How to Sell a Salvage Car in Vermont is an independent publisher. You will find affiliate links which means we may earn a commission if you purchase through these links. It doesn't cost you anything & it helps us keep the site running.

Selling a car in any condition can be a complicated and frustrating process. When it comes to selling a salvage car can be exhausting. So, we’ve created a guide to help you sell your salvage car in Vermont with little to no hassles. You will be dealing with the Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles (VT DMV) to initiate and complete transactions regarding your salvage car.

Table of Contents

What is a Salvaged Car in Vermont?

Vermont classifies salvaged cars or cars that are a total loss as a vehicle that is severely damaged to the point that it would cost more money to repair the car to its condition before the damages than the car is worth, which is known as the car’s actual cash value (ACV).

You will also hear about rebuilt cars if you plan on keeping your car once it’s declared a salvage to repair/rebuild it. A rebuilt car is a car that was previously considered salvaged but has been repaired and passed the Vermont anti-theft and safety inspection, making it eligible for you to obtain a VT rebuilt car title.

What is Actual Cash Value?

The actual cash value is a car’s replacement cost minus its depreciation. You guessed it! Your salvage car still has value, just not as much value as it had before the damages. You should also know that the ACV reflects the car’s accounting value, but doesn’t necessarily account for the car’s economic value. In this situation, your car could be more or less of value than its ACV when you sell it.

How Do You Determine a Car’s Actual Cash Value?

Determining your car’s actual cash value doesn’t have to be as complicated as it sounds. You can use the following equation to determine your car’s actual value easily:

ACV = purchase price x (expected life – current life) ÷ expected life

Let’s look at a few numbers and facts. Generally speaking, a car’s life expectancy is approximately 11 years. The current life of your car is the age of the car. If your car is the model year 2000, and the current year is 2023, your car’s current life would be 23 years.

Is There a Difference Between Actual Cash Value and Replacement Cost?

Yes. There is a significant difference between actual cash value and replacement cost, and these two instances matter when you’re in the market for auto insurance. How? Say your car was totaled in an accident, and your auto insurance company deems your vehicle salvaged.

In this scenario, since you’re the car’s owner and probably the primary policyholder, your auto insurance company can pay you the replacement cost of the car or pay you the car’s actual cash value. If you accept the replacement cost of your car, which is the option we’re going to assume you’ll agree to, occurs when your auto insurance company gives you the money to purchase a new car of the same type.

On the other hand, if you choose to be paid your car’s actual cash value, it’s not as much money as you may be anticipating. You probably won’t be able to purchase a car of the same type because you won’t have enough money unless you’re coming out of pocket for this cost because of depreciation.

Before you sign any auto insurance paperwork, make sure you thoroughly read the terms, especially the fine print. Signing your name on the paperwork means you agree to the terms set by the auto insurance policy, so make sure you understand what they expect from you and what you can expect from them.

If your auto insurance provider lets you know that they will only pay you for your car’s ACV if it is involved in an accident, and you agree to these terms, make sure you can accept the risk that is associated with this option.

How Do You Sell a Salvage Car in Vermont?

To sell a car in Vermont, you’ll need a car title certificate to sign over to the new owner. You will also need to provide an odometer disclosure statement to certify your vehicle’s mileage at the time of the title transfer, and a bill of sale.

Is a Bill of Sale Required to Sell a Salvage Car in Vermont?

Yes. You need to make sure you have at least 2 bills of sale when you sell your salvaged car. You will give one bill of sale to the owner, and make a copy for you to keep in your records. You can download the Vermont Bill of Sale and Odometer Statement (Form VT-005). The bill of sale provides essential vehicle information, such as the purchase price and other details.

Why is a Bill of Sale Needed to Sell a Salvage Car in Vermont?

The purpose of a Vermont bill of sale is for record-keeping when you’re selling your vehicle privately, which means you’re selling it to another individual. You can create a bill of sale of your own as long as it includes the following information:

  • Vehicle information (make, model, year, vehicle identification number (VIN), and current odometer reading)
  • Buyer information (name, address, and signature)
  • Seller information (name, address, and signature)
  • Selling price and date sold

You can also use the Bill of Sale form provided for you in the previous section.

