97% of Australians confused when buying second hand car privately, Allianz research finds

A woman stands in front of a pink backdrop, looking confused.

Right now the second hand car market is booming. 

Delays in new vehicle supplies, as well as increasing prices, the need to save money and a desire to be more sustainable has led many to opt for second hand over new when purchasing a car, Allianz research has found.

Despite the enthusiasm for buying used cars though, Allianz also says that a staggering 97% of those surveyed had experienced some confusion when buying a car from a private seller. A further 82% who had purchased a second hand car from a private seller, had also been hit with additional costs. These included: mechanical repairs after the purchase and extra registration costs as a result of where they live.

To help dispel some of the confusion around buying a second hand car from a private seller, Allianz has produced a ‘Private Buyer’s Manual.’

Tips for buying a car from a private seller

In its guide, Allianz gives tips on researching second hand cars, what to do when you inspect a second hand car for sale and what to do when you’re ready to buy.

When sussing out a fair price for a used car, which can be a sticking point for big purchases, Allianz gives the following recommendations:

  • Compare cars that are the same make and model, of a similar age and that have a similar number of kilometres on the odometer. 
  • Make sure you factor in all the costs involved - includes stamp duty, registration, transfer costs, maintenance and repair costs, plus insurance.
  • Consider gathering car insurance quotes before you buy. You can start comparing policies over at Mozo’s compare comprehensive car insurance page. Click on the ‘go to site’ button to get a quote from each individual provider.

Other things to consider when doing research is what size car you need, safety features and the fuel economy. 

According to Allianz, a good second hand car advert should fully outline the safety features. These will be about things like airbags, seat belts, overspeed warnings, lane departure warnings and stability control. 

In terms of the fuel economy, Allianz recommends checking the environmental impact of your future car with the Australian government’s green vehicle guide.

When inspecting a potential car to buy, typically you’d consider the interior, exterior, taking the car for a test drive and checking the car’s paperwork.

Of note, about 30% of Aussies have bought a second hand car without taking it for a test drive first, says Allianz. A test drive is important to help detect problems with the car that aren’t easily noted from it simply sitting parked.

Getting insurance for second hand cars

It is especially important to know that CTP (compulsory third party) insurance is a must all over Australia. Although what it is called and how it works will vary from state to state, so know what the rules are where you live. Check out our quick guide to CTP insurance in different states and territories to find out more. 

It's also important to know what different types of car insurance are available. For instance, CTP insurance is the bare minimum you must have to legally drive in Australia. It provides cover for people injured in an incident, but does not cover your actual car or anyone else’s car you may be responsible for damaging.

Third party car insurance provides liability cover for damage you may cause to someone else’s wheels and comprehensive car insurance offers cover for your own wheels. The latter will generally come with the highest premiums, but could help you save money in the long run, should your car ever be in need of repairs.

Want to see what comprehensive car insurance is available right now? Head to Mozo’s compare comprehensive car insurance page for a list of options. Or take a look at the policies on offer below.

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