A bicycle bill of sale is a document used to prove that a person purchased a bicycle from another individual for a specific amount of money. The document serves as a physical record of the transaction, protecting the new owner in the event they are questioned about rightful ownership of the bike. This is especially important should the new owner attempt to sell the bike in the future.
Because bicycles do not have to adhere to the more intensive regulations that motor vehicles do, the selling process is rather simple once an interested buyer has been found. However, those beginning the selling process have work to do if they want to maximize the amount of money they can sell their bike for.
Look for any obvious wear or broken parts on the bicycle. If they’re easy to fix, repairing them can improve the price the bike can sell for. For heavily damaged bicycles, selling it for a discounted price “as-is” is the recommended approach due to the time, effort, and money required for big repair jobs. Of course, this all depends on the desirability of the bicycle. High-end bicycles may very well be worth putting in serious work if it increases the final selling point by hundreds or even thousands of dollars.
Is the bike an antique?
If so, leave it alone. Unless you run a professional restoration shop, the bike shouldn’t be touched. Professional collectors often prefer the bike in its original condition, and the decision of restoration is best left to those with significant experience in valuing antiques.
Figuring out what to charge for your used bicycle is rather simple, and can be done in a matter of minutes. One can use the links below to see the recommended selling price, and then adjust that price depending on the condition of the bike. Bicycles that are basically new should be sold close to the highest-priced listings, and the reverse situation applies if the bike is very old.
- Bicycle Blue Book (Value Guide) – Enter the year, brand, model, and condition of the bike to get the average price range.
- Checkaflip – Uses current and previously sold eBay items to show the average selling price of specific items, including bicycles.
Prior to taking pictures of the bike for the listing(s), give it a wash or simply wipe down the bike to remove dirt and other detritus. When preparing to take photos, set the scene by placing the bike in a distraction-free environment. The buyer isn’t interested in your garage or shiny car – they want to see the bike, and the bike only. Also pay attention to the lighting – glare from light bulbs or the sun should be kept to a minimum. The goal should be to provide basic, clear photos of the bike that allow the buyer to determine whether it is right for them. There are several online marketplaces that can be used for advertising the bicycle. The following is a list of a few popular options:
- eBay – They only charge a fee when the item sells.
- Facebook Marketplace – Free to list.
- Craigslist – A local marketplace for selling the bicycle in-person. Completely free.
Secondary Option – sell it to a brick and mortar shop
A quick search on Google can provide the seller with a list of nearby pawn shops or used sporting equipment stores. While convenient, be prepared for a low-ball offer, as they’ll need to flip it and sell the bike for a higher cost to their customers. This is a great option if the online listing hasn’t attracted many (or any) interested buyers within 30 or 60 days of posting it.
Once an interested party makes an offer to purchase the bicycle, you should begin drafting the bill of sale. However, don’t sign it until the buyer delivers the funds in full; this prevents fraud and is especially important for online transactions. Both the seller and buyer will need to sign the bill of sale. Customarily the completed form is kept by the buyer, as they can retain it for proof that they are the true owner of the bike. Unless you plan on selling it separately, provide the buyer with any documentation, accessories, stands, and any other tools or parts that originally came with the bike.
Overall, the process follows these steps:
- The bike is examined for damage and repaired (if needed).
- Seller researches what their bike is currently selling for.
- Seller lists the bike online.
- Seller and buyer negotiate and settle on a price.
- Buyer pays the seller for the bicycle.
- Seller drafts the bill of sale.
- Both parties sign their name (with eSign or by hand).
- The buyer keeps the original bill of sale; the seller can make a copy for themselves if they wish.