Documents to Collect When Buying a Used Car in Nigeria

There are documents to check when buying a used car anywhere in the world. Nigeria is not an exception for countries where particular car documents should be collected. On this note, this article highlights all documents to collect when buying a used car in Nigeria.

If you do not know the right documents to check when buying a used car, suspend the purchase. The toughest scenario is when you’re purchasing a car online from a stranger. Who knows, you could be issued a stolen car. And, the only way to find out is to confirm using the original car documents.

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This piece identifies documents to collect when buying a used car in Nigeria so far it threads Nigerian roads. Do not omit any line or paragraph if you must know all the appropriate documents for Nigerian used cars.

  1. Vehicle Proof of Ownership

As one of the documents to collect when buying a used car in Nigeria, it helps to know if truly the seller owns the car. It must be original with clear prints of the details of the seller.

documents to collect when buying a used car in Nigeria

If you do not know what an original proof of ownership document looks like, suspend the purchase. A fake proof of ownership document can possibly land an innocent person in jail. Where the seller is unable to issue this document, do not make any payment.

  1. Road Worthiness Certificate

This document lasts between 6 months and 1 year in Nigeria. It is one of the very vital documents to collect when buying a used car in Nigeria. This is because it reveals the state of the worthiness of the vehicle for Nigerian roads. If the original copy issued by a used car seller is expired, you can renew the certificate at any testing station.

The entire process will take just a day. That is, it’ll be ready the same day you apply unless the ministry features lazy workers. To get a new copy, the required documents will include ID card, vehicle license, insurance doc, etc. It’s recommended to have this document at all times to avoid extortion from road agents.

  1. Number Plate Allocation

This is one of the documents for Nigerian used cars and it looks like a receipt. The Nigerian police never fail to request for this document while checking car papers. It is one of the documents to collect when buying a used car in Nigeria and is commonly called ‘plate number’. Every car owner is expected to have an original copy to avoid having his/her car impounded.

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A recent study holds that most Nigerian car owners do not have the number plate allocation papers. This is increasing in states like Lagos, Port Harcourt, and a few others. If the used car seller is unable to provide this document, it can be sorted easily in any Nigerian state, especially South-South states. As long as the car ownership is authentic, swear an affidavit in the court pertaining to number plate allocation. Issue the affidavit whenever any agency requests for it.

  1. CMR

The CMR (Centralized Motor Registry) is another of the documents for Nigerian used cars to collect. This is a document mainly targeted at curbing the level of crime in Nigeria. If the car seller does not own a valid copy, question them thoroughly. Moreover, it is not a document that is compulsorily owned by most car owners. The chances that the seller did not also apply for it are high. As a willing buyer, it is recommended that you get a CMR for yourself to avoid harassment from any agency.

  1. Vehicle License

This license is what allows a car to be eligible for roads in Nigeria. It is one of the car documents in Nigeria to obtain used cars and avoid embarrassments. If a used car seller is unable to provide this document, there is a problem. And, if a seller issues an expired vehicle license, renew before putting the car on the road.

  1. Insurance

Not every car owner in Nigeria insure their vehicle and the seller might just another one of them. Getting insurance papers is not so compulsory because you could do so yourself. If the used car seller owns a running one, find. Just get it from him and continue or switch to an insurance package that most interests you.

  1. Tinted Permit

This is only necessary for used cars with tinted glasses. Request for a tinted permit because it’s the document that allows the car to be on the road with tinted glasses. If it does not interest you to continue with the tinted design, you might want to get rid of it. Again, if the used car is tinted, do not hesitate to obtain the copy of the original document before putting the car on the road.

  1. Car Purchase Receipt

Anything purchased is usually accompanied by a receipt. One of the many things that compulsorily requires a receipt is a car to prove ownership. If there are no valid receipts, the chances that the car is stolen is high. Moreover, this is the document with the most problem because receipts can be forged. If it’s possible, contact the mentioned company on the receipt to verify the car purchase. Once the verification is done, you are free to make payments.

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Read Also: Cheap Maintainance Cars in Nigeria.

  1. Stamped Customs Documents

If you should miss any document here, don’t miss the customs document. But then, do not hesitate to collect other documents. The information on the customs document must match with everything you find about the car and the owner. If you did not know, all cars that come into Nigeria get cleared by the Nigerian Customs before hitting the road. Not having this document is a sign that the car is stolen. Avoid any mess by getting this particular document from the seller. Again, ensure that the papers are real. If possible, confirm from appropriate the agency even after the car purchase to avoid problems.

  1. Previous Car Purchase Receipt

There are cases where the car must have been previously sold. In such a case, request for the receipt issued to the current seller by the previous owner.

  1. Change of Ownership Doc

If the car was previously sold, request for the change of ownership papers. This shows that the previous owner acknowledges the car to the owner you’re buying from. This will not apply if it is the first time the car is being sold as a used car in Nigeria. After this, you can then go through the process of applying for a change of ownership form to state that the car is now yours.

  1. Police Report

Another of the documents to collect when buying a used car in Nigeria is the police report. This report contains details such as the name of the vehicle owner, engine number, number plate details, and some vital info. Look out for the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN).

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What to Do After Buying a Nigerian Used Car

After buying a used car whether Nigerian used or foreign used, do the following:

  • Run a final general check on the car.
  • Check the plug and change, if necessary.
  • Assess the tires and replace tires if they are too worn out.
  • Replace the oil and check for oil leakage.
  • Confirm the functionality of the breaks.
  • Visit the necessary license ministry(s) in your state to renew or register for new car papers and licenses.
  • Obtain a change of ownership paper.
  • Insure the car.

These are all you need to do for the car to be ready for Nigerian roads. Meanwhile, do not immediately take the car on a long distance. Give it a few days, pay attention to the performance and handling.

Final Thoughts

Whatever car you’re buying must be one of the reliable vehicles in Nigeria.

Having seen the right documents to collect when buying a used car in Nigeria, we hope you don’t forget any. Most importantly, ensure that all documents are original. If possible, confirm from the proper agency to avoid running into trouble.

Note: Read how to clear a car from Nigerian port easily.

Meanwhile, is it a Tokunbo car? Documents for Tokunbo cars quite vary from documents for Nigerian used cars. Read on documents to collect for Tokunbo vehicles to avoid issues with the Nigerian Police.

Note, some of these documents expire and renewal must be done after expiration. Finally, when you get these documents, keep them very safe and neat. Whenever you intend to sell the car, a willing buyer will request for them.

If you are interested in importing a car from the US, read the steps to import a car from US to Nigeria.