When selling your car, whether privately, part exchanging, to an online car dealer, at auction or elsewhere, it’s vitally important to make sure the paperwork that is required is dealt with fully. This protects you and your buyer, and fulfils your legal obligations.
These are the main documents and paperwork you need attend to.
The V5C certificate is the document you’ll have received when you bought the car and shows you as the registered keeper of the vehicle.
It’s very important to follow the right procedures with the V5C when you sell your car or you could still be liable for it. Even if selling to a motor trader – including part exchange – it’s ultimately your responsibility to ensure the correct procedures are followed with the V5C.
It basically consists of making sure you complete and return the correct part of the V5C certificate to DVLA and that you give your buyer the appropriate portion of the form.
For example, failing to properly notify DVLA that you’re no longer the owner of the car could make you liable for parking or speeding fines incurred by the new owner.
What If I Don’t Have The V5C For My Car?
You’ll have to notify the DVLA in writing with full vehicle details and the name and address of the new keeper (your buyer). Ensure they apply for a new registration document, though DVLA.
It’s highly advisable to provide a sales agreement for you and your buyer if selling privately. Ideally, create one in your computer’s word processor and print off two copies – one for you and one for your buyer.
In this document include the following:
- Car description (make/model)
- Registration number
- Year of registration
- VIN number
- Sale price
- Mileage (if you are not 100% certain its genuine mileage – perhaps you bought the car used initially – then put ‘mileage not verified.)
- Your name and address
- Your buyer’s name and address
- Date of the sale
- Sale price
- A note that the car is ‘sold as seen’
Make sure you and your buyer sign and date BOTH copies. A lot of the above points also play an important part in determining the actual value of the car, we have a page providing you with useful information in factors effecting the price of your car.
Online magazines such as ‘What Car?’ have a template you can use if you wish.
Invoices, Service History, MOT Certificates and Other Documentation
Service History – if you’ve sold the car with the promise of a full or part service history, then ensure all the related paperwork is given to your buyer. Supply invoices from the servicing garage and, most importantly, the service book containing the dealer stamps showing when and where the car was serviced.
Other Receipts – Perhaps proof of purchase paperwork showing recent expense such as, say, a set of recently fitted tyres (especially if this was something mentioned in your advertisement).
MOT Certificates – if the car has had one or more MOT tests, then all the certificates should be given to the new owner.
Owner’s Manuals – along with the service record book, any manuals originally supplied with the car including other equipment (stereo, navigation equipment and so on) should be included. Don’t forget items like radio codes.
Warranty Information – if the car is still under warranty, then any relevant booklets and documentation should be given to your buyer.
Vehicle Road Tax
The rules have changed regarding vehicle tax and being able to pass on unexpired amounts to a new owner.
Since the abolition of the tax disc in October 2014, if you sell a car the new owner can no longer benefit from any remaining tax. Instead, the DVLA will refund you for any remaining and your buyer will need to tax the car themselves.
This is another reason why it’s vital to complete the V5C paperwork properly. The DVLA can then update their records and refund you – if you don’t inform them, a heavy fine can result.
In preparing the car documents for sale, it’s very important to be organised. Spend some time gathering up all the paperwork that is required, preferably before you embark on selling your car, just to ensure everything is to hand.