Wanting to let Ottawa know you have a used vehicle for sale? Here are 10 important things to do before selling a used car in Ontario.
1. Get A Used Vehicle Information Package
Ontario law requires that you provide a specific package of facts before selling used vehicles, called the Used Vehicle Information Package (uVIP), to the buyer of your secondhand car. You can order the uVIP package online, at the cost of $20, and covers topics such as:
- a detailed description of the vehicle (include year, make and model)
- registration history
- any outstanding liens on the vehicle
- wholesale value (average)
- information on tax requirements (typically, the buyer will have to pay sales tax of 13 percent on a used vehicle)
- vehicle condition (i.e. whether it has passed a safety check and received a safety standards certificate)
2. Get A Bill Of Sale
You’ll need a bill of sale — because the buyer will need to register the vehicle within 6 days of purchase — and the bill of sale confirms that they are the new owner of the vehicle. Fortunately, the uVIP package to the buyer includes a bill of sale for you. Here’s what it must list:
- vehicle identification number
- make, model, year
- colour and body type
- type of engine (powered by gasoline, electricity, or hybrid)
- vehicle’s condition
- odometer reading
- Ontario vehicle registration history
- any current liens
- date of sale/purchase
- purchase price
If, for some reason, you prefer to create your own bill of sale, a printed or handwritten document will be fine, as long as it contains all the relevant facts. Every bill of sale must be signed and dated by both the buyer and seller.
3. Prepare Vehicle Service History
To prepare a vehicle history, get together your service records, which indicate all services you’ve had done on your car. These include oil and filter changes, alignment checks, other car maintenance, and auto repair. In addition, these will indicate the odometer readings at the time of service. Be prepared to explain any gaps in service — for example, if you were out of the country for an extended period.
4. Prepare For Transfer of Ownership
To sell your car, locate the Application for Transfer form, also known as the registration permit, which is on the back of your ownership permit, below the vehicle portion. Then, complete and sign the application.
5. Let the Buyer Take it for a Spin
Buying a new vehicle is about transportation and comfort. Allow potential buyers to take your car for a test drive to get a feel for how it handles. Asking price aside, this is one of the important steps to sell a used vehicle.
6. Is There Money Owed On Your Vehicle?
Make sure that you pay off any remaining balance you still owe prior to the vehicle sale so that there are no outstanding liens. Then, get written proof from the lender that the money has been paid and the lien has been removed. That way, you’ll be in the clear, and the buyer will not face a problem registering the car in Ontario.
7. What Items Do You Keep?
You keep your old car licence plates; the buyer will receive new ones with a unique number. Also, hold onto the plate portion of your ownership permit. This will be necessary when you want to either register your existing license plates to a different vehicle you’ve bought or claim a refund for the unused months on your plate stickers (applies to complete months only).
8. Emissions Test
If you’re selling a heavy diesel commercial vehicle that weighs over 4,500 kilograms, you’ll need to undergo an emissions test before you can sell it.
9. Get Car Detailing
Before selling your car, have complete car detailing done. It’ll send a positive message — A) that this is one great-looking car with an appearance nearly as good as new (but at a lower price point) and; B) you, the seller, care about keeping it in great condition. All this makes the pre-owned vehicle seem a lot more appealing than other used cars on the market … and the secret of successful selling is standing out from the crowd.
10. Schedule An Inspection
Another essential is a safety inspection by an auto repair shop licensed as a Motor Vehicle Inspection Station by the Ontario Ministry of Transportation — like Bemac. (An official safety check is required whenever someone sells a car privately in this province, in order to provide the buyer with a vehicle Safety Standards certificate to register the purchase at a ServiceOntario center.)
Bemac will inspect your vehicle thoroughly to ensure it’s good to go. If we find that certain repairs need to be done before your car will be able to pass the safety inspection, we’ll be happy to look after those for you.