What to Bring to the Dealership When Purchasing Your Used Car

When buying a used car, customers get swept up in the excitement of finding the right vehicle and often forget about the technicalities of the process.

There are several steps that need to be taken before completing a purchase, such as being approved for financing and test driving the car. Once a car has been selected, there’s paperwork to be added that is necessary to ensure the customer is fully aware of its costs and so the dealership can properly send in their paperwork to the DMV for registration. It can take the thrill of the search right out of used car shopping, but it doesn’t have to.

The Freedom

At DriveTime, we let customers make up their own order for the car shopping process. If a customer wants to be approved before they begin shopping, that is fine. We allow you to do this first so that there is no concern about finding the dream car and then not getting approved.

However, if someone would rather look around at our selection of used cars, trucks, vans or SUVs, that is also acceptable. We want the car shopper to make their car buying experience all about them.

The Requirements 

Once a car has been selected and a buyer is approved, there is a structure that sets in concerning the day of purchasing. To simplify the process, here is a checklist of items to bring when purchasing a vehicle from us (and most other dealerships):

  • State ID: This is not the day to leave one’s wallet at home. A valid driver’s license (or other accepted identification) must be shown at the dealership to purchase a car.
  • Proof of income: Either a bank statement or the stub of a paycheck will suffice. This verifies your employment and shows the dealership that monthly payments can be met.
  • Proof of residence: A buyer will need to offer a piece of mail from his current address in order to make the purchase. The best choices are a utility bill or your home’s lease or mortgage agreement. This shows that the monthly bills will reach the buyer at the address that was given in the paperwork.
  • Proof of insurance: This entails showing a valid auto insurance card. Insurance companies in some states allow car owners to make the transfer from the old vehicle to the new one in the few weeks after the car is purchased. Others may want to be alerted of the change immediately, and you will need to call the company while still at the dealership before driving off the lot. It is best to check with the insurance company before going to the dealership. If a customer currently has no insurance on a car, this too will require a phone call from the lot to set up insurance before a purchase can be finalized. DriveTime can help you obtain insurance if you don’t already have a provider.
  • Title for trade-in: If a trade-in is taking place, don’t forget to bring the certificate of title for the vehicle. Without it, the process will slow down while the dealership contacts the DMV for proof of ownership on the car.

Preparing for your trip to the dealership shouldn’t take long and can save you hours at the dealership or prevent you from having to make multiple trips. Get organized first, then enjoy the rest of your car buying experience!

  23 Comments

  1. Marie   •  

    Does anyone know if a paystubs alone with my address on it is enough for proof of residence and income?

    • DriveTime   •  

      Hi Marie – Once you are ready to visit our dealership, we will require that you bring documentation to confirm your identity, as well as documentation that will allow us to verify the accuracy of the information provided during the online approval process (proof of residency, proof of income, proof of insurance, etc.) For a list of the closest DriveTime locations, you may visit our dealership locator page at: https://www.drivetime.com/dealership/find. This page will provide you with the dealership contact information, a list of inventory, and the option to schedule a visit.

  2. Thressa Norfleet   •  

    I only have a state ID will i still be able to get a car.I have check stubs and i was going to get the insurance from drive time

  3. Scott   •  

    This is a great list of things to bring to the dealership in order to make the process faster. I remember I spent hours waiting for the dealership to do all the paperwork when I bought my first car. However, this was only because I had to keep calling my parents to have them fax and email certain information over.

  4. Manny   •  

    Im renting a rm and paying cash i have 2 stubs cause i have 2 jobs with the address on it and might state id is this enough to get a car

    • DriveTime   •  

      When you visit your local dealership, make sure you bring a valid driver’s license, recent proof of income such as pay stubs, proof of residency such as a recent utility or phone bill and proof of insurance.

  5. Dayane lara   •  

    What are other forms of id?

