Un-Titled Casita - Fiberglass RV

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Old 08-21-2008, 09:16 AM   #1
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Trailer: Casita 16 ft
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About two years ago I purchased a 1991 Casita without a title. The previous owner purchased it without one also. Here is what I have tried in order to get a title. 1) I contacted the Casita Mfg to find out who original purchaser was but they don't keep records after ten years. 2) I contacted the SC motor vehicle dept to see who it was last registered to...no record of registration. 3) I contacted local law authority to check the US National database for stolen vehicles...It's not there so it's not been stolen. I am out of ideas on how to get a title. Can anyone offer some "reasonable" ideas on how I can get it titled? If I could locate a "Totaled and Trashed" unit maybe I could transfer the data plate ????? Help me Please.

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Old 08-21-2008, 09:22 AM   #2
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Surely the SC motor vehicle dept has some method to generate a new title. People lose titles in house fires, etc. and there has to be a system to fix the lack of a title.

Tom Trostel

1980 Bigfoot 17' & former owner of 1973 Compact Jr
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Old 08-21-2008, 09:28 AM   #3
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Tom, A title can be easily replaced "IF" the vehicle was currently registered or had a "Title Only" on record. Neither of these were done.
"Title only" is when you want to get the state's specific title in your name but not register it for highway use at that time. IN SC we have 45 days to transfer ownership or pay a stiff penalty.
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Old 08-21-2008, 10:36 AM   #4
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There has to be a way in your state. In the fine state of Warshington, here are the several options:
1. Find a friendly towing company, have it "impounded" and "buy" it from them at the auction. In this state that gives you a clean title.
2. Do what I did on my Compact that I knowingly purchased w/o a title. Go to the local DMV/Licensing office- research, find out there are "No Records Found" (which you did), then the state of WA issues you a 3 year "Regristration Only Title" (which means that the original owner has 3 years to reclaim it and pay you for storage and upgrades). This is also a legal document and the vehicle/trailer can be sold with it and a notorized bill of sale (the new owner does not start over on the time period either, the 3 year period starts only once). I am sure there is basically the same process in every state.
There are other processes also, but I won't get into them, (I used to own an Auto Wrecking yard, and did some other things also....... ) Larry
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Old 08-21-2008, 12:02 PM   #5
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Thank You Larry, That will be worth trying and I will try it. I just finished sending a detailed e-mail to the South Carolina DMV here explaining what I have already done and asking them for suggestions or help. If they can't help I will look for you suggested solution or any others that may come my way.
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Old 08-21-2008, 02:35 PM   #6
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When we came to Texas in 1968 we moved from New Yprk state. They are a "No Title" (registration only) state.

We could not find the registration for my 1954 Austin Healy 100 and they said no problem, we'll just issue you a title if I would swear that I was the true owner. Filled out their form, swore before a notary public, and TX issued me a title.
CD and Joyce Smith - Lily, Violet, and Rose
1999 Casita 17' SD - "The Little Egg"
2007 Escalade - 6.2L V8 - 6L80E Trans - 3.42 Diff
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Old 08-21-2008, 04:49 PM   #7
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Earlier today I sent an e-mail to the Sc DMV asking for their help and I recieved a reply from them a little while ago......They can't help me.

Mr Smith, I wish it were that easy here in SC. Maybe I need to move to Texas for a few weeks..Hummmmm
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Old 08-21-2008, 06:04 PM   #8
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I wonder if your state has a process similar to Georga? If I remember correctly, a member here bought an '80s vintage Fiber Stream that had an old fashioned serial number (like Mine) and not a modern 17 digit VIN. Georgia INSISTED that it had to have a VIN, and The Fiber Stream Company didn't show up on their computer, so their DMV titled it as a "Home Built" unit and issued a new VIN as if it were just built.
Frederick - The Scaleman
1978 Fiber Stream 16 named "Eggstasy" & 1971 Compact Jr. named "Boomerang"
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Old 08-21-2008, 09:41 PM   #9
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Since you've done all the good faith stuf (keep all the papers, just in case), what I would do in your shoes is consult with a couple of automotive wrecking yards -- They are bound to have a creative solution or two.
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Old 08-25-2008, 07:14 AM   #10
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George - I am working on the same problem for a 1970 Amerigo here in SC. I'm heading over to the DMV this week to speak with someone in person regarding our options. I believe that we may be able to call it a homemade trailer and have it retitled that way but I need clarification. Typically the issue with SC is that we don't do vehicle inspections so that limits what SC is able to do. We have a preowned RV business and see rigs come through auction with little or no damage but have a "vin kill" due to an insurance claim. To our knowledge there is no way to retitle these units. It doesn't appear that you have an issue like that, you just need a title and so do I. I'll do some research through our dealer connections and let you know
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Old 08-25-2008, 09:08 AM   #11
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google is your friend Here is SC title service agencies. Such companies deal with this issue daily.
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Old 08-25-2008, 04:18 PM   #12
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KiM H and Coach George..Thank You for you help.
Kim I will be anxiously awainting your reply.
Coach George.. I will go look at what you put a link to.
When I get the problem settled, I will let everyone know.. Thanks Again everybody!
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Old 08-28-2008, 12:26 PM   #13
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Hi, I finally was able to get in touch with someone at the SCDMVonline.org (option 4) I was told two very interesting things.

1) You do not have to have tags / title on a trailer weighing less than 2,500lbs. You can freely take it all over SC but can't cross a boarder legally.

2) If you don't have a title and have done repairs to your trailer, you can request a rebuilt/homemade title. This will require that you complete form 401-A and 4038. You will need photos and receipts if you go this route. I was told that the unit would be inspected for road worthiness and then given a new serial number.

401-A link http://www.scdmvonline.com/DMVNew/forms/401-A.pdf
4038 link http://www.scdmvonline.com/DMVNew/forms/4038.pdf

I've found that each time I call I get a different response but since I was able to pull those two forms off of scdmvonline.org it sounded like it was an option.

My new project arrives tomorrow so I'll be going the rebuilt/homemade trailer route. It just seemed easier since I can do photos and keep receipts for the entire rebuild.

Keep me posted on your progress.

PS: DMV.com is not correct information for SC. It is not the official site and I suggest you use it as a rough guide when needed and not count on the info being correct
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Old 08-28-2008, 10:14 PM   #14
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Joe MacDonald suggested this to me a couple of years ago. I did not need it since I was able to scrounge up enough alternate paperwork to get my trailer transfered bringing it into Canada.
Here is what they say specific to trailers on this page:
We can also register all types of 1989 and older trailers thru our network of bonded & licensed affiliates.

In the process, we purchase the vehicle from you. We will then register the vehicle in our company name. In turn, we sell the vehicle back to you or to whomever you wish by transferring the documents. We will send you the registration, letter of title and a bill of sale. You will then have all the necessary documents to legally title, and/or register the vehicle in your State, Province or Country.

Our process takes approximately 7 to 10 days from the date we receive your order. We accept transactions from anywhere in the world.

Depending on the age, pricing appears to be in the $150-200 range

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