Are There Salvaged Vehicle Restrictions in Vermont?

A salvaged vehicle in any state is deemed an unsafe “unroadworthy” vehicle, which means you can’t legally operate the vehicle on roads and highways. However, in Vermont, you can repair your car to Vermont’s safety standards, pass the anti-theft and safety inspection, and obtain a VT rebuilt car title.

Can You Sell a Salvaged Car Without the Title in Vermont?

No. You’ll need the car’s title to sell your salvaged car. If you’ve misplaced the car’s title, it happens. You must apply for a Vermont Duplicate Car Title (Form VT-04). Regardless of the selling method you use to sell your salvaged car, you will need to have the car’s title.

Why is the Car’s Title an Essential Document?

The car’s title is also referred to as a certificate of title and an essential, legal document that provides proof of vehicle ownership. The car’s title includes the following information:

  • the name(s) of the car owner(s) and the following information:
  • Year, make, and model of the vehicle (may include the body type of the vehicle)
  • Vehicle color
  • Odometer reading
  • The date on which the odometer reading was done
  • Owner or owners of the vehicle
  • Owner’s address
  • The date on which the title was issued

A car’s title can also include the following:

  • Title number
  • The vehicle’s weight
  • The number of cylinders in the engine
  • The engine number
  • The type of fuel used in the car
  • The license plate number

Some states will require information regarding flood damage or a “salvage” label will be included on the car’s title. The “salvage” title can be removed if you repair the car to Vermont’s safety standards and pass the anti-theft inspection. At this time, you will be eligible to apply for a salvage VT rebuilt car title.

The car’s title should have the signature of one or multiple state officials who are in charge of motor vehicles or revenue collection, such as the Division of Motor Vehicles or Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), Department of Transportation (DOT), Motor Vehicle Division (MVD), and similar motor vehicle departments. In South Carolina, you would be looking for signatures from the DMV. In Vermont, you will report to the Department of Motor Vehicles.

Can You Sell a Salvaged Car Without the Car’s Registration in Vermont?

Although your car’s registration card is an essential document, it does not carry as much weight as the car’s title, so you won’t need it to sell your salvage car. As long as you have the car’s title, you’re in the clear.

How to Get a Vermont Salvage Car Title

Getting a salvage car title in Vermont doesn’t have to be a hassle if you follow these simple instructions. If you decide to keep your car once your auto insurance provider deems it a salvage, you are required to apply for a Vermont salvage title within 15 days of the total loss settlement.

To apply for a salvage car title in Vermont, you need to submit a completed Vermont Rebuilt/Salvage Title Application (Form VT-017). You will also need to pay the $35 fee VT salvage title fee.

Feel free to contact the VT DMV at (802) 828-2000 for details about where to submit your application and address any other questions or concerns you may have about applying for your Vermont salvaged car title.

After you receive your VT salvaged car title, you are eligible to start the rebuilding process to have your car inspected and get back on the road. Be advised that the VT DMV does NOT issue salvaged titles for vehicles that are over 15 years old. If you have a salvaged vehicle that is more than 15 years old, you can call the VT DMV for information about the steps you need to take if you have an older salvaged vehicle.

Vermont Salvage Rebuilt Car Inspections

Once you rebuild your salvaged car, it must pass an anti-theft and safety inspection before you can apply for a VT rebuilt car title.

Vermont VIN Assignment

If your salvaged car doesn’t have a vehicle identification number (VIN), you must apply for one before you can have your car inspected. To apply for a VIN in Vermont, you will need the following documents:

  • A completed Application for Assignment of VIN/HIN (Form VT-003)
  • The car’s Vermont salvage title
  • Bills of sale for all parts used to repair the vehicle
  • Pictures of the rebuilt car

You will submit the above-listed documents to the following address:

Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles
120 State Street
Montpelier, VT 05603

The Vermont DMV will call you at the number you provided on the form with further instructions on attaching the new VIN to your VT rebuilt car.

