7 essential documents needed when purchasing a car in the Philippines

Updated Dec 28, 2020 | Same topic: Best Advice for Car Buyers

Planning to buy a new car? Check out the list of required documents that Pinoy drivers need to prepare before buying a vehicle.

Whether you’re buying a new or used car, there will be a process that you’d have to go through with the seller. This process involves a lot of paperwork and it's best that you've got everything prepared before making the purchase. Lucky for you, Philkotse.com has already listed the required documents that you need to prepare before buying a car.

1. Payment documents

This can come in a variety of forms; you can pay in cash or in whatever terms that you and the seller agree to. These are the most usual type of payment documents required to make a successful car purchase.

  • Check from the bank;
  • A check from a pre-approved loan;
  • Check from the cashier;
  • Personal check.

If you’re buying a new car then the dealership will be the one to give you the instructions regarding the payment documents that you will need to present. If you are buying a used car then you can simply have a rational conversation with the seller. You can present the documents you have that will prove that you will be able to afford the vehicle.

Also, if you’re buying from a dealership or you’re buying a second-hand vehicle, you will no longer need to present any bank checks or the likes if you plan to pay in cash.

Car buying required documents_paymemt documents

Payment documents can come in a variety of forms; you can pay in cash or in whatever terms that you and the seller agree to

>>> You might like to read: Buying a Car in the Philippines: Cash vs. Installment

2. Driver’s license

For starters, you are buying a car for the sole purpose of driving it so this requirement is pretty self-explanatory. The importance of this requirement is stressed with greater importance once you decide you want to buy a car from a dealership. They have processes and protocols to follow and they will probably need photocopies of the documents that they need you to present for record purposes. In the case of buying from used-car sellers, the requirement isn’t that strict though a driver's license is still necessary most often they will help their prospective buyer find a way around it.

If you want to buy the car and you don’t have a license but your purpose is to sell it as a third-hand vehicle then that could be manageable as well. This is also one of the proofs of identity that they are most likely to ask from you. It’s also best to expect that you would need to present recent electric bills, water bills or maybe even internet or phone bill as additional documents to support this.

Buying car required documents_Driver's license

The importance of a driver's license requirement is stressed with greater importance once you decide you want to buy a car from a dealership

3. Proof of insurance

If you're not a fan of paying for something that you're not sure you would ever need, then you must be annoyed at the insurance fee that you would have to add to your costs. This is asides from your original bill for the car of course as well as other fees to be collected.

If you’re buying from a dealership, they could have a few suggestions for you but there’s no need to agree to anything if you don’t think their advice suits you.

You could also contact a company or previous insurers that you already had a great experience with so you know that you’re sure and you will feel secured about the financial decision you just made. If you’ve never had prior experience with insurers and insurance quotes regarding vehicles then you should take time and study what you will need for your car and what you can afford to pay.

Buying car required documents_insurance

You should contact a company or previous insurers that you already had a great experience

There are different types of car insurance in the Philippines out there and deciding on the spot about which to get while still surprised is not the smartest thing you can do. You may be tempted to say yes to the F&I manager’s suggestions just so to get the requirements to talk over with. However, it's best you consider studying about applicable insurance terms first before you even go to the dealership to buy a car.

We would like to further explain to you the paperwork and requirements necessary to purchase a vehicle. From the list below we separated these requirements here specifically for buying used vehicles.

4. Car Title

The car title is always the first thing any prospective buyer should look for. This is the document that shows that the legal ownership of the vehicle will no longer belong to the previous owner. It is also a document that resembles the purpose of a contract in wherein the sale was made.

There may be instances where you are tempted to buy a vehicle from a seller who posted his vehicle online. Though we have nothing against this, we strongly advise that you check the legitimacy of the seller as well as the documents that he or she is presenting to you.

There are instances when the seller submits photocopies of the title first and asks for a down payment or any type of initial payment before handing out the actual document. This allows any shady transaction to happen and the seller can get away with the prospective buyer’s hard-earned money.

buying required documents_car title

Car title is the document that shows that the legal ownership of the vehicle will no longer belong to the previous owner

If you’ve been handed out with the original copy of the car title already, make sure it has the following details:

  • The date of purchase wherein you agreed to buy the vehicle.
  • The price of the vehicle in numbers and in words.
  • An odometer reading that displays the car's miles.
  • Signatory proof that both the seller and buyer agreed to everything stated in the title and that there is no problem with the purchased merchandise whatsoever.
  • Notarization that applies the power of the law to the agreement.

5. Deed of Sale

Not every seller will require that you have one but you may secure one for yourself. There are free forms from websites that you can take advantage of. The deed should have the following information;

  • Model
  • Make
  • Type of body
  • Motor number
  • Plate number
  • Vehicle identification number
  • Official receipt number
  • Car registration number
  • Purchase price
  • Sell date
  • Personal information of both parties

buying required documents_deed of sale

Not every seller will require that you have a deed of sale but you may secure one for yourself

6. Registration Certificate

The registration certificate contains other important details about the car including its chassis and engine number. The vehicle needs to be registered to the region you bring it to. It’s a long process but it’s a definite necessity.

>>> Also check out: Car registration renewal in the Philippines: Everything you should know

7. Purchase Receipt

If you’re buying from a seller and not a company, you’re less likely to get a receipt. However, a receipt can help back up the purchase that you made and you should be entitled to receive one if you ask. This can be the generic receipt that you can purchase in school supplies stores and the following details need to be writ on it.

  • Names of the two parties
  • Date of purchase
  • Name of Merchandise
  • Cost
Hanna Sanchez

Hanna Sanchez


Hanna is one of the most competitive swimmers in the country during her day. It was not long before she discovered her passion for the automotive industry as well. Nowadays, she balances her passion through writing as well as coaching.