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Old 01-11-2011, 06:31 PM   #1
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Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

Im looking at dirt bikes as I plan on getting one in a month or so. Im very wary on bikes with no title. Ive already conversed with a few pretty sketchy fellas, and I dont want to buy a dirt bike that I can't get a title for. In this state, now you need to have an OHV (Off Highway Vehicle) tag to legally ride it anywhere, and you need a title to get that tag. The only reason I can see someone WOULDN'T have a title is if they still owe money on it, bought it from someone who still owed money on it, or it's stolen.

Is there a safe way to buy a used dirt bike with no title? Whats the process to get a title in my name if I can't get one from the seller? Should I avoid these deals at all costs, or are they okay if done right?
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Old 01-11-2011, 06:43 PM   #2
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Re: Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

Why the headache? There are thousands of bikes on Craigslist with a title. I will say though as a kid I owned several without having one. Didn't really know any better back then and just bought whatever anyone was willing to sell me. No questions asked.

These days though, I have to have a title for every vehicle I own. Just helps me sleep better I guess.
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Old 01-11-2011, 06:47 PM   #3
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Re: Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

This is true...but a lot of bikes dont have a title, and being so skeptical of their authenticity, I steer clear of them. I dont know how it works, but if its a simple process and a $20.00 or so fee to get a new title in my name, then I won't sweat it. I just need to know what I should do to make a safe deal without a title from the owner. Whatever I do, I NEED to get a title before or during the transaction. I won't buy a bike without a gaurentee I can get one.
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Old 01-11-2011, 06:55 PM   #4
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Re: Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

At least get something in writing like a bill of sale. The point I'm trying to make is that it'll be a good idea to have a document that will cover your ass just in case their is some fraud surrounding the bike that you choose purchase.
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Old 01-11-2011, 06:56 PM   #5
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Re: Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

Also check your local DMV to find out what the process is for replacing lost titles.
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Old 01-11-2011, 08:11 PM   #6
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Re: Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

That's like asking...

"I want to have sex with this girl who has herpes and crabs safely....how?"

Sure it can be done, but here's so much hassle and so much risk, is it really worth it?


Things to consider...

1) You can't get a copy of a title that's under someone elses name, unless you have a power of attorney or something similar.

2) Most states now days will not give out any information about a previous/current owner of a vehicle.

3) A bill of sale (especially one that isn't notarized) won't do you much good. If it turns out that the bike is stolen, and the cops take it, you lose out. Then YOU have to take the previous guy to small claims court to try and get your money back, which isn't guaranteed.

4) No one is lazy to the point that they wouldn't get a copy of THEIR title to increase the resale value by hundreds (if not thousands). This usually means it's stolen or they bought it from someone without a title, meaning unless you track down that person, you're fucked. (refer to #1 and #2).


I know this from expereince as I purchased a bike from my friend with no title. The story he gave me was believable (Military guys will sometimes dump old vehicles when they get relocated), plus he got it from a friend who used to own a dealership. I checked the bikes history and the bike was not stolen. Anyways it's pretty much impossible to acquire the title at that point. Luckly I used the bike as a stunt bike anyways and only paid $250 for it (96 GSXR750). I stunted it for a couple months, then sold it to someone else for the same price.

Last edited by REVLIMIT; 01-11-2011 at 08:29 PM.
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Old 01-13-2011, 11:22 PM   #7
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Re: Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

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Originally Posted by REVLIMIT View Post
No one is lazy to the point that they wouldn't get a copy of THEIR title to increase the resale value by hundreds (if not thousands). This usually means it's stolen or they bought it from someone without a title, meaning unless you track down that person, you're fucked. (refer to #1 and #2).
Not true, there are TONS of race bikes out there with no title.

Many bikes are bought new, out of state, and not registered/titled because they won't be used on public roads (i have done it a couple times myself).

Damn near every bike from AMA teams/riders will not come with a title because it has never been registered.
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Old 01-13-2011, 11:32 PM   #8
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Re: Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

I recently bought a used 05 RM125 on craigslist. Great shape and with the title. Just needed a new clutch, chain and sprockets. Ran nice otherwise.

