Trying to Rid Myself of a Camper -- Please Help


Old 07-30-16, 08:47 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Philadelphia, PA, USA
Posts: 181
Trying to Rid Myself of a Camper -- Please Help

We’ve had a camper that’s been parked in a NJ campground since we bought it in 1998. We’re the second owners – the original owners parked it there in 1983., so it hasn’t moved in 33 years.

This year, we’ve decided that due to rising costs and more limited time, this will be our last year camping. However, newer campground rules state that if you sell a trailer more than 10 years old, it cannot remain in the campground. Therefore, transfer of ownership to anyone there is out of the question.

So, we decided we would donate it to charity. After all, many of them claim to come out and take any sort of vehicle, including boats and RVs. Well, it turns out not to be true, because I was informed by a woman at one of the charities on the hush-hush that when it comes to “older” RVs, usually the cost of towing it is the same or higher than what they can resell it for, so they “pick and choose” the ones they will take.

I then contacted a couple of salvage yards in the area. None were interested, but one suggested the Municipal Utilities Authority would take it. Turns out they’ll take it alright – providing I tow it to THEM and pay a $1,000 fee.

Someone suggested putting an ad on CraigsList to just give it away, which I did. I got about 10 responses, including someone from out of state who knows a homeless family that can use it.

This, unfortunately, is causing my wife to get nervous. Let me tell you what happened about 15 years ago:

We had an old ’64 Cadillac. The motor was going, but the body was ok. We called a salvage place who towed it and gave us $200 for it. Considering we paid $500 a year earlier, it wasn’t a bad price.

Well, several months go by, and we get a call from the police telling us to remove our abandoned car from the city streets (about 5 miles away from where we live) or else we will be fined. We go out to the address they gave us, and there’s the Caddy, doors unlocked, and the glove compartment has the keys, his form (with out info on it) as well as the signed title. We never found out how it got there or what happened.

Back to today – as a result of that incident 15 years ago, my wife is apprehensive. I’m an idiot, and she’s concerned that if I don’t do this transaction right, bad things can happen. For instance, if I give it away, and something happens while they’re towing it, we may be held legally responsible.

I admit, I know nothing about towing a trailer, so I have no idea if the recipient knows what they’re doing or not. I don’t want to see someone hurt or even killed just trying to do a good thing for someone.

All we want is to be free and clear of this thing with as little stress as possible. Is there something I haven’t thought of? If I give it away, what do I need to do to Cover My ___? I gladly welcome any comments, suggestions, or thoughts.
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Old 07-30-16, 09:17 AM
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Wet side of Washington state.
Posts: 18,399
I have no idea of what the laws/rules are in your state but in Washington the seller of a vehicle is required to file a "Seller's Report of Sale" with the Department of Licensing within five days of the sale. The buyer is likewise required to transfer title within (as I recall) fifteen days or else a fine will be assessed, said fine increasing daily.

The Seller's Report of Sale is to protect the seller from the problem that you stated in regard to your old Cadillac.

I wish you well in getting rid of this albatross. The unfortunate thing is that with the world-wide depression in the scrap metal markets no one even wants to take something mostly made of steel. The cost to demolish is often more than the scrap metal value.
Old 07-30-16, 09:20 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: USA
Posts: 43,823
No expert but I'd think having a receipt from the buyer or new owner that states they now have possession would suffice. If the trailer tittle needs to be notarized, get that paper notarized also.
Old 07-30-16, 09:23 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 653
I'd meet the person at the DMV or a tile company who will give both of you a bill of sale & transfer the title for you. I'd insist that the new owners pay for title transfer. At that point you have paperwork & assurance that its transferred out of your name .... legally. When doing this, sell it for $1. Its a "sale" & its less expensive for the buyer paying taxes on the purchase/licence/registration etc.

Edit: Sell it for $1 because if you give it to someone, (I think here in La) they will have to pay blue book value taxes. If they buy it, they pay state sales taxes on the purchase price of $1.
You will just need to ask someone about that in your jurisdiction.

Hopefully, this will help.

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