Car Previous Owners Check

Previous Owners Check


Checking Car Ownership


A free car owner check can save you money and stress


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


Dispelling the “Previous Owners” misconception

It seems that most car dealers aren’t even aware that if a car is two previous owners on the V5C logbook it actually means the car is three owners in total.

Previous owners are just that, previous, not existing.

To get in-depth information about a cars history and ownership you’re best off getting an up to date hpi check.


So, if the car you’re looking at is three previous owner from new, it’s a four owner car. If you buy it you’re the fifth owner!


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

Check out the ad for the car you’re interested in buying and see if the dealers made this mistake too. If they have you can use it as a bartering tool when you’re haggling for money off of the screen price, and the more owners the car has the better deal you can expect.

In my experience and in most cases, the previous owner issue is not a real problem at all. If a car is four years old and has had three previous owners I’d say that this is just fine. The cars changed owners every year. Some car owners like to change their cars regularly and a higher than average owner count provides very little evidence that a car has anything wrong with it. It’s also pretty common for ownership changes to occur within the same family. Dad passed the car on to his son etc.

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


When too many owners is too many owners

I can only give my opinion here.  I tend to walk away from any car that has more than four previous owners from new. A five owner car will be tricky to sell in the future and that’s the way you need to look at it too. I have sold many six owner cars and it’s taken many months to sell them for any reasonable or profitable price.

car previous owners check


If you are looking for previous owners of a used car that are not held on the V5C logbook I suggest going through all of the service records, looking 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 further information about a used car.


Hpi Checks provide valuable information about the background of a car including registered keepers and historical ownership. You also learn of:

  • VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) changes
  • Number of previous owners and if DVLA information matches the national database
  • Car theft check
  • Outstanding finance such as Hire Purchase or PCP
  • Insurance total loss checks
  • Export/Import history
  • Incorrect mileages


Enter your car registration below for instant information

enter a car registration number here to learn more about previous car ownership and other legal information
More articles about car background checks:

Visit this page for HPI Check information
Visit this page for Instant Car Check information
Visit this page for MOT information
Click here for my Service History Checking Guide
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