Odometer fraud occurs when a person tampers with the odometer of a vehicle to make it inaccurately reflect the true mileage of the vehicle. This type of fraud is used to make used cars more attractive to buyers and to artificially inflate their value so that they can be sold at a higher price. Unfortunately, unsuspecting buyers may be burdened with significant costs if they purchase a vehicle with an inaccurate odometer.
The Costs of Odometer Fraud
In many cases, victims of odometer fraud end up shouldering many unfair burdens, including:
- Extra cost of the car: Buyers pay more for a car with a tampered odometer than the car is worth.
- Additional insurance costs: Low mileage cars often have more expensive insurance, which the owner will have to pay even though the car may have many more miles than what the odometer reads.
- Additional maintenance: A vehicle that has been tampered with may need more maintenance and therefore may require more costly repairs.
- Vehicle safety: Tampering with an odometer puts additional stress on the engine and suspension that can make the vehicle unsafe to drive.
When purchasing a used car, always obtain a vehicle history report and verify that the mileage listed on the report matches the current mileage on the car. Also make sure that the mileage listed for one report date is not lower than mileage listed on previous report dates. You can also verify the mileage with the previous owner to ensure that the odometer has not been rolled back. These steps can help to prevent you from becoming a victim of costly odometer fraud.
If you purchase a vehicle with an inaccurate odometer, you may end up paying much more for insurance than is necessary. Taking steps to verify the mileage listed on the car now could save you much grief later on.
To learn more about car insurance options and how you can protect your vehicle from damages, don’t hesitate to contact the Chicago car insurance experts of Insure on the Spot today at 773-202-5060.