The allure of owning a classic car can leave you willing to take a risk that could end up costing you the earth! Take a look at our simple advice and buy the car of your dreams with confidence.
Where to Buy Your Classic Car
With so many online marketplaces trying to encourage you in, it can be challenging to work out where to look when you are ready to buy a classic car. The best way to tackle this is to join an owner’s club to access the advice of others that have been through the process and start working out what you want in your new vehicle.
Armed with your list of must-haves, you can then start to look around for potentially suitable cars. When you find one, avoid going straight for a deal and instead ask all about the car before you even arrange a viewing. If you are new to the classic car world, then taking an experienced friend or even paying a classic car expert to come and check the car out with you will help you make an informed decision.
Consider All the Costs
Owning a classic car is a totally different ballgame from owning a more modern car, and you need to be prepared for all the potential expenses that you will need to cover. Firstly, getting insurance for a classic car can be time-consuming and getting an insurance company to agree on the right status for your insurance is essential. The good news is that the cost of classic car insurance does not tend to be high! You will also need to consider the cost of road tax if your vehicle was registered after 1973.
One area that will cost you more is servicing, as the older a car is, the more it needs regular servicing to keep it running. The good news is that the majority of classic cars offer simple engineering, and you can learn how to do lots of the jobs yourself once you’ve been guided by someone with more experience.
Finally, you will need to properly consider the ongoing running costs of a classic car as there will be the cost of repairs, parts, and fuel to be factored in if you really want to get the most from your investment.
Inspecting the Car
A test drive is not going to be enough when you are looking at classic cars, and it is vital that when you go to inspect a car that you have someone that understands them with you. The great thing about the owner’s club that you will have joined is that many of the members will have links to classic car experts who can be hired to do the inspection with you.
Inspecting the car involves listening to the car for any concerning noises, checking out the way the car works and discovering any specific faults that may make it a purchase to be avoided. Plus, having someone independent with you will allow you to get a balanced view of what can and can’t be rectified – especially when it comes to issues such as rust, as sourcing spare parts can be virtually impossible for a classic car!
Check the History and Paperwork
When it comes to sealing the deal, it is essential that you find out as much as possible about the history of the car, including the owners it has had, and past problems or faults that occurred and the service history. Sadly, some sellers will be keen to say what you want to hear to secure the sale, and so it may be worth adding extra checks to be certain of the information you’ve been given.
One simple way to do this is to invest in a vehicle check from a reputable online service like Instantregcheck. You’ll get information about whether it’s ever been written off, scrapped or stolen or if there is outstanding finance on the car, as well as a huge range of other information that will give you the peace of mind and confidence you are looking for.
With everything in place, you may be ready to make your classic car purchase, but before you can splash the cash, you will need to have a suitable storage place to keep your new car. The reality of a classic car is that damp conditions can cause rust to spread and corrosion to occur around the electrics. Sadly, if you do not have dry storage space for your new hobby, then it may be worth delaying your purchase until you can get one.
The good news is that there are many great garages available for rent up and down the country, and they range hugely in price depending on the facilities you are looking for – you can find them online or even by contacting your local authority.
However, make sure you understand the restrictions before signing a contract, as many places won’t let you work on your car in their rented garages. If all else fails and you can‘t resist the purchase, then there are also waterproof covers and rigid air chambers that will provide a practical solution too so that you can enjoy your new hobby from the comfort of your own driveway.