Iowa Boat Bill of Sale Form

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Updated June 01, 2022

An Iowa boat bill of sale records the negotiated terms surrounding a vessel’s purchase and sale transaction between two (2) or more private parties, usually a buyer and seller. All parties involved can create this document with the vessel’s essential information as well as the agreed-upon purchase price. Upon completion, the new owner must present the bill of sale to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) in order to properly register the vessel under their name.

Signing Requirements – The buyer and seller must both sign the bill of sale.

Table of Contents

Registering a Boat

All motorized and sail-powered vessels operating on Iowa’s waterways must be registered with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR). Individuals who obtain a vessel through a private sale must register within thirty (30) days of purchase; if the registration is current at the time of sale, the new owner may operate the boat without registering it under their name during these provisional 30 days.

All registrations are valid through the DNR’s three (3) year cycle system and expire on April 30 of the third cycle period. The registration schedule from 2019 to 2028 is as follows:

2019-2022: Renewal period begins January 1, 2019;

2022-2025: Renewal period begins January 1, 2025;

2025-2028: Renewal period begins January 1, 2028.

Where to Register

Boat owners must appear in-person at a local County Recorder’s Office to submit all the necessary documentation.

Required Documents