You just have to see the bike and person. If they cant produce a title then dont get it. At the same time, I wouldnt stress a title too much on a dirtbike/ATV etc because its not a road vehicle. But then where I live youre not required to tag/register off road vehicles of that nature.
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Old 01-13-2011, 11:40 PM   #9
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Re: Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

Honestly if it wasn't for the cops I personally wouldn't give a shit about the paperwork. But where I live, if I get pulled over with a bike in the back of my Astro Van, I'd better be able to prove that I own it one way or the other.
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Old 01-13-2011, 11:56 PM   #10
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Re: Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

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Honestly if it wasn't for the cops I personally wouldn't give a shit about the paperwork. But where I live, if I get pulled over with a bike in the back of my Astro Van, I'd better be able to prove that I own it one way or the other.
+1 The cops around here are fucking nazi's when it comes to bikes. In baltimore you aren't even ALLOWED TO OWN a dirtbike in city limits (due to all the illegal street riders around here lol). If they see a dirtbike on your property, the will literally enter your property and impound it, permanently. Outside the city limits cops will pull you over just to check to see if your vin and engine # match properly. Even if you are just trailering the bike to a private off road property, you run the risk of it being confiscated. Bottomline, if you want to protect your property from the man, you better make sure you have the right paperwork. A salvage or no title vehicle will be a pain in the ass to get through inspection, and there runs the risk that IT IS STOLEN, and you don't even want to fuck with that scenario.

Last edited by I'm a little BITCH!; 01-13-2011 at 11:59 PM.
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Old 01-13-2011, 11:58 PM   #11
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Re: Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

Older model dirtbikes didn't even come with a title.
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Old 01-14-2011, 12:06 AM   #12
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Re: Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

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+1 The cops around here are fucking nazi's when it comes to bikes. In baltimore you aren't even ALLOWED TO OWN a dirtbike in city limits (due to all the illegal street riders around here lol). If they see a dirtbike on your property, the will literally enter your property and impound it, permanently. Outside the city limits cops will pull you over just to check to see if your vin and engine # match properly. Even if you are just trailering the bike to a private off road property, you run the risk of it being confiscated. Bottomline, if you want to protect your property from the man, you better make sure you have the right paperwork. A salvage or no title vehicle will be a pain in the ass to get through inspection, and there runs the risk that IT IS STOLEN, and you don't even want to fuck with that scenario.
I have the titles to both my dirt bikes, but never stressed putting them in my name. The 2nd dirtbike I bought came from a guy in my state, he still had the oringinal maryland title from the original owners where he never bothered swapping it in his name/state. I didnt either. But wondering now if I should. I was just content to have the paper work as something to prove the bike was sold to me and not stolen.

When/if I get pulled and show the paperwork. Do you think the cops would really think I stole the bike, then broke in the owners house and stole the title?

Should I have the titles put in my name. I mean there are guys that buy street bikes for track use and never title them.
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Old 01-14-2011, 12:12 AM   #13
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Re: Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

Quote:
Originally Posted by squiddlesmcgee View Post
+1 The cops around here are fucking nazi's when it comes to bikes. In baltimore you aren't even ALLOWED TO OWN a dirtbike in city limits (due to all the illegal street riders around here lol). If they see a dirtbike on your property, the will literally enter your property and impound it, permanently. Outside the city limits cops will pull you over just to check to see if your vin and engine # match properly. Even if you are just trailering the bike to a private off road property, you run the risk of it being confiscated. Bottomline, if you want to protect your property from the man, you better make sure you have the right paperwork. A salvage or no title vehicle will be a pain in the ass to get through inspection, and there runs the risk that IT IS STOLEN, and you don't even want to fuck with that scenario.

Well...silly enough the murder rate here has been so ridiculous that the cops no longer even bother kids riding dirtbikes or carting them through the city. That's considered little shit. These new cats are bold enough to louge at redlights in neutral and pump gas at the station LIKE IT'S LEGAL! When I was coming up we had to stay on the move for fear of getting our bikes impounded.

In my case though, many of the cops in my area know me....know I'm a licensed rider, and even more importantly, know I know better.
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Old 01-14-2011, 12:27 AM   #14
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Re: Buying a used dirt bike on Craigslist without a title safely...how?

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Well...silly enough the murder rate here has been so ridiculous that the cops no longer even bother kids riding dirtbikes or carting them through the city. That's considered little shit. These new cats are bold enough to louge at redlights in neutral and pump gas at the station LIKE IT'S LEGAL! When I was coming up we had to stay on the move for fear of getting our bikes impounded.

In my case though, many of the cops in my area know me....know I'm a licensed rider, and even more importantly, know I know better.
Same here sort of. In the past the cops chased if you were caught on the street anywhere with a quad or dirtbike. Now they dont bother them as long as they stay off the main roads. They pretty much gave up and focus on the bigger things like drug busts. As long as theyre on the side roads in the neighborhood, the cops leave them a lone now.
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