Can I Sell A Car without a title to CarMax?

Blog/ Can I Sell A Car without a title to CarMax?


Does CarMax Buy Cars without a pink slip

AuthorSarah RobinsonCategory Car Advice

The Answer: You must have your title to sell your car to CarMax.

You’ve probably thought about or even asked the question “Can I sell my car to CarMax without the title?” or “Will CarMax buy my car even if the title is salvage or pawned?” The short answer to this question is no. CarMax requires you to have a valid title to your vehicle in order to sell it to them. This is one of their primary requirements and they do not make exceptions on this rule. They will accept salvage titles, but only in some cases. Otherwise, you cannot sell your car through CarMax without a valid title.

Another issue that may come up when selling your car to CarMax is if there are more than one person on the title to the vehicle. In these cases, each person must be present. This means that each person on the title will have to be present for the appraisal to present identification and any other necessary documents to prove they own the vehicle. This can make the process of selling your car more difficult.

CarMax has an ironclad rule about car titles that is not relative to state and local laws. They will however purchase cars that have a lien on the title so long as the amount payed for the car will pay off the lien, such as in the instance of a title pawn loan, CarMax will pay off the title loan, give the seller the balance and then have the seller sign over the title. This gives sellers with title pawns an option for getting out from under a title loan.

Reasons Why CarMax Won’t Buy A Car With No Title

There are a number of reasons why CarMax won’t buy a car without a valid title. The number one reason for this is because in most cases CarMax intends to resell your vehicle to another person. In order to these they need legal ownership of the vehicle in the form of a valid title that has been signed over into their name.

Secondly, vehicles must be registered to the owner when sold, therefore, an absent or missing title can causes issues once the vehicle is resold. CarMax wants a clean and clear title so that they can freely sell the title to whomever they choose. This often includes selling the vehicle across state lines. Each state has different rules regarding the buying and selling of titled and non titled automobiles. CarMax always requires a title in an effort to cover their bases.

Always requiring a title does have the benefit of ensuring that each sale is legitimate. For those that purchase a car from CarMax, they will always be presented with a clean title to the vehicle which makes acquiring insurance, tag, and other documents easier. However, for folks in a tricky situation this can make selling your car to CarMax difficult or even impossible. There are a number of reasons why a title may not be present:

  • Age of the vehicle, vehicles over a certain age do not always have titles
  • Lost or stolen titles
  • Liens where the lien holder will not relinquish the title
  • Salvaged titles in some places are not accepted as regular car titles, particularly with flood damaged vehicles and etc

In cases where a title simply can’t be acquired, the seller may need to look for options outside of CarMax.

Are There Alternative Options?

There are a few ways that sellers can sell their car without a title. One way is to have the seller or purchaser file for an abandoned title if no proof of ownership can be given. This often requires filing paperwork through the local dmv or other government agencies. This basically lists a vehicle as unclaimed and then allows the new owner to have a new title issued. This can be a time consuming and tedious process.

You can sell a vehicle in some places outright without a title as well, though it is generally advised to have a notary present, to notify the state’s vehicle registry, and write up a bill of sale acknowledging the lack of title. If you take these steps it is generally acceptable to sell the vehicle to an individual who can then apply for a new title, though this comes with some liability and can be time consuming.

SellMax is a great option for selling your vehicle without a title. In most cases, SellMax can make you an offer and buy your car without the title. SellMax specializes in damaged, junk, or troubled cars and has all the tools necessary to take your car off your hands without all that added paperwork. In most cases we can make you an offer and buy your car in the same day.

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