Can You Buy a Car Without a License?
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Purchasing a new-to-you vehicle can be a fun and exciting time. You research different makes and models to find the one that fits you best, select the color and options you want, sign the papers, and off you go.
But buying a car can also come with several challenges along the way. Maybe you faced a difficult financial situation in the past, lowering your credit score and making it problematic to secure financing.
Or you might have been in an accident that subsequently raised your insurance premiums, lessening the amount of money you have to spend on a monthly car payment.
But what if, for one reason or another, you don't have a driver's license? Though a rare situation, no law prevents those without a driver's license from buying a car.
Nevertheless, buying a car without a license requires you to take specific steps and adhere to certain rules to work your way through the process.
Let's look at the details of buying a car without a license.
The steps to buying a car
Typically, purchasing a car entails several steps before you have the keys in hand.
Though not precisely the same for everyone, usually, these individual requirements apply.
First, you have to decide on the make and model that suits your needs and budget best.
This process can consist of reading reviews, visiting manufacturer websites, or performing additional research.
Once you've decided on a particular vehicle comes the question of buying new or used. While each option has its pluses and minuses, buying used saves you several thousands of dollars.
After that comes the task of locating the specific car you want. Shift has hundreds of makes and models on our easy-to-use website. You can browse, compare, schedule a test drive and even apply for financing, all with a click of a button from the comfort of your home.
Taking a test drive, while not necessary, gives you a feel for the driving performance and interior quality before deciding to move forward.
For the reassurance that a particular vehicle's in excellent condition, a pre-purchase inspection is always a good idea.
If you decide to go ahead with a purchase and want to finance, securing an auto loan helps you pay for your vehicle over time.
Once you work out those details, performing the administrative tasks of registration with your local DMV, obtaining a title, and paying applicable taxes completes the process.
Though relatively straightforward, the steps to buying a car are many and require attention to detail.
Though buying a used car has the potential to save you thousands of dollars, who can you trust for a quality vehicle at an excellent price? Whether you're after a supercharged sports car or a full-size truck, with Shift's expertise and experience selling used vehicles, you can rest assured your used car purchase will be good to go from the moment you take delivery. At Shift, certified mechanics perform extensive 150-point inspections on every car sold, and you get a free Carfax report for the ultimate in transparency. And Shift offers fair, no-haggle prices driven by powerful machine learning algorithms and tons of data.
Buying a car without a license
Since driving requires you to have a license, buying a car without one may seem illogical.
But specific situations require buying a car without a license, and it is, in fact, possible.
Perhaps you're in the process of learning to drive but don't have a license yet. Or maybe you're buying a vehicle for your business. Or you could be on the hunt for a collector car that you don't intend to drive.
No matter the reason, though no law prevents you from buying a car without a license, you could face several challenges along the way.
The challenges of buying a car without a license
If you find yourself in a scenario that requires buying a car without a license, many speedbumps could lie in your path.
Required by most states, car insurance is an essential aspect of owning a vehicle. Not only does an insurance policy keep you financially protected if you're in an accident, but it also safeguards the drivers around you from unforeseen expenses.
A problem with buying a car without a license is insurance companies usually require your driver's license number when you apply. However, some carriers are more lenient and will insure a vehicle bought by an unlicensed driver as long as you provide them with the correct information. The main thing a car insurer needs to know is who the licensed primary driver of the vehicle will be to determine the particulars of a policy and its pricing. You'll still appear as an excluded driver on the policy.
The next area that may present an issue is registering your vehicle. No matter what state you live in, the vehicle owner must register it with the Department of Motor Vehicles before anyone can drive it on roads and highways. Here's where a significant hurdle arises since you need a valid driver's license to register a car in your name. So, in essence, there's no way of buying a car without a license where you plan to drive the vehicle legally on public roads.
So, in short, while you can buy a car without a driver's license, you won't be able to register it in your name.
Next up are the obstacles to obtaining financing when you're buying a car without a license. Usually, a photo ID is required to apply for a car loan. Though there are forms of photo identification other than a driver's license, not having one may set off an alarm with a lender. And although a lender might be willing to work with low credit borrowers or people with set budgets, not having a driver's license is something they might shy away from.
With so many administrative tasks related to buying a car, whether paperwork or obtaining financing, wouldn't it be nice visiting a one-stop-shop where they take care of everything for you? It's reassuring to know you can buy from Shift, who are with you every step of the way. We'll process all necessary paperwork, including DMV forms, title, transfer, and registration. And when you need to finance, Shift works with a network of trusted lenders who compete for your business, so you get the best deal on financing.
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Buying a car without a license in summary
If you don't have a driver's license and need to buy a car, you can. Maybe you're a collector who wants a vintage classic to park in your garage and wash and wax and keep for years to come. Or, if you're a business owner and need additional vehicles to fill out the fleet, buying a car without a license also makes sense.
While buying a car without a license is possible, many obstacles exist along the way.
With the challenge of obtaining insurance coverage when you're an unlicensed driver, you might not be able to get a policy required by the state in which you reside.
Similarly, if you buy a car without a license, registering it with your local DMV could prove difficult and result in your vehicle not being road legal.
And if you're like most car buyers and need financing, not having a driver's license could create a barrier while applying for an auto loan.
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April 15, 2022
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