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A bill of sale is a legal document that is used to transfer ownership of an item from a seller to a buyer.

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Sample Bill of Sale

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Bill of sale: What Is It?

A bill of sale includes relevant information such as contact information, descriptions of the items, payment methods, and warranties.

The bill of sale proves the owner of a given item. This can be used in a court of law to demonstrate ownership for items such as vehicles, boats, motorcycles, and many more items.

Bill of sale benefits

A legally binding bill of sale makes the lives of both buyers and sellers substantially easier.

Benefits for sellers:
  • Ease of tax reporting
  • "As-is" protection
  • Date of ownership transfer
Benefits for buyers:
  • Proof of ownership
  • Date of ownership transfer
  • Warranty information

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What Is A Bill of Sale?

A bill of sale is a document used in the transfer of an item's ownership from the person selling it (the Seller) to the person purchasing it (the Buyer). It is a legally binding document, often used in a court of law as proof of an item's ownership .  It contains all pertinent information regarding the sale, including contact information for Buyer and Seller, warranty information (if applicable), and the date that ownership is transferred. Day-to-day Bills of Sales comes in many forms; a bill of sale can be as minor as a receipt for a pack of gum or as major as a record of a large, and expensive purchase, such a boat or a car.

From a legal perspective, a free bill of sale form makes the lives of both buyer and seller. To make your life easier still, FormSwift has devised a bill of sale template that lets you draw up a free bill of sale form in just a few minutes. Below we have outlined the major components of a bill of sale form.

  • Property Location - This section of the bill of sale form specifies the location of the item being sold. Typically this includes only general location information: city, county, state, etc. Our bill of sale template also includes a brief description of the item being sold.
  • Seller(s) - This section includes the main seller's contact information, including his or her full name and address. It is also where any additional sellers are noted.
  • Buyer(s) - This section provides the contact information of the buyer. It also lists information about any additional buyers.
  • Price - This lists the total price the buyer will pay for the property in question. Typically subtotals are not itemized on a bill of sale.
  • Form of Payment - This specifies what payment method the buyer will use. Options include cash, personal check, certified check, money order, etc.
  • Sales Tax - This section specifies how sales tax will affect the price. It is either included in the prices or added to the price.
  • Property - This includes the date of property transfer. It also specifies whether the item is being sold "as is" or under warranty. If the item is being sold "as is," the bill of sale states that the buyer has had the opportunity to inspect and approve the item's condition.
  • Witness Information - This section is only pertinent if a witness will be present to sign the bill of sale. It includes the witness' full name, address and other contact information . The witness can either be a public notary or a party agreed upon by the Buyer and Seller.

What Are the Parts of a Bill of Sale Template?

When buying or selling property, a bill of sale template is a great way to certify that the transaction is being made.  It is also a means of legally documenting the details of the transfer of property, as it will typically contain extensive information on the transferred item(s) along with the contact information of the buyer and seller.  Furthermore, a bill of sale is a relatively simple form that could even be found through an Internet search engine.  You do not need to be an attorney to create a bill of sale, and if you can locate a free bill of sale template online, you might spare yourself the expense of hiring an attorney or legal expert.

On the other hand, it is not a smart idea to choose a free bill of sale template at random .  If you're going to create a bill of sale, you should at least be familiar with the parts of such a document.  After all, this is a legally binding document that could cause a great deal of problems if the essential parts aren't all there.  So, let's take a look at some of the parts that you should expect to see in a bill of sale template.

For one thing, if all of the basics aren't there, then you don't have a usable bill of sale template.  Even if it's free of charge, avoid any template that doesn't indicate a place to write or type the names of the buyer and seller, along with their addresses and telephone numbers.  If also there's a place in the template to include e-mail addresses, that's even better.  Next, check to see if there is a section where the seller and/or buyer can indicate the details of the property that is to be transferred.  There should be sufficient room in this section to leave highly detailed information about the property and the condition it's in at the time of purchase.  Keep in mind that if more than one item is encompassed within the transaction, it may be necessary to itemize or list the particular items separately.  If this is the case in your situation, the bill of sale template that you choose should allow for this.

The next thing to remember is that your bill of sale template must specify the financial details of the transaction.  Upon viewing the form, one should easily be able to tell how much the property was sold for and when it was sold.  If there is sales tax involved, this should be noted as well; moreover, the method of payment (such as cash) should be clearly indicated in the template.  Any bill of sale template, free or otherwise, ought to include these elements.


Don't be surprised if a bill of sale template includes an "as is" clause.  This clause will stipulate that the transferred property has been inspected by the purchaser and that the seller disclaims any warranty as to the condition of the property.   Thus, the free bill of sale form will affirm that the purchaser is knowingly buying the property in its existing condition at the point of sale.  This is perfectly normal and should not cause any alarm if it is included in a bill of sale template.

Finally, any template should have a place for at least three signatures:  the buyer(s), the seller(s), and at least one witness or notary.  The bill of sale, if written properly, will have places for printed names, signatures, and dates at the bottom of the form.  After you get to the bottom of the document, double-check it to make sure that it looks professional and is free of spelling and grammatical errors.  If your bill of sale template passes muster, you'll have a reusable legal document that can give you peace of mind anytime you're buying or selling a tangible piece of property. 

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