If you plan to sell your car privately or to a dealership, you’ll need to complete a form of transfer of ownership, like a bill of sale. It’s a formal document that details in writing the transfer of property from one party to the other. Bills of sale are used to document transactions of vehicles, motorcycles, and boats. However, they can be used to record any other proceeding. A bill of sale includes identifying information, such as facts about the buyer and seller, the conditions attached to the sale, the date of transfer, and, last but certainly not least, the car’s purchase price. It’s like a detailed receipt.
Microsoft Word has a bill of sale template. It’s available with all the basic information. The Word format is the best choice in terms of editing and making changes. Nonetheless, the PDF format is preferable when it comes to viewing and sharing documents. Using a PDF template makes creating and using a bill of sale seamless. There are a number of useful services that offer premade PDF templates. PDFChef is primarily a PDF editor for Windows and Mac, but it also offers various fillable templates, which you can find on the website. You can add your own details and use the bill of sale form for your own needs.
A bill of sale template will help you enormously during the sales process. If you’re still not convinced, maybe this will change your mind.
Reasons To Use a Bill of Sale in A Private Transaction
You Avoid Legal Risks When Selling Your Car
A signed bill of sale acts as legal proof of the agreement. It's a legally binding document that provides evidence of the sale of your vehicle. Put simply, it shows that the transaction took place (you transferred your rights to the asset described in the bill of sale). In the absence of a bill of sale, parking and speeding tickets can become the responsibility of the previous owner. There's a difference between a sale contract and a bill of sale. More exactly, a sales agreement is used for more complex and detailed transactions.
The Registration Process Is Easier
When it comes to buying a vehicle from a private seller or receiving a vehicle as a gift, it's necessary to have the signed-off title to register the car and transfer ownership. A bill of sale alone is unacceptable. Maybe so, but it streamlines the registration process. It contains detailed information, such as:
- Car details: year, make, model, and color
- VIN: Every car receives a unique code when it's manufactured. The VIN reveals its model year, the country of origin, the serial number, etc.
- Odometer reading: The car's odometer indicates the number of miles it has traveled. It shows the value of the car because it shows how far it has been driven.
- Payment details: By this, it's understood the sale price and the payment terms (clear details about the expected payment on the sake). If you said yes to installments, make that clear.
- Terms & Conditions: Terms and conditions translate into the general terms and conditions for the sale of products and services. The vehicle is sold as - in other words, it's not necessary to make guarantees about the condition or any other form of warranty.
- Buyer and seller information: This includes the names, addresses, and phone numbers of both parties on the bill of sale.
- Signatures: A completed bill of sale includes the signatures of the buyer and seller. This protects everyone should there be disagreements in the future. Signatures can ve by hand or electronically.
It Helps You Make Smart Decisions
Selling a car can turn out to be a lengthy process. You may find a buyer quite easily, but the process of transferring the vehicle's ownership isn't so simple. Depending on the type of transaction, the bill of sale can be simple or complex. In the sake of a car, the bill of sale is the transfer of the actual rights to ownership. In exchange for the bill of sale, the purchaser can apply for a title in their name at the DMV. Finalizing the change of the car's ownership by means of a private deal is legitimate in the United States, so you won't have any legal headaches.
You Can Establish the Value of The Car in The Case of a Legal Dispute
When expensive or important items - such as a car - are bought and sold, it's crucial to create a bill of sale. It codifies the chain of its ownership in writing. To be more precise, ownership can be proven in court. A notary doesn't have to be present at the singing of the bill of sale. Conflicts exist between ownership transfer provisions, but they can be avoided if parties that attempt to transfer ownership comply with the statutes. As the seller, you're responsible for drafting the bill of sale and making sure the agreement is fair. It's a legally binding document, so comply with your state's requirements. In some states, for instance, only the buyer is required to sign the bill of sale.
Can A Bill of Sale Be Handwritten?
It's common to present the bill of sale in digital format. Nevertheless, it can be handwritten as long as it contains the information listed above. Include all the crucial details in the bill of sale to protect yourself and the other party. Typing the bill of sale is preferred because it avoids forcing the purchaser (or the judge) to interpret your handwriting. If using a notary, use a third party and not someone who is a family member or a close friend. Using a templated agreement is the best thing you can do. The negotiation process will proceed more quickly, not to mention that less human intervention is necessary.
One of the most noticeable differences between a handwritten and a digital bill of sale is improved risk management. There are no human errors due to manual data entry. What is more, the risk of manipulative actors is reduced significantly. Finally yet importantly, a bill of sale in PDF format is highly secure. The original agreement is kept in its original condition. Keep several copies of the document.