Vermont Anti-Theft Inspection

An authorized representative from the VT DMV will perform the anti-theft inspection for your rebuilt car. Call the VT DMV at (802) 828-2000 for more details about scheduling your anti-theft inspection, legally transporting your rebuilt vehicle to the inspection site, and paying the inspection fee.

During your rebuilt car inspection, the VT DMV agent will verify the car’s VIN and all bills of sale, and the title for the major parts that were used to rebuild your car. If your vehicle passes this verification process, the inspector will give you the required paperwork that proves your car passed the anti-theft inspection. You will only receive one of these forms, so don’t lose it! You will need this inspection form to apply for your Vermont rebuilt car title.

Vermont Safety Inspections

When your auto insurance provider declares your vehicle a total loss and you decide to rebuild it, you must also pass a VT safety inspection and possibly an emissions test before you can apply for another car title.

Before you will be eligible to take your car for a vehicle safety inspection, you must have proof of a valid Vermont auto insurance policy and registration. You can contact the VT DMV at (802) 828-2000 for more information about receiving a reconstructed vehicle registration. In some scenarios, you may receive a temporary registration. In other situations, you may be able to obtain a standard vehicle registration before you obtain your VT rebuilt car title.

After you have your car’s registration and auto insurance, you can schedule a Vermont safety inspection appointment with a VT DMV-approved inspection station. You can click here to find a VT DMV-approved inspection station.

At the vehicle inspection, you must present the following:

  • Proof of a completed vehicle inspection
  • Proof of registration and auto insurance
  • Pay the appropriate Vermont inspection fees:
    • Inspection sticker: $6

You will also be responsible for paying all other applicable costs that are specific to the inspection station, including but not limited to hourly rates and service charges. It’s a good idea to call the inspection station before your scheduled vehicle inspection appointment to ensure you have the proper paperwork and payment for the fees that may apply.

Your VT DMV inspector will check that your vehicle meets Vermont’s safety standards, and you may be required to have an emissions test performed. Once your vehicle passes the appropriate inspection(s), you must complete the necessary paperwork for you. You need to take this paper with you, including the VIN inspection paperwork, when you apply for your Vermont rebuilt car title.

What Major Vehicle Components Are Checked During a Vermont Safety Inspection?

During the Vermont salvage rebuilt vehicle inspection, your car’s major components are inspected, and these components  include the following:

  • Cowls
  • Transmission
  • Frames
  • Engines
  • Doors
  • Trunk lids
  • Front and rear fenders
  • Quarter panels

Why Are Vehicle Safety Inspections Performed in Vermont?

Vermont DMV performs vehicle safety inspections for two different reasons. First, the VT DMV wants to ensure that the proper repairs have been made to your salvage car to ensure it’s safe to operate on roads and highways. Second, these inspections are performed to ensure that your car is not stolen and was not repaired with stolen parts.

Vermont Vehicle Safety Inspection Failures

If your rebuilt vehicle fails the VT safety inspection, you won’t be able to obtain a rebuilt car title or operate the car on roads or highways until this issue is fixed. The inspector will tell you why your car failed inspection, and it is your responsibility to make further repairs. Once you make the requested repairs, your car will need to be re-inspected. Having your car re-inspected is often a time-sensitive manner.

How Do You Register a Salvaged Car in Vermont?

Salvaged cars can’t be registered in Vermont because they are not roadworthy. Even if you plan on rebuilding your salvage car, at this point in the process, it’s still a salvage vehicle, even if you have made the necessary repairs. You must pass the vehicle inspection(s) to receive a Vermont rebuilt car title, so you can register your car.

Vermont Vehicle Registration Fees

In Vermont, when you register your salvage car, you may be required to pay some of the following fees:

  • Passenger vehicle:
    • $76 for 1 year
    • $140 for 2 years
  • Electric-powered vehicle:
    • $74 for 1 year
    • $136 for 2 years
  • Motorcycle
    • $48 for 1 year
    • $96 for 2 years
  • Motor-driven cycle:
    • $30 for 1 year
    • $60 for 2 years
  • Vermont vehicle registration transfer: $25
  • Purchase and use tax: 6% of the purchase price of the vehicle’s average trade-in value (whichever is higher)

Full-time VT DMV branches accept money orders, credit and debit cards (MasterCard and Visa), personal checks, traveler’s checks, and cash. If you’re planning on heading to a Vermont mobile DMV branch, they do NOT accept cash payments.

