Car Previous Owners
4 minutes

When purchasing a used car, your first concern is to know the vehicle’s background because it provides you with information on its service history, mileage, how and where it was driven, and so on. Although the seller should give you all the information, sometimes they withhold specific facts. One such factor is the detail of previous car owners.

We try to keep things simple at Caranalytics, so here’s our guide to learning more about the previous car owners of any UK vehicle. 

  • Do you know the total number of car owners or drivers for the vehicle?
  • Did you acquire the vehicle from a private seller or a dealer?
  • Did you personally know the prior owner?
  • Since you’ve owned it, how many members of your family have driven the car?
  • Has the car ever been in a collision?

How to find out the number of previous owners?

Searching for a car’s previous owners is generally a straightforward task. Inspect the vehicle registration document (V5C) or get a vehicle check report.

Does a V5 show all previous owners?

One of the simplest ways to check previous car owners is by examining the V5C logbook yourself and confirming it has the current & last owner’s name and addresses mentioned correctly. Also, note essential vehicle details such as make, color, chassis number (last five digits), engine size, etc. and verify they match the vehicle you intend on buying.

What is the reason to check the car’s previous owners from the logbook? The previous owner’s count doesn’t include the current owner. For instance, if you see three previous car owners in the logbook, it means the fourth owner is the current owner, and you’ll be the fifth.

Although it’s proof to trace the car’s previous owner details, I’m not sure the logbook is genuine. The typical scam in the used car market is keeping the older copy of the V5, so do confirm the log is the most recent one. You need to check if the V5C logbook is genuine.

What does our vehicle history check show about the vehicle owner?

Various online services allow you to check the number of previous vehicle owners by entering either car’s registration number or VIN. The details from the car reg check only provide basic information about a vehicle, such as date of registration, vehicle engine size, or tax details, and nothing regarding the car’s previous owner’s details.

Also read: How to find address from car registration number?

Therefore, it is wise to get a premium vehicle check report from a reliable service like Car Analytics® because they directly get vehicle information from DVLA. However, the premium report includes information about the,

  • History of number plate change
  • Numbers of keepers’ history
  • Colour change history
  • Is a car scrapped?
  • Check if the vehicle is imported.
  • How much is my car worth?
  • outstanding finance status
  • Insurance write-off check

It’s natural to wonder why a paid service is necessary if you can simply rely on the V5C logbook for previous owner information. The reality is the seller’s V5C logbook could be old or non-genuine. Always verify the number of previous owners through the previous keeper check. If the numbers don’t match with the V5C, walk away from the deal.

How can I check vehicle details before purchasing it?

Check vehicle details before purchasing. It is crucial to ensure you’re making an informed decision. Here are some ways you can gather information about a vehicle:

  • Vehicle History Report
  • VIN Check
  • Personal Inspection
  • Online Research
  • Vehicle Appraisal Services
  • Title and Ownership Verification
  • Test Drive
  • Trusted Dealerships 

Remember, exercising due diligence and being cautious when purchasing a used vehicle is crucial. Gathering information and inspecting the car will help you make a more informed decision and potentially avoid future problems.

car owner check

I need to find the car owner by vehicle registration number plate because I am involved in a legal battle with them. Can it be done?

No, you cannot utilize any of their “car check” services; thus, you could want to contact the DVLA instead since they have this data.

Reasons to check how many owners the car has had:

Just because a car has a long list of previous owners doesn’t necessarily mean it’s not worth buying. The condition of a vehicle relies on many factors, such as its age, mileage, service history, etc.

  • The majority of buyers in the UK today feel reluctant about buying a car with four or more previous owners. The recommended parameter for previous owners of the vehicle is two or fewer, so you don’t have much trouble in the future if you decide to sell it and make money on the side.
  • In the UK, people will keep their cars for less time than they previously would have. Most of them trade their vehicles after 1-3 years. It makes it difficult for car buyers looking for car finance as the average number of keepers increases. Because purchasing a car with finance is a flexible option now, and the minus for the buyers unwittingly pays for debt cars.

Recommended for you: Know how to avoid paying for a financed car


You can verify the number of previous car owners from the Car Analytics report for just £1.99. To reassure the vehicle that it has no other potential issues like stolen or write-off, you are advised to take a premium check which is less than your pocket money. Find the cheapest data check before buying a vehicle and stay away from high risks.

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