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Would you ever buy a trailer w/out a title?

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  • Would you ever buy a trailer w/out a title?

    The guy "can't find it" and didn't ever put it in his name when he bought it. It is cheap enough that I can pay cash for it, just what I want, seems sound if not pretty. He is supposedly calling the county clerk to see if there is any way to track down the title. I don't think it is stolen, just based on how much stuff is packed into it - or at least, not recently stolen I guess.


    I ran the VIN and didn't get any results on google.

    Thoughts?

  • #2
    Without the title how will you get tags for it and therefore legally take it out on the road?

    The standard suggested "cure" seems to be grinding the VIN off and claiming it's a homemade trailer. I've no idea how difficult that is in practice, or what the penalty for being caught lying about it it.

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      I wouldn't do that. It may be grandfathered in on no tags here in TN (it's a 1997), but I'm not sure about that.

      Comment


      • #4
        lost/damaged/replacement title in wv, va, and ca is in the 10-15$ range; not sure about anywhere else.

        But without the title, they can take your money and say you stole the trailer...

        No title, no sale.

        Now, I did do a salvage title on one of my first motorcycles...
        Nudging "Almost Heaven" a little closer still...
        http://www.wvhorsetrainer.com

        Comment


        • #5
          No. Too much effort to replace/deal with. I also worry if they stole the trailer.


          Old cars (1980) and older I dont worry as much about the title as you can buy them and not only that. Who has a title for a 1952 chevy sitting around. Not many people.
          I am on my phone 90% of the time. Please ignore typos, misplaced lower case letters, and the random word butchered by autocowreck.

          Comment


          • #6
            Here in Florida, it depends on the weight of the trailer whether it needs to be titled. If unsure, you take it to a weigh station, take the weight slip to the tag office. If under a certain weight, just tag, if over, title.
            "I can explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you..."

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by katyb View Post
              I wouldn't do that. It may be grandfathered in on no tags here in TN (it's a 1997), but I'm not sure about that.
              I know here in Alabama if a vehicle is over certain number of years old (I think 10) no title required, as long as you have a bill of sale. I'd call the tag office, they should be able to tell you. Here a tag is required, regardless of age. If the guy has no tag receipts or a bill of sale, I'd walk away.
              Last edited by walknsound; Jul. 31, 2012, 12:21 PM. Reason: Another thought

              Comment


              • #8
                Unless it is a screamin' good deal, I'd pass due to the hassle factor.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I know that in my state a title is not required if it weighs less than a certain amount.

                  My trailer does not have a title, but it does have a certificate of origin stating the VIN and such, which was sufficient for me to get it plated with the DMV along with the bill of sale.
                  "The best hearts are ever the bravest"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I was able to tag mine in Maine-- no title required.

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      Originally posted by Sithly View Post
                      Unless it is a screamin' good deal, I'd pass due to the hassle factor.
                      It really is - just what I want, kind of ugly, but solid and cheap. I want to be able to camp and have dry tack storage, but I don't want to go into debt for it. If he had a title, I'd have snatched it up yesterday. He called me this morning and said he hadn't found it yet, and I suggested he call the court clerk. He did say he took down his ad since he couldn't find the title.

                      I need to look into the law, obviously.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        He can get the title replaced, and legally that's what he has to do - both for himself and any buyer. If he's too lazy to get that done, he can keep his trailer.

                        I would not put myself in that position. I would tell him that when he has the title he can call back, until then I'll keep looking.

                        You have only his word as to why he can't find the title. That might well be true, but it might not. How well do you know him?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Highflyer View Post
                          I was able to tag mine in Maine-- no title required.
                          This - if the trailer is older than 1994 you can register it on the bill of sale only. Anyone can register their trailers in Maine and in many cases, it's much cheaper than your state's DMV fees. I do mine through the staab agency.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Not an issue here in Texas depending on the type and age of the trailer. We just sold an older stock type trailer, didn't have a title when we bought it and obviously, didn't have one when we sold it. Just a bill of sale for each transaction was all that was needed to get the tags.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Don't think it's an issue here in KY either although I wouldn't be spending over a grand for it. Check your state's laws real quick.


                              And BTW we bought a 1963 Rambler from the original owner with the original title in 1987. It was pretty cool to look at. Some people do file them neatly away. We on the other hand, move too much. I think that's what gets people as far as keeping track of those things.
                              Courageous Weenie Eventer Wannabe
                              Incredible Invisible

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by katyb View Post
                                The guy "can't find it" and didn't ever put it in his name when he bought it. It is cheap enough that I can pay cash for it, just what I want, seems sound if not pretty. He is supposedly calling the county clerk to see if there is any way to track down the title. I don't think it is stolen, just based on how much stuff is packed into it - or at least, not recently stolen I guess.


                                I ran the VIN and didn't get any results on google.

                                Thoughts?
                                In a state where titles are not required, yes.

                                In TN, no.

                                If you know any deputies or police officers see if you can get one of them to run the VIN for you. If you don't know anybody, call the sheriff's office, tell them why you need the check, and see if they will run the number.

                                If if comes up "clean" then you might want to take the chance.

                                Good luck in any case.

                                G.
                                Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Over the Hill View Post
                                  Here in Florida, it depends on the weight of the trailer whether it needs to be titled. If unsure, you take it to a weigh station, take the weight slip to the tag office. If under a certain weight, just tag, if over, title.
                                  Same here in Ohio, as long as it's under a certain weight (I think 4000lbs) here, no title required. Just get a good bill of sale. I would check with the laws in your state, and as long as you're legal and can get tags, who cares?

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I'm dealing with this issue now. When my family purchased my trailer (brand new!) about 7 years ago, we were told we didn't have to get tags on it in SC. I was young at the time and had no dog in the fight. I have since moved to CO, which DOES require tags, and my trailer has no title. I'm fighting with SC to get one because everything (bill of sale, etc) is in my mother's name and she has since passed away. It's a nightmare.
                                    Fils Du Reverdy (Revy)- 1993 Selle Francais Gelding
                                    My equine soulmate
                                    Mischief Managed (Tully)- JC Priceless Jewel 2002 TB Gelding

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                                    • #19
                                      It depends on how difficult it is to get a "hardship" title in your state. Here in SC ... pretty darn easy, so I wouldn't hesitate.

                                      In VA, where I used to live ... awful lot of hoops, so I would probably pass, or insist that the seller do the work BEFORE I hand over my hard-earned cash.
                                      Equinox Equine Massage

                                      In the depth of winter, I finally learned that there was in me invincible summer.
                                      -Albert Camus

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #20
                                        Originally posted by Guilherme View Post
                                        In a state where titles are not required, yes.

                                        In TN, no.

                                        If you know any deputies or police officers see if you can get one of them to run the VIN for you. If you don't know anybody, call the sheriff's office, tell them why you need the check, and see if they will run the number.

                                        If if comes up "clean" then you might want to take the chance.

                                        Good luck in any case.

                                        G.
                                        Thanks! That's a good idea.

                                        Comment

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