Buying from a private party.
After you acquire a vehicle, you have 15 days to transfer the title (ownership) into your name. If you don't transfer the title of a vehicle within 15 days, you'll have to pay penalties of $50 on the 16th day and $2 each day after up to $125.
Learn more about the steps you need to take to transfer the title and register a vehicle here.
Learn more about the step you need to take to transfer the title and register a boat here.
Buying From a dealership.
If you buy a vehicle, trailer or boat from a Washington dealership, they will work with a licensing office to transfer the title (ownership) into your name. You will need to show an unexpired Washington driver license so the dealership can complete the necessary paperwork to register the vehicle in your name, unless you qualify for one of the exemptions under state law (RCW 46.20.025).
For more information, please visit the
Department of Licensing website.
Report the sale of your vehicle.
When you sell or give a vehicle as a gift, file a report of sale so you're not held legally responsible for the new owner's tolling bills, towing charges or civil and criminal issues.
State law requires you to file the report of sale within 5 days of selling your vehicle. Customers reporting a sale online or at a licensing office will pay an $8.75 fee. You can report a sale online at
If you purchased a new vehicle out of state, you will need the following information to license your vehicle in Washington State:
If you purchased a used vehicle out of state, you will need the following information to license the vehicle in Washington State:
If you've recently moved to Washington state, you must title and register your vehicle within 30 days of moving.
If you've moved to Washington or purchased your boat from another state.
Visit DOL's website to learn more about registering the vessel you just purchased or titling it in Washington from another state.
Learn more about Quick Title services.
Quick Title services allow you to walk into the Thurston County Auditor’s Office and walk out the same day with your vehicle or boat title. With standard title service, it can take up to 6-8 weeks for you to receive a title by mail.
A Quick Title costs $50 in addition to the standard title fee, registration fee and taxes. In Thurston County, Quick Title services are available at the Thurston County Auditor’s Office, Lacey Auto Licensing, Package Express Auto Licensing and South County Licensing. Not all transactions qualify for a Quick Title and they are not available online.
Each Quick Title transaction is unique, and the paperwork for each transaction varies. Some of the required documents include:
Quick Titles are not available for:
Dealers work with the purchaser to prepare all required paperwork to submit directly to a licensing office.
Transfer of Ownership
We require the following documentation if you will NOT be moving the home as part of the sale:
We require the following documentation if the home WILL MOVE as part of the sale:
What forms of payment do we accept?
We accept cash and check only for in-office vehicle and boat title transactions.