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5 Tips to Get Rid of a Junk Car

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Scott Desind of has represented thousands of traffic cases in a span of 25 years and works with a team of qualified attorneys. They regularly publish their experience and insights to their blog.
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In California, a junk vehicle, also called a salvage vehicle, is a car that has been totally destroyed or has suffered damage that is valued at more than the insurance company is willing to invest for repairs. Most car owners, when confronted with the second scenario, choose not to get the car fixed and exchange the title for a salvage certificate, which replaces the title as an ownership document.

Importance of a Salvage Title

It is important to alert buyers that your car has a salvage title. As of July 1, 2012, California became the first in the nation to pass a salvage title law that requires all car dealers to place a red sticker on any car with a junk, salvage or flood title.

You will need to transfer ownership of your junk car, if you intend to sell it.

  • The state of California requires you to sign and date the title of your junk car and document the reading on the odometer.

  • You will also have to document the smog certification if your car was made after 1975 and it is not a diesel, hybrid or electric car. In California, you are not required to issue a bill of sale.

Once you take care of the title, license plate and registration requirements to comply with state salvage auto regulations, it is time to decide how you will get rid of your junk car.

Some people allow their old cars to sit in a driveway or backyard for a long time before removing them. Corroding metal and moldy tires make an eyesore for curb appeal, and many neighborhoods have covenants and city ordinances that strictly forbid junk cars from sitting indefinitely in a yard.

The sale of your junk car may not happen overnight. This takes a lot of patience and work, but eventually, it happens. This post talks about 5 things that you must keep in mind when selling your junk car.

Keep Car Registration and Damage Disclosure Statement Handy

Have your car registration and title with damage disclosure statement in hand to prove ownership. Each junk yard has its own set of requirements for accepting junk cars.

  • Junk yard operators want to see the title and registration to confirm that the car actually belongs to the person selling it. This is a legal precaution, and no junk yard wants to buy a stolen car.

  • The DMV in most states requires owners to complete paperwork to disclose damage on the back of the title.

Know Every Detail About the Damage to Your Car

You should also be prepared to give as much information as possible about your car to the junkyard. They need to know if the car is in a working condition because that will determine how they create an inventory of parts. They need to know which parts are most damaged. For example, are you getting rid of the car because it is not possible to drive it, or only because the paint peeled and the metal is rusted?

Research and Know the Market Value of Your Car

It is extremely helpful to know the Kelley Blue Book value of your car, even though it is damaged. This will help you evaluate the junkyard’s offer to you. Prices follow no set market rules. Each offer always depends on the condition of your car parts and the owner of the junk yard. Two junk yards in the same town could make separate offers, and one could offer twice as much as the other. It benefits every car owner to shop around.

Look For Junk Yards That are Environmentally Friendly

The environmentally friendly status of a junk yard may seem unimportant. As the owner, you are more focused on getting the best deal for your salvaged car. However;

  • Companies that do have some kind of green policy in place are more likely to be operating fairly and offering you that best deal.

  • They tend to obey the regulations set forth by the state, federal and local governments regarding car disposals.

It is therefore recommended that you follow a junkyard’s process before you sell your car to see if they truly are eco-friendly and not merely using this pitch to get more business.

Remove Personal Items From The Car.

This tip seems almost unnecessary to place as a reminder. Yet many car owners are so anxious about selling the car or parts that they forget they have stored some personal items inside the car. The favorite pendant hanging from the rear view mirror, front designer plate, heavy duty ice scrapers or your children’s favorite coloring book stashed in a seat pocket are all fair game. Remove them.

Also, remove trash and search cubby compartments and under seats for belongings before the car is moved from your yard. After a junk yard makes a purchase, anything inside is no longer yours.

Keep in mind the above points as you go about selling your junk car and you’ll not just get a good deal but will also keep yourself safe from any legal hassles that may arise due to incomplete documentation or involvement of your vehicle in an untoward incident.

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