Documents Required When Selling Your Bike

31 May 2012

Documents Required When Selling Your Bike

When the time comes to sell your beloved motorcycle, you will need to complete the paperwork properly. Failure to get it right could result in fines and even the next owners fixed penalties such as speeding tickets and parking fines!

All vehicles registered in the UK should have a V5C Registration Certificate. Currently, these are red with blue stripes on the front.

Below are some checks that you should carry out yourself before you sell the bike;

  1. Check that your name and address details (shown on the front) are correct.
  2. With the bike in front of you, check the Registration number matches the bike. Then check the engine and chassis (or VIN) numbers also all match. These are shown on the inside cover of the V5C halfway down the page. Most motorcycles have the VIN number stamped in to the right hand side of the headstock, but this can vary so look in the owner’s manual to determine the location of these. Whilst looking at the Vin number, check the digits look original and have not been tampered with.
  3. All V5C’s have a watermark you must check, these are visible when held up to the light. The water mark is DVLA in capitals.

When you have completed the above checks you are ready to sell the bike. When the buyer is taking the bike away, you are obliged to use the V5C to inform DVLA that the bike has a new keeper. There are two procedures for this;

  1. Selling to a dealer – The dealer buying the bike is not required to register the bike in their name, so instead, section 9 (the yellow part) is the only part you will keep. Give the dealer the rest of the document and have them stamp section 9, add the date & mileage and sign it. This section is for you to keep and then return to DVLA. This will inform them that you no longer own the bike and it is now within the trade. After around 2 weeks you will receive a letter from DVLA thanking you for notifying them of the changes, keep this letter safe.
  2. Selling to the next registered keeper. Any one who isn’t a dealer, will need to be shown as the new keeper on the V5C. Simply complete sections 6 and 8 (that’s the green parts on the left page) Then the new owner is given completed section 10 (the green slip on the right page) while you are obliged to return the rest of the V5C (signed) to DVLA. After around 2 weeks you will receive a letter thanking you for notifying them of the changes, keep this letter safe.

The V5C is the minimum documentation involved in selling your bike, and following the above guide will ensure you comply with the law, but there are other items which will enhance the value of your bike.

Keeping the service book stamped with an up to date service history is good practice, but try to keep service bills and receipts too. These create a much more detailed history and prove the quality of the bikes up keep.

If the bike is old enough, keep all the MOT certificates in date & mileage order. These are rarely forged and go a long way to confirming the mileage. Find the spare key! Having all the keys is especially important these days as bikes often need radio (or RED keys) and these are expensive to replace. And lastly, if you have replaced exhausts or levers or any performance parts, find the original items and include these in the sale, having both the aftermarket and original items is the best way to boost your machines value.

I do hope this guide has been of some use..  

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