How to Transfer a Car Title

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What is a Car Title?

Your car’s title is an important part of owning your vehicle. It is a document that proves you are the legal owner of the vehicle! When selling, buying, or using your vehicle for a loan, you must have a certificate of title on hand. If you are unsure about how to transfer a car title, the process can be fairly simple. However, it can vary depending on what kind of transfer you are doing and on the state that you currently live in

All title issues and transfers, for a new title or a duplicate title, will take place at your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). It may be called something else in your state, such as the Bureau of Motor Vehicles or the Motor Vehicles Division.

How to Transfer a Car Title When Selling or Buying Your Vehicle 

When selling or buying a vehicle as a private party, there will have to be a title transfer involved. The seller will have to release their ownership of the car by signing the title. The buyer then takes the signed title to the DMV office (or state equivalent). The state issues a new registration and title to the rightful owner of the vehicle. This will usually cost a small or large fee.

Depending on the state you live in, you must have a few documents with you. Here are a few examples of the required documents to complete a title transfer:

  • Completed Vehicle Title Application Form, Signed and Notarized
  • The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN)
  • Proof of Car Insurance Coverage (In some cases)
  • An Existing Title (if Applicable)
  • Insurance Company/Policy Documents with Name and Date
  • All Vehicle Documents from Seller, Including the Bill of Sale
  • The Odometer Reading
  • Vehicle Registration 
  • Driver’s License or Government-Issued State ID
  • Required Title Transfer Fees. Additional Fee for Instant Title Transfer (In Applicable States)

What Happens to Your Car Title When a Dealership is Involved?

When selling a vehicle to a dealership, you will have to provide them with the necessary documents, and they can do the rest. 

When buying a car from a dealership, the dealer will typically handle the paperwork for you. You will receive the vehicle title from your state’s DMV (or state equivalent) in the mail if you purchased it outright and did not finance the vehicle.

How to Transfer Your Car Title for An Auto Title Loan 

A car title loan is a type of secured loan where a borrower uses a vehicle title as collateral in order to guarantee the loan. Car title loans can typically cater to borrowers with subprime credit because they are secured.

When a title loan is funded, the lender will add a lien to the vehicle title. A lender can only do this if the title is in the borrower’s name. You cannot borrow against an asset that isn’t yours!

When the loan is paid back in full, the lender will provide you with a lien release. You can attach it to your paper title, or the lender will send a lien release electronically. Once that is done, you can head to your local DMV to get a new title. If the lien is released electronically, the DMV in your state will typically send you the vehicle title in the mail.

What if There is Still a Loan on the Car? 

As previously mentioned, in order to sell your vehicle or use it for a title loan, your name needs to be on the title in order to provide proof of ownership. Additionally, if there is a loan on your car, there are a few things to keep in mind before you can sell your vehicle or use it for a loan:

  • If there is a different name on the car’s title, the title must be transferred from the previous owner to you before you can sell it or use it as collateral for a title loan.
  • If, however, there’s also a bank or another financial institution’s name on the title (referred to as a “lienholder”), this means you currently have an auto loan or a title loan. It must be settled before you can sell or use your car as collateral for a title loan. If you currently have a title loan, you may refinance your loan with a new lender if the loan is in good standing.5
  • If you are still financing your vehicle, you can still apply for a title loan. However, you must complete a payoff authorization form so that your new title loan lender can pay off your existing title lender.5
happy couple with car title loan money

Why Work with Max Cash® Title Loans for a Loan? 

If you are ready to apply for a car title loan, start with experts at Max Cash Title Loans. At Max Cash Title Loans, we make it easy to connect with auto title loan lenders all across the country.5

Instead of being a lender ourselves, we connect qualified people with lenders.5 And because of the way that we operate, we can offer you all kinds of unique benefits. Here are a few:

  • Bad Credit Is Typically Not an Issue: Even if you aren’t confident with your credit score, you can apply for a title loan online!5
  • A 3-Step Simple Application Process: From beginning to end, the entire process involves just a few simple steps. We do all of the hard work for you!
  • Keep Driving Your Car: You can keep driving your car throughout the repayment process. Don’t skip a payment, however!

To learn more about Max Cash Title Loans, the process, and the lenders that we work with, check out our FAQ page. To get started, simply head to our website! You can apply for an online car title loan online, or give us a call at (855) 561-5626. Once approved for a title loan, the funds can be made available in as little as 24 hours.1 2 5