Transferring Motor Warranties When Selling Your Vehicle – Pros and Cons Explained
An extended warranty can provide peace of mind when purchasing a new car. Since extended warranties often kick in after the original manufacturer’s warranty has expired, your car will be covered for the length of the contract. An added benefit of most extended warranties is that they are often transferable if you decide to sell your vehicle before the expiration of the warranty contract. This can add value to your vehicle and make it more attractive to buyers.
Can You Transfer a Warranty When Selling Your Car?
Before you purchase an extended warranty on a new or used vehicle, check whether that warranty is transferable (which is not always the case).
If it is, follow these basic steps to transfer an existing warranty to the buyer of your vehicle.
- Contact the administrator of the contract (dealership or third party).
- Fill out a warranty transfer form. (most forms will require information from both the seller and buyer).
- Provide the vehicle’s service history (proof of regular maintenance and service are often required to transfer a warranty.)
- Show documentation that a private sale has been made (eg. – copy of title transfer document).
- Get an inspection report from a qualified mechanic.
- Each warranty may have different vehicle inspection requirements to ensure a warranty has not become void.
- Check with your provider for authorized mechanics or requirements.
- Mail in all of the above paperwork PLUS the applicable transfer fee (varies by provider).
- In most cases, warranty transfers must be made within a pre-determined number of days following the sale of a vehicle, so make sure you complete the requirements as soon as possible.
Not all extended warranties are transferable. Reasons an extended warranty may not be transferable include:
- Attempting to transfer a warranty to a different vehicle.
- Modifications or repairs made in which factory parts were not used.
- Repairs or services made at an unauthorized mechanic.
- Dealerships, for example, may require maintenance at an authorized location.
- Failure to conduct required maintenance, which can include:
- Oil changes.
- Routine engine maintenance.
- Brake inspections.
- Unreported damage to the vehicle body or frame.
- Misuse of the vehicle.
- Street racing is a common reason for voiding a warranty.
- Repairs and service that is not made in a timely fashion.
- Transferring a warranty between owners outside of the allowable window.
In the event that you end up with a warranty that won’t transfer due to any of the circumstances mentioned above, you typically have two options:
- Pay for any repairs as needed on an on-going basis.
- Obtain a new extended warranty from a third-party provider.