Transferring the title of a vehicle you've recently purchased is an important step in acquiring a vehicle that you can legally drive. As the buyer, there are some things it's important for you to do to make sure you protect your investment in your new vehicle and cover any legal liabilities you have as the new driver.
The following are four mistakes to avoid to be sure you get the title for your new vehicle transferred to your name without any unpleasant complications.
Buying the vehicle without an official bill of sale
A written bill of sale for your automobile purchase is important for showing details of the transaction including the date and the sale amount. This document can come in handy when you transfer the title and is in some states even a required document in the title transfer process.
Being unaware of existing liens on the title
It's important to discuss the title status with the seller of the vehicle in question before you buy it. If there is a lien on the title, that will mean that a lender has an ownership right to equity in the vehicle.
The vehicle could be repossessed if there is an actionable lien on the title and you don't continue making payments on the related vehicle loan after purchasing the vehicle.
After a vehicle loan is paid off, title liens should be removed from the title during a title transfer. Make sure you have a clean or lien-free title on the vehicle you're purchasing so that no individual or institution can challenge that you own the vehicle free and clear.
Neglecting to make sure that the VIN is recorded correctly
The VIN number of a vehicle is an important way to identify the vehicle for your state DMV. You are probably going to have problems registering and insuring your vehicle if your title doesn't give the correct VIN.
The VIN for your vehicle should be on your vehicle's windshield. Make sure you match up the VIN on your vehicle with the VIN on your title to ensure accuracy.
Not checking the odometer for the mileage
The mileage of a vehicle is often used as an indicator of the vehicle's overall condition. Higher mileage vehicles are assumed to have experienced more wear and tear than lower mileage vehicles. A vehicle's mileage is recorded using the vehicle's odometer.
When a vehicle's title is transferred, that vehicle's mileage is typically recorded on the title. It's important to match up your vehicle's mileage between your odometer and your title. An accurate odometer reading ensures that you will be certain down the road of how many miles you have put on your vehicle while you owned it.
For more information, contact a company that handles car title transfer in your area.