Buyer's Checklist

Please arrive in our office before 4 PM for all title transfers or if you are moving into Iowa from another state.  **No title transfers, out-of-state move-ins, trailer transfers or junking certificates will be processed after 4 PM.

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To transfer a vehicle into your name, you must have an Iowa driver’s license, Iowa state issued photo ID or Social Security number.  If you do not have an Iowa driver's license, you must present your original Social Security card at the time of transfer. 

The original title with the "Assignment of Title" completed by the seller and buyer.  In Iowa, this is located on the back of the title.   

Bring the following completed documents to our office: 

  • Read carefully before completing the assignment of title.  
  • Alterations or erasures will void the title.  
  • The title must be transferred within 30 days from the date of sale to avoid penalty.  We recommend coming into our office as soon as you get the title, rather than waiting 30 days, due to many unforeseen circumstances that may occur. 
  • The name and signature of the seller must be the same as it appears on the front of the title.  
  • If the vehicle has an Iowa title, and two owners are listed with the word "AND" to the right of their names, both owners must sign the back of the title.  
  • If the vehicle has an Iowa title, and the word "OR" appears to the right of their names, either owner can sign as seller.  

Each state has different signature requirements based upon the conjunction between names.  Call our office if the vehicle has an out of state title (515) 993-5812.

  1. An "Application for Certificate of Title and/or Registration" that has been completed and signed by all persons to be listed as owners on the new title.  You cannot place a person’s name on a vehicle title without their personal information and signature on the application for title.
  2. If the vehicle is ten years old, or newer, the odometer reading must be completed on the back of the Iowa title BY THE SELLER with no tenths.
  3. If the vehicle is seven years old, or newer, the “Damage Disclosure Statements” must be completed on the back of the Iowa title.  An out of state title will require a separate “Damage Disclosure Statement” to be completed by the Iowa buyer.
  4. A purchase agreement or bill of sale is required for all vehicles and trailers purchased from a dealer or retail store.
  5. Call the Dallas County Motor Vehicle Office (515) 993-5812 to ensure you have all necessary documents, signatures and information.  Please have your paperwork in hand when calling.  

The above requirements do not cover special circumstances that frequently occur such as leased vehicles, trusts, gifts, use of power of attorney, transfers upon death and many other situations.  In these cases, please call our office before making an unnecessary trip (515) 993-5812. 

This is general information only.  Nothing is guaranteed until we see all completed, original documents in our office.  Transfers cannot be completed by mail.