/present
  3. Period of current keeper ownership
  4. The sale date of the previous keeper
  5. Acquired date of the previous keeper
  6. Date of registration
  7. Age of car
  8. City location and/or postcode area of where the car is currently registered


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