    • DriveTime   •  

      When you visit your local dealership, make sure you bring a valid driver’s license, recent proof of income such as pay stubs, proof of residency such as a recent utility or phone bill and proof of insurance. For more information on your appointment with the dealership, you can take a look at our video regarding next steps here: https://youtu.be/SvHUySlQJKw

  6. Bre   •  

    Lost both id n license can I take my passport

    • DriveTime   •  

      Hi, Bre – When you visit your local dealership, you can bring recent proof of income such as pay stubs, proof of residency such as a recent utility or phone bill and proof of insurance. For more information on your appointment with the dealership, you can take a look at our video regarding next steps.

  7. Cony   •  

    I want to buy cash used car, but I don’t have insurance, and my license is expired. Can I buy a car from dealer shop?

    • DriveTime   •  

      Hi, Cony – Great question! In order to purchase a vehicle you will need to have a valid Driver’s License and insurance. Thank you!

  8. Annie   •  

    Hi I’m ederly and I need a car I don’t drive or have driving licence can i bring my neighbor with me who will be driving me to the doctor and store she has licence and get a car.

    • Customer Relations   •  

      Hello Annie,

      Thank you for reaching out.

      In this situation, since your neighbor is the only one with a license between the two of you, she would need to be signed onto the contract as a buyer. Due to the fact that you do not have a driver’s license, we would not be able to approve you by yourself.

      If you have any further questions regarding a potential vehicle purchase, it would be best for you to reach out to our sales team at (888) 418-1212.

      Thank you,
      Jacob – Customer Relations

  9. Humberto   •  

    hello,

    Do I need my tax returns if ever, to purchase a used car?

    Humberto

    • Customer Relations   •  

      Hello Humberto.

      Thank you for taking the time to reach out to us! While they may not be needed in your case, I encourage you to check with your local DriveTime dealership. They will be the best to assist you with this question.

      Thank You,

      Kaitlyn – Customer Relations

  10. Veniece Morrow   •  

    Hello do you guys accept customers with a driving permit?

    • Customer Relations   •  

      Hello Veniece,

      Thank you for taking the time to reach out to us. For the purchase of a vehicle, we do require a valid driver’s license. If you have any questions regarding our approval process, please let us know at (888)418-1212.

      Thank You,

      Kaitlyn – Customer Relations

  11. Rod   •  

    We are fairly recent transplants to California from Missouri. My wife and I both still have valid Missouri drivers licenses but not California licenses yet since taking off work to get a new license just hasn’t worked out yet. The online approval said we were approved and we have everything else we need to bring in but before we fight the ridiculous California traffic, I need to know if our Missouri drivers licenses will work or if we have to wait until we have California licenses?

    • Customer Relations   •  

      Hello Rod,

      Thank you for reaching out! Our California dealerships should be able to accept your Missouri licenses. Neither of those states should have restrictions regarding out of state purchasing or operating of a vehicle. Please let us know if you have other questions.

      Thank You,

      Kaitlyn – Customer Relations

      • Rod   •  

        My wife called the Fresno location and this is from her: I think it’s misleading that your website says that it’s possible to get a second car loan. The pre-approval thing approved me but then when I called the Fresno location to double check what I needed to bring with me, I was told that I couldn’t get a second car until a year from when I bought my first one. The location that I bought my Jetta, the South Lindbergh location in St Louis had told me to come back in after August and we could buy a second vehicle for my husband; that they could get it approved after six months (I bought my Jetta in February of this year). We moved and still need a second vehicle but now we are being told something different. It seems like there should be one clear policy that everyone knows about so as to not be misleading. I’ve never missed a payment or been a problem so it’s surprising that I was treating like this. It’s disappointing.
        Casandra Niccole Richardson

        • Customer Relations   •  

          Hello Rod,

          Thank you for taking the time to provide her feedback. In regards to approvals for secondary loans, it is correct that an approval can be obtained a year after the initial loan. This can be altered by the addition of a cosigner, if applicable. I do greatly apologize that this confusion has taken place. Unfortunately, when it comes to approvals or secondary approvals, there are many factors in play.

          Please let us know if there is anything else that we can do or if you have any further questions.

          Thank You,

          Kaitlyn – Customer Relations

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