Canadians underestimate car liens [Video]

Although almost 40 percent of cars for sale have liens, Canadian buyers are often unaware of them

June 20, 2014
by CAR Online Staff

LONDON, Ontario—According to data collected by CarProof, more than one-third of vehicles in Canada have an existing lien, but Canadians are largely unaware of this fact and underestimate how common car liens actually are.

Data compiled and featured in CarProof’s vehicle history reports reveals that 37 percent of vehicles in Canada have a current lien on them. Quite simply, a lien is security for a debt owing. It represents the right of a lender to keep possession of property belonging to another person until a debt owed by that person is paid in full. A lien on a vehicle is similar to a mortgage on a house and would typically be present if a car has been financed by a bank or leased from a finance company.

After determining how common car liens are, CarProof conducted a consumer survey to measure how knowledgeable Canadians are when it comes to car liens. The survey found that 63 percent of respondents underestimated the presence of liens. The findings also show that Canadians do see the value of a lien search before buying a used vehicle—88 percent said it was very important to know whether or not a vehicle has a lien on it.

“These findings illustrate how important a CarProof vehicle history report is when you’re buying a used car,” says Drew Forret, COO/CFO of CarProof. “Our vehicle history reports provide extensive lien, accident and damage information from across Canada, helping to ensure that vehicle shoppers know everything they need to know about a used vehicle before they make a purchase.”

To help educate consumers about the importance of liens – and why the presence of a lien doesn’t necessarily mean that the vehicle isn’t right for you – CarProof has put together a video detailing what a lien is and how to look for one during the vehicle shopping process.