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How To Sell A Car in Alabama – Knowing Guidelines

How To Sell A Car in Alabama- Knowing Guidelines

Are you seeking information on how to sell a car in Alabama? Are you uncertain of what paperwork needs to be filled out? Do you feel overwhelmed with all that needs to be done?

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If you’ve been searching for how to sell a car in Alabama privately, we can help!

Check out or complete guide that will help you stay organized with all paperwork and details for a successful sale of your Alabama car!

Learning how to sell a car in Alabama privately will differ for just about everyone, but it helps to know what to do and what forms to complete.

From getting a duplicate car title to taking care of all guidelines, we will help you answer how to sell a car in Alabama the correct and efficient way!

Got a particular question about your car title? The Alabama Department of Revenue can help!

Understanding the Importance of a Valid Car Title in Alabama

Here in Alabama, a car’s title is of the utmost importance for every car owner. This document shows ownership of the vehicle.

So, if you don’t have the car title, then you are not the owner. Such may be the case for individuals who lease a car. You also may not have the car title because you still owe on the car.  You may have taken but a loan on the car from a bank or a credit union, for example.  In cases such as a bank loan, you would have a title certificate; because of this, you would not be able to transfer the title.

Once you decide to transfer ownership of your car, the title must be signed over to the other person or the new buyer.

Steps Needed for a Successful Vehicle Transfer in Alabama

When it comes to transferring a car title here in Alabama, there are not a lot of steps to follow, but each step is important, ensuring a successful title transfer. Check out what’s required below!

  1. According to Alabama law, the vehicle seller must physically sign the title over to the new owner. If you are giving the car as a gift, then you are still considered the car seller. There are mandated fields that must be completed on the back of the title. Take your time in completing them all. A title transfer that is not complete and done correctly can of course set you back in your car selling process.
  2. After the car title has been signed over to the new owner, you as the seller need to fill out a bill of sale. Here in Alabama for vehicles that are 35 years old, there is no title that is needed, but a bill of sale is still mandatory. That bill of sale must be used to register the vehicle in the new owner’s name. It’s important to note that all counties in Alabama have their own requirements for how a bill of sale must be structured. So, be sure to check with your particular county’s requirements.
  3. After such, you will need to give both the signed over title and the bill of sale to your county licensing office. A $15 title application fee is required as payment and then you must pay a $1.50 processing fee as well.
  4. Need a duplicate car title for the sale of a car? Click here for quick access to the application you need to fill out. There is a $15 application fee for a duplicate car title.

Does a Bill of Sale Have to be Notarized?

Does a Bill of Sale Have to be Notarized?

In Alabama, a bill of sale is not always required by the Department of Revenue (DOR) for vehicles.

But it is important when you are selling a vehicle with no car title. While it is wise to have a bill of sale for vehicles with both a car title as well as ones without, a bill of sale must be notarized or have two witnesses to requisite signatures.

While many places have an official bill of sale there is no general or official form for Alabama. But your title must be “Bill of Sale” on it.

Lots of counties in Alabama have their own bill of sale forms. You can even create or draft your own! But before you do that, it is important that the bill of sale meet your particular county’s requirements when doing so. For example, Baldwin County, which is Alabama’s largest county, provides their own bill of sale on their website. Click here to create a bill of sale or see how to draft one on your own!

How To Sell a Car in Alabama Privately- On My Own

How To Sell a Car in Alabama Privately- On My Own

If you think that selling your car privately on your own is a viable option, it very well may be. Lots of people sell cars on their own. But with such comes a bit of work.

The first thing you want to consider is posting “for sale” signs on the car. Next, you need to place the vehicle in an area that is visible to lots of drives. For example, if laws permit you to park your car on your street for an extended period of time, you may wish to do so.

Lots of people will place a car they wish to sell on a field or in another area of town, that sees lots of traffic. So, when people drive by, they will see your car for sale and hopefully have time to jot down your information.

Once you get a potential buyer, you want to remain as positive and polite with the buyer as you can. You have to keep in mind that they want to know all about your vehicle and want to spend time thinking about making this important purchase.

You also want to be honest with the potential buyer. For example, if you have some issues with the starter, then let the potential buyer know. If there is some hail or other damage to the car, you want to let the potential buyer know.

Sometimes telling a potential buyer all of the “wrongs” with your car does not mean you won’t sell it. Lots of folks will buy blemished cars and either repair them themselves, or take them somewhere to get them fixed. For many car buyers, fixing up cars is their hobby. So, just be upfront with any issues or problems with the car.

What about a test drive?

If you feel comfortable taking your potential buyer on a test drive, then by all means, go on a test drive. Lots of potential buyers want to see how the car feels, especially if you pointed out something that may prevent a smooth ride. You may even ask a family member or a friend to join you and the potential buyer on the test drive. Having another person along on the test drive can help in a number of ways.

Simple Ways to Prepare You Car for a Sale

Once you prepare and complete all documentation for your car sale, it’s important that your car look its best for its sale. Check out a few simple tasks that really make a difference when selling a car.

  1. Car Wash. Be sure to keep your used car washed. You may even want to spend a few extra dollars to take it to a car and detail shop. Who wants to buy a dirty car? Even if it rains, keep your car spotless. Don’t forget to vacuum the inside carpets and mats. And make sure that you remove all trash from the back-seat pockets, under the car seats, the glove compartment and the trunk.
  2. Mechanical Fixes. If your used car could use a tire rotation, or even some new tires then perhaps you need to spring for that. In fact, completing those tasks could be selling features. Selling a car with brand-new tires is quite cool! Make sure that the oil change is current. Top off all fluids and be sure to check all hoses too.
  3. Removal of License Plates. Don’t forget to remove your car’s license plates. You will want to put them somewhere safe and secure.

Your car should now be ready for the sale!

A Few Selling Tips

Check out a few tips that are helpful in dealing with potential buyers.

  1. If you are firm on the price of your car, indicate such. Don’t be low-balled, bullied or threatened by anyone. If you are, end communication.
  2. Try to be as pleasant as possible. It can get quite hard to do this after the 15th person has expressed interest in the car. You will find that you answer the same questions. So, you may even want to put together some flyers about your car, that go over some basics about your car. This will prevent you from sounding like a “broken record”.
  3. If you have someone who is interested in the car and they don’t have all of their monies together, take that into consideration. If you want to wait for them, that is your choice. But if you want to move on to another buyer, who is ready to buy your car, consider such for a quick sale of your car.


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