It's a classic "Old Lady Car" - a 2004 Impala with 43,000 miles on it (I know - I could have stopped at "Impala" and we'd have finished the definition of "Old Lad Car"). She hasn't left the house unless someone else drove her since she moved here in May of 2013, and rarely drove before then. I've been trying to talk her into selling the car for about a year now.
We have no garage. Our neighborhood has alternate side parking in the winter, so the car was parked in the backyard all winter. We had to replace the battery to move it to the street, and we've been ignoring it out there since spring. My mom's friend would borrow it once in a while to do some shopping for her. The last time she took it out, she reported that the brake pedal felt like it was hitting bottom.
While we were on vacation, Mom's friend took our car to run some errands and arrived home just in time to see a tow truck ready to load up Mom's car. Turns out her inspection had expired and no one had noticed but the police. Two hundred dollars later, the tow truck and the tickets were paid off and the car parked back in the backyard. A few hundred more and the brake lines and pads have been replaced and the car has passed inspection. Mom agrees, tearfully, that it's time to sell. We have not one but two potential buyers!
What don't we have?
I found the registration. It says, "Non-transferable."
I spent half an hour in a line at the DMV to find out who the lien holder is, and we are tracking down whether or not she actually ever finished paying for the car so we can get a lien release letter and a clean title. And I want to do it all before the registration is up at the end of this month.
It's always something.
Every time the car situation crossed her mind, she cries. I understand - short of admission into a nursing home, it's the last nail in the coffin of her independence.