Tips for selling an aircraft

June 4, 2013

You've decided to sell your beloved aircraft. But that is only the first step in a process that ends when you hand over the keys to the buyer.  AOPA has many resources to help members with this important decision.  Below are five tips that will help with the aircraft selling process. 

Complete a bill of sale. Use FAA Form 8050-2; ensure seller’s name is exactly as it is on the current registration and have both parties sign the form.

Check payment. Cash is acceptable, but is required to be reported to the IRS for amounts more than $10,000. A certified or cashier’s check is the common way to pay, but a bank wire transfer is the safest choice. You may want to use the services of AOPA’s partner, Aircraft Title and Escrow Services provided by Aero-Space Reports, to handle the transfer of funds.

Call your insurance company. Let them know the aircraft has been sold so you are no longer liable for the aircraft.

Prepare for the aircraft transfer. Before the transfer, remove the original registration certificate, complete the sale information on the back of that certificate, and mail it to the FAA. Also provide all aircraft logbooks and records as agreed upon to the buyer.

Aircraft registration. It is the buyer’s responsibility to register the aircraft using Aircraft Registration Form AC Form 8050-1, available from the Aircraft Registration Branch or your local FAA Flight Standards District Office (FSDO).

There are many places to list aircraft for sale.  They include AOPA’s Aircraft Partnership Program, Trade-A-Plane, and the Aircraft Bluebook-Price Digest.  For further questions or information, call AOPA’s staff of aviation specialists at 800/USA-AOPA (872-2672). Also, check out the extensive Web resources on AOPA's website devoted to aircraft ownership, including the complete guide to selling a used aircraft.

Benét Wilson

Benét J. Wilson | AOPA eNewsletter and Social Media Editor

AOPA eNewsletter and Social Media Editor Benét J. Wilson joined AOPA in 2011. She is working on her private pilot certificate.