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What is a bill of sale?

A Bill of sale is a document that legally records a transfer of the ownership of personal property. It cannot be used when performing services. If services are involved (such as graphic designing or business consulting), you should use a general contract for services.

What can I sell using a bill of sale?

Bills of sale can be used to sell a vairety of things, including:

  • an aircraft

  • a boat

  • horses

  • pets

  • furniture

  • mobile phones

  • other personal goods, eg a bicycle or appliances

  • personal goods to a private individual

Residential property cannot be sold using a bill of sale. Bear in mind that, whilst you can sell most things using this document, certain objects will need a specific type of bill of sale. For example, if you are selling a vehicle, you will need a vehicle-specific document, such as our Vehicle bill of sale. This is because special provisions need to be filled out, such as noting your registration number, car model and entering a valid vehicle identification number (or VIN).

Why do I need a bill of sale?

You will require this document If you are buying goods from a private individual and want to ensure you have a record of the sale. This will avoid any disputes which may arise in the future regarding the sale. Anyone selling or buying a personal item without a warranty or guarantee can use this bill of sale.

The Bill of sale expressly states that the goods are ‘sold as seen’ so there can be no argument over the condition of the goods in the future. Indicating on the bill of sale that you have sold your personal property ‘as is’ protects you as a seller if the buyer encounters any problems with the item after purchase. For example, if a person buys an automobile from you and it breaks down after he or she drives away, you are not responsible for the repairs or damages.

What's included in the bill of sale?

The bill of sale records everything a buyer and seller would need to know during this process. At a minimum a bill of sale should include: 

  • the identities of the buyer and seller

  • the nature and description of goods being sold

  • the agreed price

  • the date of sale

  • the condition of the goods

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