I’ve bought a car. What do I do next?

You can’t beat a new car day but remember there are a few things you should check off before you drive off into the sunset. First of all... Take a step back, take a look at your new pride and joy and congratulate yourself. New car days take some beating, whether you’ve purchased a new car, or one that’s pre-loved. 


If it is a brand new car or a used car from a dealer, there’s not much you need to do, short of planning your first road trip. The list is a little longer if you’ve purchased privately. 


Here are a few things to consider once you’ve purchased a car. 


Make sure your transfer paperwork is in order 

Vehicle Transfer, Change of Ownership or Notice of Disposal forms need to be completed (signed by both the buyer and seller) when a car is sold.  


In some states, the responsibility of processing the transfer lies with the seller. In others, it’s up to the buyer. Either way, it’s important that both parties keeps a copy of the form as a record of transfer and date of sale. 


Australian Capital Territory 

New South Wales 

Northern Territory 


South Australia 



Western Australia 


Ask for a receipt of sale 

While this document is not legally binding, it’s a good way of keeping a record of the sale and all relevant details. Ask for a printout or email of a receipt of sale document.


In some states where the transfer is the buyer’s responsibility and a Roadworthy Certificate is required, make sure you have it before you drive away. 

As added peace of mind, we recommend purchasing a vehicle history report to ensure you get all the facts and information about the vehicle’s past as part of the purchase process. If you’ve paid for the car in full, ensure any pecuniary interest has been cleared. 

Insure your new car before you drive it 

If you have an existing relationship with an insurer, the chances are it will happily issue a cover note ahead of you negotiating your permanent policy. 

Remember to finalise your insurance choice ASAP – cover notes only last for a limited time.  

Check your roadside assistance 

Call your roadside assistance provider and/or auto club and notify them of your purchase of the car to ensure your coverage on the road. 

Transfer your tollway tag or pass 

Before getting into your new car, make sure the car is registered on your tollway account. 

Wash your new car 

This is a great way to check out your new car in detail. If it is a brand-new car it’s a sure way of finding any nick or marks you may not have picked up at the dealership. If you do find anything ensure you flag it with the dealer immediately.  

Add your car to the carsales Garage 

Adding your car and its odometer reading to your carsales Garage unlocks exclusive insights into your car’s resale value and predicted future value. Plus you will receive extra carsales member perks such as tyre offers. Find out more on becoming a carsales member here. 



Related articles: 

Helpful car care and maintenance tips 
Car washing tips

Any information on this page is provided as a guide only. It is not professional or expert advice and is not a substitute for such advice. The content may not be appropriate, correct or sufficient for your circumstances and should not be relied on as the only reason you do or don’t do anything.
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