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Discussion Starter #1
Anyone have experience with this? I did this once, but it was all in-state and the seller was financed through a local brick and mortar bank. I bought the car for less than his loan principal, so we both went to his bank, I put up my money, he put up his, and the title (held by the bank) was signed over to me. Easy as pie.

Currently, I'm looking at a car a few hours away in another state and he is financed through a credit union that operates primarily online, and doesn't have a brick and mortar location within 500 miles. The seller called them and they told him we would be able to settle his loan together on the phone and that they can release the title to the DMV, to the seller, or to the buyer (me). It sounds like my state (PA) prefers when the title is released to the new owner (me) so I can apply for a new one with the old title attached.

Here's my hangup: How does the buyer (me) walk away with proof that the title is on its way to him if we settle the loan over the phone and not in-house? I really want to drive away with this car on the spot if we come to a deal and not have to drive back there after waiting a few weeks for the title to be released to me. In doing so, I want some physical proof in my car that I own it, in case I get pulled over. PA makes it impossible to get a temporary tag or brief trip permit for purchases like this, so I would be insuring it for the trip and relying on having proof of ownership if I get pulled over for having an invalid tag.

Thank you in advance for any advice here. Private party sales are such a pain when a lien is involved.
 

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Unsure of PA laws but a bill of sale should give you the proof of ownership you're looking for.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
walk away....
Thanks for the advice.

Unsure of PA laws but a bill of sale should give you the proof of ownership you're looking for.
Yup! That's the way I ended up doing it. We met at my own bank in the presence of a notary and a bill of sale that I drew up depicting our conditions and describing the existing lien. I paid him a cashier's check for the difference in loan balance and our sale price, and we wired the rest of the money to his account on the phone to pay off the loan. His bank required written authorization to release the title to me, so he wrote up a document, signed and notorized, and sent it to his bank in my presence. The bank confirmed with me that the title would be released to me, and, having already added the car to my insurance, I drop off with it with my mustang's plates as a loaner.

Title arrived in the mail without a hitch. Glad I went through with this and scored a good deal.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
best thing to do. i dont touch cars with liens on them, unless there is a proper lien release included in the paperwork.
Which is likely why I scored a good deal - willingness to jump through the hurdles when other buyers would not.

Glad I went through with it.
 

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A car with a lien is pretty easy to sale if you call the bank/credit union beforehand.

I just sold a car with a lien, picked him up at the airport, he test drove it we agreed on price went to my credit union, informed the loan officer it would be sold and i’d need the title (which i knew they had because i called) after that he gave me the cash at the teller window paid the loan off and went up and grabbed the title sign it over and he’s on his way. It was maybe 30 more minutes of time added and all done on video. Don’t let a lien scare you out of a car you want, cheers.


Glad you got the car OP! Post pics :)
 

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Anyone have experience with this? I did this once, but it was all in-state and the seller was financed through a local brick and mortar bank. I bought the car for less than his loan principal, so we both went to his bank, I put up my money, he put up his, and the title (held by the bank) was signed over to me. Easy as pie.

Currently, I'm looking at a car a few hours away in another state and he is financed through a credit union that operates primarily online, and doesn't have a brick and mortar location within 500 miles. The seller called them and they told him we would be able to settle his loan together on the phone and that they can release the title to the DMV, to the seller, or to the buyer (me). It sounds like my state (PA) prefers when the title is released to the new owner (me) so I can apply for a new one with the old title attached.

Here's my hangup: How does the buyer (me) walk away with proof that the title is on its way to him if we settle the loan over the phone and not in-house? I really want to drive away with this car on the spot if we come to a deal and not have to drive back there after waiting a few weeks for the title to be released to me. In doing so, I want some physical proof in my car that I own it, in case I get pulled over. PA makes it impossible to get a temporary tag or brief trip permit for purchases like this, so I would be insuring it for the trip and relying on having proof of ownership if I get pulled over for having an invalid tag.

Thank you in advance for any advice here. Private party sales are such a pain when a lien is involved.
The title should be released to you and you alone once payment has been made. If the credit union won't do that walk......
 

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Discussion Starter #9
A car with a lien is pretty easy to sale if you call the bank/credit union beforehand.

I just sold a car with a lien, picked him up at the airport, he test drove it we agreed on price went to my credit union, informed the loan officer it would be sold and i’d need the title (which i knew they had because i called) after that he gave me the cash at the teller window paid the loan off and went up and grabbed the title sign it over and he’s on his way. It was maybe 30 more minutes of time added and all done on video. Don’t let a lien scare you out of a car you want, cheers.


Glad you got the car OP! Post pics :)
Thanks! It's actually not another mustang. I needed something a bit more practical for my small family but didn't want to succumb to the pressure to buy an SUV. Plus my better half still wants to drive stick and was open to a hatchback. So.... that turned into a Focus ST :)

The title should be released to you and you alone once payment has been made. If the credit union won't do that walk......
I think there's some confusion. I already bought the car. And yes, I set it up so the title was released to me.
 

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Okay, then I'm not seeing the issue if the title has been released to you and is coming to your address. Title shows ownership. The previous owner doesn't truly own the vehicle, the bank did. One thing to note, once you get the title, take it to the DMV and file for a new title with no lean. A lot of people don't know this, but if you have paid a vehicle off and have the title but the lean is still noted on it, the bank can technically come back and say the vehicle is theirs.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Okay, then I'm not seeing the issue if the title has been released to you and is coming to your address. Title shows ownership. The previous owner doesn't truly own the vehicle, the bank did. One thing to note, once you get the title, take it to the DMV and file for a new title with no lean. A lot of people don't know this, but if you have paid a vehicle off and have the title but the lean is still noted on it, the bank can technically come back and say the vehicle is theirs.
In post #1, I hadn't bought the car and was looking for advice.

In post #4, I had figured out the logistics and bought the car.

I think the posters after that thought that I was still mulling it over. Nope. Done deal. It's mine. Got a great deal because I was willing to work with the lien.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Did the bank just send you the title? Just wondered. I've never bought a car that way.
Yup! They sent me email confirmation while I was conducting the transaction, and about a week later I received the title in the mail.

The bank also required that the seller send them written authorization to release the title to me, which I had notorized while we were at my bank.
 

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Yup! They sent me email confirmation while I was conducting the transaction, and about a week later I received the title in the mail.

The bank also required that the seller send them written authorization to release the title to me, which I had notarized while we were at my bank.
Smart move having it notarized. I recently gave my Step-Son a car a bought off my sister and rebuilt for him for his first car. We went and had the gift form for our state notarized and the DMV never even batted an eye at us about me giving it to him. No monetary value involved so he didn't have to pay any sales tax on the car when we transferred it.
 
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