Buying and Selling FAQs in North Dakota

FAQs for Buying and Selling a Car in North Dakota

There is a lot that goes into buying and selling a car. Below you'll find some answers to common questions/scenarios that you may find yourself in. If you have specific questions about the circumstances of your car sale or purchase, please contact your local North Dakota Department of Transportation (DOT).

If you are buying a car, before you start asking specific questions, you should keep in mind the additional costs that will accompany your purchase. These often include:

  • Car insurance.
  • North Dakota DOT vehicle registration.
  • Title transfer fees.
  • Vehicle inspection fees.
  • Sales tax.
  • Local county taxes.
  • License plate fees.

What do I need to do when I sell my car in North Dakota?

When you sell your car, you must sign and date Part 1 of your car's title (Seller's Assignment & Warranty of Title). Be sure to include the price you sold the car for, the date of the sale, and the odometer reading if your car is less than 10 years old. If your car is less than 9 years old, you will also need a completed Damage/Salvage Disclosure Statement (Form SFN 18609).

What do I do with the license plates from the car I've sold?

Be sure to remove your license plates from the vehicle. You will get a registration credit as long as you transfer the plate to another vehicle. Please contact the North Dakota Department of Transportation for more information.

What should I do when I buy a car in North Dakota?

When you buy a car in North Dakota, be sure to apply for a new registration within 5 days. You will also need to pay a $5 title transfer fee, 5% sales tax, and registration fees based on the vehicle's age and weight. Be sure the seller has signed, dated, and completed Part 1, including the odometer reading if the car is less than 10 years old. You will need to complete Part 3 of the title. If the vehicle is less than 9 years old, also be sure to get a completed Damage/Salvage Disclosure Statement (Form SFN 18609) from the seller.

You'll also need to shop around and buy a car insurance policy. Visit our Car Insurance Center to search for a provider.

Before you buy a used car, you should think about ordering a vehicle history report or VIN report. A vehicle history report can help reveal past damages or mechanical issues that may cause costly repairs down the line. For more information, please visit our Vehicle History Reports page.

Can I bring a car from another state into North Dakota?

Yes you can. If you buy a car with a title (or a Manufacturer's Certificate of Origin, if the car is new) from another state, you will have to complete the Application for a Certificate of Title & Registration of a Vehicle (Form SFN 2872). You will also have to pay additional fees to transfer an out-of-state title. The amount of fees you will pay will be based on the type of vehicle.

If I buy a car in Canada can I import it into North Dakota myself?

No. A registered importer (RI) must bring the car into ND. For more information about importing a car, read the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration import guidelines .


SFN 2872
Application for Certificate of Title and Registration of a Vehicle
Apply for a new, renewal, OR duplicate ND DOT title, registration, or tabs.
SFN 18609
Damage/Salvage Disclosure Statement
Fill this form out to disclose damage to a vehicle you are selling that is less than 9 years old. Must be signed by the buyer AND seller.
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