Is There a Different Between a Vermont Salvage Title and a Vermont Rebuilt Car Title?

In Vermont, salvaged or total loss cars are extensively damaged to the point it would cost more to repair the car to its pre-damaged state than the car’s worth, which is known as the car’s actual cash value.

Rebuilt cars in Vermont were once salvaged cars but they have been repaired and passed the VT anti-theft and safety inspections. Rebuilt cars that pass these inspections are eligible for a VT rebuilt car title.

How is a Vermont Salvage Title Different from a Junk Title?

Salvage titles and junk titles are often confused because of their similarities. However, the one factor that sets these titles apart is significant. If your car has a salvage title, and you want to drive the car again, you can initiate the rebuilding process of the car, obtain a rebuilt car title, and you’re good to go!

If your car has a junk title, you don’t have the option to rebuild the car. Junk cars must be junked at a junkyard or scrapped at a scrap yard. These cars will never have a different title and can’t be rebuilt.

Who Buys Salvage Cars Near Me in Vermont?

If you want to sell your car to a salvage yard in Vermont, no problem. We recommended you choose a salvage yard that’s close to you. Keep in mind that your car has to be towed to the salvage yard because it’s illegal to operate these cars on roads and highways. Here’s a handful of Vermont salvage yards to help point you in the right direction.

Fairfax Salvage & Repair
228 River Rd.
Fairfax, VT 05454
(802) 849-6769
Monday – Saturday (7:30 AM – 5 PM)
Sunday (8 AM – 2 PM)

Brown’s Auto Salvage
170 Depot Ter
Bomoseen, VT 05732
(800) 660-4290
Monday – Friday (8 AM – 5 PM)
Saturday and Sunday (Closed)

Jeff’s Auto Salvage
19 Watkins Rd.
Milton, VT 05468
(802) 893-6345
Call for business hours

Jewett’s Salvage & Auto Repair
336 Warren Rd.
Eden VT, 05652
(802) 635-2649
Call for business hours

Am I Required to Get Auto Insurance for My Salvage Car in Vermont?

You can’t get auto insurance for salvage cars in Vermont. Cars that have a salvage title are not safe to operate, so you won’t be able to obtain an auto insurance policy. However, if you choose to rebuild your car, once your car passes the required inspections, your car will be eligible for a Vermont auto insurance policy.

Can I Salvage My Car Without a Title in Vermont?

No. You must have the car’s title to sell your salvage car. If you have misplaced the car’s title, you can apply for a duplicate car title. When you apply for your replacement car title, make sure you have proof of identity, such as your driver’s license or identification card. You can click here to view a list of documents that are accepted by the VT DMV.

You can apply for a Vermont duplicate car title at a VT DMV kiosk, by mail, or at a VT DMV branch. You can also call your local VT DMV office to ensure they handle duplicate car title applications before making the trip.

To obtain a VT duplicate car title, you need to do the following:

  • Complete a Duplicate Title Application (Form VT-04). If there are multiple owners, all owners are required to sign the title.
  • Pay the $35 duplicate car title fee
  • Submit your application or mail the required documents to the VT DMV’s main office in Montpelier at the following address:

Vermont DMV
120 State St.
Montpelier, VT 05603

You must provide the following information to receive your VT duplicate car title:

  • ID/driver’s license number
  • Make and year of your vehicle
  • The current odometer reading
  • The car’s title

After applying for your duplicate car title, the title will be mailed to you or the lien holder if you have a lien on your vehicle. If you have questions or concerns about the Vermont duplicate car title process, you can call the Vermont Registration/License Information Unit at (802) 828-2000.

Why Does a Vermont Rebuilt Title Affect My Car’s Value?

Having a rebuilt car title affects your car’s value because it’s a title that means your car has sustained extensive damage but has since been repaired. Having a rebuilt car title doesn’t mean your car doesn’t have value. However, since your car has sustained severe damage, you won’t be able to obtain a standard Vermont car title. Because of the damages your car sustained, the car’s value will decrease but your car won’t be worthless.

