Selling a Motorcycle You Still Owe On

Selling a motorcycle with a lien requires preparation.

Selling a motorcycle with a lien requires preparation.

In some situations it could be in your best interest to sell a motorcycle that you still owe on. Selling a motorcycle that still has a lien on the title will take some additional time and effort on your part, though you can sell once you remove the lien. You also want to take the extra time to research the motorcycle market in your area to find the best price for your vehicle.

Selling After You Pay Off the Loan

Contact your lender. Before you can sell your motorcycle you will have to get the lender to release the lien on the vehicle. This means you will have to pay off any remaining loan amount. Contact your lender and ask exactly how much remains on your loan.

Pay off the loan. Write a check to the lender for the remaining balance on the loan. Ask the lender to send you a lien release as quickly as possible.

Get a new title. Once the lender has sent the lien release on the motorcycle, you can then take that release with your title to your state department of motor vehicles and ask for a new, clean title.

Transfer the title on the motorcycle. After you have the new title with no lien listed, you can then sell it to the new buyer. Transfer the title over to the buyer when he has paid you the agreed amount.

Selling Before You Have Paid Off the Loan

Contact your lender if you need to use the funds from the motorcycle sale to pay off the loan. The lender will likely want you and the buyer to come to the bank in person before you can complete the sale.

Go to the bank. Once you and the buyer have agreed on a price, meet at the bank or the lender location at the same time and talk to a loan officer. Make sure the buyer brings money to cover the agreed-upon price.

Transfer the title. Use the sales funds to pay off the loan and asked the bank to transfer the title over directly to the purchaser.

Items you will need

  • Motorcycle title
  • Lien release


  • Clean your motorcycle before you try to sell it. A simple wash and polish can make your motorcycle appear much more enticing to a potential owner and bring you a higher sales price.

About the Author

Roger Thorne is an attorney who began freelance writing in 2003. He has written for publications ranging from "MotorHome" magazine to "Cruising World." Thorne specializes in writing for law firms, Web sites, and professionals. He has a Juris Doctor from the University of Kansas.

Photo Credits

  • Jupiterimages/ Images