Stoneacre dealer front

Know your dealer – being vigilant when car buying


Like any big purchase in life, people want to feel secure when buying a car – trust is such a key factor for all throughout the whole journey, from test drive to taking your new car home.

At Stoneacre, we pride ourselves in being able to offer such a service when our customers come to us for a new vehicle.

However, sometimes elsewhere, that isn’t always the case…

Trading Standards are currently tracking down fraudulent online car retailers who have been asking for upfront payment in full to secure a next day delivery of cars that never show.

One example is a firm trading under CAR MARKET (HEREFORD) LTD. This bogus firm have been advertising cars on multiple used car websites, with cars typically listed for about half of their value – one example being a customer transferring £6,500 for a car worth up to £12,000, and never receiving the goods.

Unfortunately, stories such as these can be frequent enough to make potential car buyers anxious about dealing with other car dealers.

As such, we’d like to offer a guide of sorts to ease fears and give some pointers as to what can make for a reputable dealer.

Car sales staff

Manufacturer Backed

Apart from a couple of dedicated Used Car dealerships, the Stoneacre network is fully franchised, meaning each dealership has manufacturer backing.

This is a direct sign of a dealer being a secure place to buy from – both the manufacturer and the dealer have reputations to uphold, and pride themselves on serving their customers with the utmost care and due diligence.

Not only that, you have the safety of knowing that if anything were to go wrong, you can rely on two strong parties to help you resolve any issues.

Long Service Record

Here at Stoneacre, we’ve been selling cars for over a quarter-of-a-century, and we’re so incredibly proud to have such a strong history within the industry.

The longevity of our business has also helped us become a leading name and helps give our customers confidence in buying from us in return.

As much as we hate to say it, historically, new businesses will fail within the first 12 months of starting out taking their customers money with them, and is why people will typically feel more secure in purchasing from a company with plenty of experience and strong indication of success.

Insurance Policy

On the rare occasion, the car you buy might not be quite what you after, and it can be important to have options in handing the car back if your needs aren’t being fulfilled.

A key example of this throughout the Stoneacre network is when buying online – with customers having got used to doing business remotely in the last 12-14 months, being able buy and reserve online has been useful to many, but it’s important for us to offer customers those options if the car turns out to be not quite right.

In this occasion, you have 14 days to be able to hand the car back for a full refund if it ends up not being the one for you.

Additionally, our Reserve Cost is fully refundable also.

Cars in showroom

Get Behind the Wheel

To help avoid the above scenario as much as possible, we advise car buyers come into branch to drive the car themselves, helping them get a first-hand feel for the vehicle.

In the case of Car Market, the bogus firm being looked into by Trading Standards, buyers were unable to do this and unfortunately ended up seeing nothing for their money.

Going to see the car in person relieves you of any anxiety of the vehicle’s condition (or if it exists) and, as mentioned, allows you to see if it’s the one for you.


If you ever have any doubts about any part of the car buying journey, you are always welcome to contact us by any means to talk about any queries or concerns.

You can get in touch by contacting your nearest dealership, messaging us on Facebook or talking to our in-house Chat Team via the website.