How Can I Get the Most Money for My Salvage Car in Vermont?

Yes, you can make money from selling your salvage car. However, the amount of money you can make depends on the selling method you choose. As long as you have the car’s title, you can choose any selling method that you think suits you best but make sure you’re willing to put in the time and effort that is required for the selling method you choose.

Selling Your Salvage Car to Another Individual (Private Sale)

Selling a salvage car in a private sale is the most common selling method individuals choose. Sometimes this selling option can take a while, but if you don’t mind waiting, this option shouldn’t be too frustrating.

Selling Your Salvage Car to a Salvage Yard or Junkyard

You can also sell your salvage car to a salvage yard or junkyard. This is the best option if playing the waiting game isn’t your style. If you want the money in your hand the same day, you’ll want to choose this selling option. A lot of the time, the junkyard will tow your car free of charge. Make sure you check with the junkyard you plan to use about their towing policy.

Selling Your Salvage Car for Parts

Parting out your car is another available option. While this selling method can be somewhat tedious, it can also be the most rewarding. When you part out your car, you remove the valuable parts and sell them. If you’re mechanically inclined, that’s okay. You can hire a mechanic to help you determine which parts are acceptable and remove them.

Selling Your Salvage Car As-Is

You can also sell your car as-is. This is the most logical and easiest option if you don’t want to spend the time and effort to repair the car or part it out. All you have to do is take pictures of the car from all angles, disclose that the car you’re selling is a salvage, and put it on a car selling or social media platform. You can also include the repairs that need to be made so potential buyers have a clear understanding of what it will take to get the car on the road again.

This selling method can take a while to get your salvage car sold or it can be a quick sale. It depends on who’s in the market to buy what you’re selling. Any repairs that must be made and other processes that are required to get the car running again will be the responsibility of the new car owner.

Factors to Consider When You’re Selling a Salvage Car in Vermont

Selling a salvage car can be difficult. First, you need to make sure you have the proper paperwork. Being prepared will make the selling process 1,000 times easier regardless of the selling method you choose.

As the car’s seller, you need to make sure you make it clear to potential buyers that your car is a salvage and take it one step further. Describe the car and give a short backstory, such as what the car was used for and how the damages occurred.

Buyers need to know exactly what they’re getting when they purchase your salvage car. Remember, your car has a salvaged title, but it still has value. Most of the time mechanics and DIY car enthusiasts are interested in restoring cars as a project they work on during the weekends, which is perfect for you!

The Importance of Disclosing Vehicle Information

Since you’re the car’s seller, you’re responsible for disclosing as much information about your salvage car as possible. As you’re aware, it’s best to disclose that your car is a salvage before telling potential buyers anything else about the car. Disclosing your car’s current title status is the only factor that makes selling a salvage car legal, so make sure you don’t forget to tell buyers this essential information. Failure to disclose vehicle information can leave you liable for penalties and fines. One of the best things you can do is give buyers peace of mind.

How Do You Apply for a Vermont Rebuilt Car Title?

Once your car passes the required inspections, you will be eligible to apply for a Vermont rebuilt car title. To apply for a VT rebuilt car title, you will need to submit the following:

  • A completed Rebuilt/Salvage Title Application (Form VT-017)
  • Proof that your vehicle passed the VT anti-theft and safety inspections
  • Payment for the $35 rebuilt title fee

For information about where to submit the above documents and payments, or questions about the rebuilt title process in Vermont, you can call the VT DMV at (802) 828-2000. After you complete this step, you’re done! Your car can now be legally driven on roads and highways. Congratulations!

How Long Does it Take to Receive a Rebuilt Title in Vermont?

It can take at least 1 week to receive your Vermont rebuilt car title. Keep in mind that the VT DMV has to review the information you provided on the application, approve it, and submit the information into their system. Your rebuilt car title will be mailed to the address you provided on the application. There may also be a rush application option to receive the rebuilt car title on the same day. Ask the VT DMV clerk if this is an option at their branch if you’re interested in this option.

You did it! Now you know the steps you need to take and how to sell your salvage car in Vermont.