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Old 08-21-2005, 06:41 AM   #1
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The purchase process...

Here is one of those "I'm a dumb foreigner" questions. I haven't bought a car privately in the US before, and I have read various sources that say when buying a car privately, ensure that the title changes hands at the time of the bill of sale. Thus a clean transaction...

This is all well and good until you buy a car that has an existing lien on it, in which the title is being held by the bank or lien company. To get the title, the seller will have to recieve the money for the car (from me, and hence I will have bill of sale), pay the lien off, and wait 2-3 weeks for the title to arrive, and then forward it to me. In turn, I would have forked out the payment for the car, have the car and the bill of sale but no title. What is to stop the seller from "doing something dogdy" and not paying the lien off, running with the money, thus leaving me without a title, and a reposession company chasing after the car? Doesn't sound like a place I want to be.

Nor do I want to give up a first check to pay the lien off, and then a second once he has the title in hand.

I also read somewhere of a banks comments on behalf of a seller - "recieve payment for the vehicle, do not hand the vehicle over until the title has been produced by the lien company, then hand the vehicle with the title". As a buyer, there is NO WAY I would give payment for the car without receiving the car at the same time!!

So I guess it comes down to the following - what is the legal stance of the bill of sale?

I know this sounds dramatic and non-trustworthy, but when there is this much of MY money involved, I want to dot all the i's and cross all the t's.....

Any advice is much appreciated.

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Old 08-21-2005, 07:11 AM   #2
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Talking

Not an issue.

Before you hand any money over to the seller, communicate with the lien holder.

Normally, you can send the balance due to the lien holder directly and they will release the lien on the title (they usually hold same). You can negotiate exactly WHEN you pay the seller any balances due, ie when you have a clean title in your hot little hands.

Also, all of this needs to be documented before hand with BOS and the like.

Make sense?
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Old 08-21-2005, 08:21 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brucelee
Not an issue.

Before you hand any money over to the seller, communicate with the lien holder.

Normally, you can send the balance due to the lien holder directly and they will release the lien on the title (they usually hold same). You can negotiate exactly WHEN you pay the seller any balances due, ie when you have a clean title in your hot little hands.

Also, all of this needs to be documented before hand with BOS and the like.

Make sense?
Thanks Bruce - makes good sense.
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Old 08-21-2005, 08:37 AM   #4
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Make sure you use a check from the Nigerian Minister of Finance because the seller may give you a title from the Hatian DOT.

B-L is far more comfortable than I would be offshore. The US has become a place populated with paper-bandits to the extent you cannot assume a 'certified' bank cheque is valid.

Best of luck.

jim
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Old 08-21-2005, 11:31 AM   #5
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I saw no reference to " off shore."
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Old 08-21-2005, 01:21 PM   #6
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Well, some people might think that Texas is in fact offshore..... I'll be asking to speak with his lien company this week to check that everything is in order.
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Old 08-21-2005, 05:40 PM   #7
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kiwi, I know New Orleans (and its' people) is a different world, but it doesn't make you a foreigner. ROFL

Welcome aboard (and to the great USA).
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Old 08-22-2005, 04:51 AM   #8
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Actually, I confuse people with my address/logon. I am a New Zealander who was in New Orleans for 4 years but have just relocated to Houston. Hence the "kiwiinneworleans" logon. And to educate... a "kiwi" is our national emblem (a flightless bird ); a nickname for a native New Zealander ; but is most often confused here with small green furry fruit...

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