Tools you need: Second-hand car registration check

tools-you-need:-second-hand-car-registration-check

James Ward

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On a scale of one-to-ten, how nervous are you when buying a second-hand car?

While most sellers are honest and open, you never want to be the person caught out by that one unscrupulous ‘too good to be true’ deal. So how can you protect yourself?

One of the best ways to double-check the information about a car being advertised is to run the registration plate through one of the state-based governing bodies. These online tools allow you to immediately verify that the car is what it says it is, when the registration is (or has) expires and in some cases disclose the full VIN details so you can use other online tools to further check information on the car.



Here’s what to expect in each state:

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Australian Capital Territory

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ACT Registration Check Details
WebsiteAccess Canberra – Check Registration Details
Car informationYear / Make / Model / Colour / Build date
Registration informationStatus and expiry
VIN or engine numberLast four digits
Insurance informationStatus and insurer
Theft informationStolen car / plate / engine flags
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NSW Registration Check Details
WebsiteService NSW – Check Vehicle Registration
Car informationYear / Make / Model / Colour / Body style
Registration informationStatus and expiry
VIN or engine numberLast four digits
Insurance informationStatus and insurer
Theft informationReport available to purchase – $22
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NT Registration Check Details
WebsiteNT.GOV.AU – Check your vehicle registration
Car informationYear / Make / Model / Colour
Registration informationStatus and expiry
VIN or engine numberNone
Insurance informationNone
Theft informationNone
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QLD Registration Check Details
WebsiteQueensland Government – Check Registration Status
Car informationYear / Make / Model / Body style
Registration informationStatus and expiry
VIN or engine numberFull VIN details
Insurance informationNone
Theft informationNone
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SA Registration Check Details
WebsiteEzyReg – Check Registration
Car informationMake / Model / Colour
Registration informationExpiry
VIN or engine numberLast four digits
Insurance informationInsurer
Theft informationNone
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TAS Registration Check Details
WebsiteTransport TAS – Rego Check
Car informationYear / Make / Model / Colour
Registration informationStatus and expiry
VIN or engine numberComplete Engine number
Insurance informationNone
Theft informationStolen car / write-off flags
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VIC Registration Check Details
WebsiteVicRoads – Registration Check
Car informationYear / Make / Colour / Body style
Registration informationStatus and expiry
VIN or engine numberComplete engine number and VIN
Insurance informationNone
Theft informationSanctions flag
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WA Registration Check Details
WebsiteDepartment of Transport – Vehicle Licence Expiry
Car informationYear / Make / Model / Colour / Body style
Registration informationExpiry
VIN or engine numberNone
Insurance informationNone
Theft informationNone


James Ward

James has been part of the digital publishing landscape in Australia since 2002 and has worked within the automotive industry since 2007. He joined CarAdvice in 2013, left in 2017 to work with BMW and then returned at the end of 2019 to spearhead the content direction of Drive.

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