How to sell your car in Washington

When you’re selling a car, it’s always better to do it yourself—because you’ll get a lot more money than trading or selling it to a dealer.

It can be a little hard to know where to start, and laws are different in each state, so we’ve created this guide to make it easy to understand what you need to do if you’re selling a car in Washington.

Here’s what you need:

  • The title – also known as the “pink slip.” It’s the certificate that proves you own the car.
  • A Washington bill of sale – You can use Form TD-420-065, which you can download from the DOL’s website, here.
  • The odometer reading – (exactly how many miles are on the car)
  • Keep the license plates – Remember that the plates stay with you, not the car.

After you complete the sale, you need to report it within 5 days to the DOL, either online using your License eXpress account, or the online form. Or, you can do it at any vehicle licensing office.

Other things to consider

You’ll want to be extra careful when you’re filling out the title—or any other DOL-issued documents—because any errors or scratch-outs will mean you have to fill out a lot of additional paperwork.

Also keep in mind that the title—even though it’s just a piece of paper—is extremely important. If it’s stolen, someone could sign ownership of your car over to themselves or someone else. It’s a good idea to keep it in a safe place—not with you or in the car—until you’re absolutely ready to sign ownership of the car over to your buyer.

If you and the seller don’t go to the DOL together, take pictures of the signed title and bill of sale, so that you have a record of the sale. It’s also a good idea to print the confirmation that you reported the sale, if you do it online.

Getting ready to sell your car

Aside from the documentation and transfer process required by the state, there are some other things that can be helpful to consider when you’re preparing to sell your car—things that can help you be more informed and sell your car more quickly.

One of the first things to consider when you decide to list your car for sale is how much to ask for it. This guide covers some of the important factors you’ll want to consider for pricing, as well as some things you can do to make your car most appealing to buyers.

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