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Old 04-26-2021, 08:24 PM   #1
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2006 25' Safari FB SE
1972 23' Safari
Houston , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2009
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Help! Title registration and transfer hell in Texas

So I bought a 72 Safari two years ago in Tennessee from an individual a hour from Memphis. Paid by check and was given an envelope that had the title in it and a transfer form with previous owners signature in it with instructions for me (the new owner) to sign in the form. We pulled the trailer back to Texas and I began restoration. It seems like in COVID times now getting title transfers is a long long process. Hereís the problem. When the young couple bought the trailer in 2011 they never re-registered the title from Oregon to Tennessee. They did have a notary stamp it there but none of that seems to matter in Texas. After scheduling an in-person appointment at the Texas DMV (a two month process) I was told that though I had clear proof of ownership they could not directly transfer the title of issue a new one. I would have to get a bonded title, have the trailer inspected by a police inspector and after that schedule another appointment to get the bond application and then buy title bond insurance $$$ and if approved then I can go across town to the county courthouse and finally (another 2 month wait for appointment) get the title transferred and the register to get license plates. I then went back to the original DMV office to argue the issue of the bonded title, which is like a temporary title for a period of time so if someone reports that this trailer is theirs then they can lay claim to it during this period.
I argued my case, ďHere is the title, here is the signature transferring it to the second owner and here is the bill Of sale to me with my check copy and signed form transferring to me.Ē
I am at my wits end on this and think the requirement for a bonded title is a waste of time and money. Itís a 72 Airstream for Godís sake! Anybody got a clue around this mess? Iím almost ready to drive to another state where I can walk in and get it stamped a get a Nevada plate on the back.
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Old 04-26-2021, 09:01 PM   #2
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2017 25' International
West Lake Hills , Texas
Join Date: Dec 2020
Posts: 196
Do you have any valid title? Registration doesnít matter in Texas as far as I can tell.

We bought a used trailer from a dealer in Virginia. We just happened upon while visiting Richmond. My first try to transfer the title in Texas I had some deficiencies: 1) weigh the trailer, 2) Texas inspection (validating the VIN as all they did on my trailer), 3) previous title.

I had the temporary registration from Virginia, a paper trail of transfers of ownership, and the last official title which was a Florida title (but didnít know that).

Second trip to the DMV I brought everything. There was some confusion for a while but that was because I didnít understand that all the paperwork (including the bill of sale) showing the transfer of ownership was not a transfer of title. Theyíre not synonymous. When I produced the Florida title they said ďyes, thatís what we need, and why are you such an dolt?Ē

I canít remember exactly what the original title showed but I donít believe that it showed a transfer to me. I could be wrong, though.

1. In what county are you attempting the title transfer? Iím in Travis county, the mothership of the DMV bureaucracy.
2. Registration and title are two completely different things. Do you have an Oregon title or a Tennessee title in your possession?

Finally, you may need professional help getting this done. There are companies that will walk your title transfer through the process. IMO, the fee might be worth it in your situation.

Texasís process is intended to prevent stolen vehicles from gaining a valid title. It is frustrating though.

If you do go it alone book appointments about a week apart for the next few weeks. You can cancel them if needed. I ended up cancelling the last two appointments I had scheduled. And book the appointments for early in the day before the inevitable crunch at the end of the day begins.

The internal manual that the DMV uses is available online. The last version Iíve seen was from January 2021. It will spell out everything that the bureaucrats are looking for.

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Old 05-09-2021, 07:56 AM   #3
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2006 25' Safari FB SE
1972 23' Safari
Houston , Texas
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 1,321
Images: 7
Thanks Donald for your advice. Three times Iíve gone in after long waits ti transfer and register. The TDMV handles the title process and wants me to do Bond Title and inspection. Then the County courthouse processes the title all and registration. I just think I need to go to a small county with the Oregon title and my transfer doc from the seller, copy of payment check and the keys and manuals and plead my case. Owned this 72 Safari for 2years now and put $10k into restoring her and this seems pretty silly.
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