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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I've helped people as a professional advocate, working as the buyer's agent, in my individual search for a high quality, low mileage vehicle. Over 32 years of searching, and personally helping, or helping my staff service in excess of 30,000 customers, I've been actively involved in finding really exceptional used cars across the country. In fact, I've dealt with customers and dealers in almost all 50 states including Hawaii and Alaska.

So when I make the point that Carfax alone -- or even in combination with AutoCheck -- may not tell you everything you need to know before buying a used vehicle.

Regarding Carfax, I will use a total of 4 different VIN history reporting services. On occasions, I come across what appears to be an excellent find, but then find any one of the 4 History search options contradicting the other 3. Now, this scenario is infrequent. But it is my goal is to eliminate all possible risks for my used car customers.

Is the use of 4 different VIN history search options extreme? Please watch this CBS affiliate report I assisted with, participated in, to see how flood damaged cars out of Texas were shown to be "clean" after using all 4 reporting services:

I never stop with VIN history reports. If a vehicle appears to be good after running these reports, I still recommend that the customer have a given vehicle inspected by a qualified 3rd party shop technician. Normally, this is the final stage of an exhaustive process I use when looking for a superior car before committing to it.

THE BAD NEWS FOR ME: I was recently stung. I took every precaution I normally use, but every precaution did not help me in the purchase of a compromised 2001 Insight MT. The engine is now obviously going to need to be replaced or repaired. There is no third option in the short or long haul.

AS AN INSIGHT AFICIONADO, WHO HAS OWNED 4 DIFFERENT INSIGHTS OVER 15 YEARS (+/-) I would had done well to have done more than I did.

What did I not do that every Insight buyer should do? Please let me recommend that you read the recent post by Mountain driver, which is titled "G1 Buyers Tips." Had I seen and seriously contemplated the advice offered here, I might have avoided what is now obviously a very bad decision.
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