Post-Irene, Take Extra Steps When Buying A Used Car

The Insurance Information Institute states the East Coast suffered tremendous property loss because of Hurricane Irene, but many cars that experienced extensive flood damage will be sold to consumers without a hint of the vehicle's history.

Although the National Insurance Crime Bureau helps law enforcement groups track flood-damaged vehicles, car dealers continue to sell affected cars to unsuspecting buyers.

"Unscrupulous salvage operators and dealers often try to conceal the fact that the vehicles they are selling have been damaged by a natural disaster," Jeanne M. Salvatore, senior vice president and consumer spokesperson for the III, said. "It is not illegal to sell or buy a flood-damaged car, however, it is against the law to sell a water-damaged car without letting the buyer know that the car had been damaged by a flood."

Salvatore goes on to say that it is the responsibility of the buyer not to get duped by a car owner. Before purchasing a car from a dealership, find out if their Better Business Bureau rating suffices and bring with you a certified mechanic to inspect the vehicle you'd like to buy.

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