Estimated Time to Read: 2 minutes

With the change of the car industry and their now twice a year release of a new registrations, this means that cars are not looked upon as being new for quite as long any more. For instance, somebody could buy a brand new car in August and when the new registration is released in September it is no longer ‘new’, even though it is only a month old.

The cost conscious car buyer has now got even savvier and is opting to have personalised plates put onto a new set of wheels. The reason for this is that most people are not be able to tell which year the car was registered and hey presto, problem solved. The car buyer can push the car salesman to get a good deal prior to the new registration release and can also sidestep the fact that the car is not considered brand new.

However, if you think that it’s going to be as easy as just approaching a private plate company and asking for your surname and year of birth you’d be mistaken. Private plates have been out for years and are becoming ever more popular as more and more celebrities and high profile business people are being snapped getting out of cars with personalised plates.

A good tip is to make sure the company you use has a vast database of plates available. This will then allow you to try for variations of your preferred plate. Another thing to keep in mind is the budget for your private plates. The more bespoke, the more expensive. Some plates can exceed the price of a celebrity’s home. Below is a list of the top three most expensive plates ever sold.

F1 – this sold for £440,000

5 – this sold for £3.5 million

1 – this sold for, wait for it, £7 million

Now if you have these sorts of funds available, you won’t really be worried about getting a good deal on your car by buying it before a new plate is released. However, for the more money conscious it is always best to set a limit and search for relevant plates within this.

The great thing about a private plate it makes your car stand out from the rest. Of course you can add your own car mats and air freshener, but there is nothing quite like a private plate to make sitting at the lights in traffic a more pleasant experience. One final tip – make sure your plate reads well, unlike the gentleman who purchased the registration plate PEN 15.

Danny Graham is writing on behalf of about Private Number Plates