Boat Registration

Transferring a Boat

Items needed when transferring a boat:
  • Bill of Sale (PDF)
  • Most recent registration (signature of seller required on backside of registration)
  • Title, if applicable (signature of seller required on backside of title)
  • Proof sales tax has been paid, if applicable
  • Application for Registration, Title and Security Interest

Boat Registration Exceptions

The following craft do not need to be registered:
  • Canoes (no motor) 13 feet or less in length
  • Inflatable vessels 7 feet in length or less
  • Kayaks 13 feet or less in length

State Sales Tax Information

Sales of boats and other watercraft in Iowa are subject to the state sales tax of 6% plus local option taxes, if any. This applies to sales by Individuals, as well as, dealers.
Anyone purchasing a boat from an individual should obtain a receipt that shows the cost of the boat. The buyer will then pay the sales tax on the cost of the boat to the County Recorder.

If a trailer is purchased with the boat, the 5% motor vehicle use tax is paid to the County Treasurer

Department of Natural Resources Boat Fees

Fee Type
Transfer $3.75
Duplicate Registration
Duplicate Decals
Title $12.75
Lien $12.75
Late Fee