How to Get a Car Dealer License in New Hampshire

December 7, 2023

Team ACV




How to Get a Car Dealer License in New Hampshire

ACV facts & figures

No items found.
New Hampshire State Flag

The process of getting a dealer license can be complex. If you’re opening a car dealership, you probably want to be able to start selling as soon as possible. To make that a reality, you will need to get your dealer license in a timely fashion and fulfill the application requirements with absolute accuracy. To help with this, we have compiled a detailed list for you to follow when you are applying for an auto dealer license in New Hampshire. 

A Step-by-Step Guide to Getting Your New Hampshire Dealer License

1. Identify Which Type of Dealer License You Need

If you already have businesses in other states, you may be familiar with the different types of dealer licenses that are available. But make sure you read all the details since every state differentiates its license types in unique ways. New Hampshire offers many dealer license types, so you will need to choose from the following based on your business priorities: 

  • Retail vehicle dealer: For anyone selling more than five vehicles to the public each year 
  • Wholesale dealer: For anyone selling to other vehicle dealers
  • Motorcycle dealer: For anyone selling more than five motorcycles each year
  • Utility dealer: For anyone selling trailers, tractors, farm equipment, manufactured housing, and more 
  • Repair dealer: For anyone repairing vehicles (not selling) 
  • Auto recycling dealer: For anyone rebuilding used vehicles or selling parts 

2. Complete a Criminal Background Check

All owners of dealerships in New Hampshire must complete a $25 criminal background check and include the results with their licensing application. If you are from another state and looking to expand operations in New Hampshire, you must complete background checks in both states2.

3. Register Your Business 

You will need to register your new business with the New Hampshire Secretary of State, as well as secure a tax permit with the NH Department of Revenue. 

4. Get a Permanent Business Location 

Before getting your dealer license, you must show proof that you have secured a location for your business. Furthermore, this location must meet a handful of requirements to be eligible. Ensure your location: 

  • Is at least 750 square feet and is primarily used to sell vehicles 
  • Has a sign with the name of the dealership that is visible from the road, with letters that are at least 10 inches tall 
  • Includes a registration certificate as a single business location 
  • Features a heating system and electrical outlets that are up to state standards 
  • Has listed business hours that are at least 37.5 hours each week

5. Get an Auto Dealer Bond

The state of New Hampshire requires dealers to secure a bond worth $25,000. The price you pay will only be a fraction of this total value and will be based on your personal and business financial standing. 

6. Submit All Dealer License Application Documents and Fees

In addition to the above, you are also required to submit the following with your application: 

  • Proof of adherence to all local zoning rules 
  • Copy of your lease
  • Copy of your service agreement (if you do not have a service station on-site)

The application package must also include a $125 licensing fee and you can send the check and required documents to: 

New Hampshire Department of Safety
Division of Motor Vehicles 
33 Hazen Drive 
Concord, NH 03305

7. Pass Your Inspection

Once the DMV has received your application, you will need to schedule an inspection with the state police. Receiving your license is contingent on passing this final step.3 

This is not intended as legal advice. If you have questions about dealer licensing requirements, please seek the assistance of legal counsel.

Find the Best Used Car Inventory in New Hampshire With ACV Auctions

Once you complete the full licensing process and are ready to do business, work with ACV Auctions to get the best used car inventory in New Hampshire and from sources across the country. Our in-depth online auctioning platform features vehicles that have been inspected by a trusted member of our team and come with a detailed report. We make sure that you can be confident in every bid you place. Get started today by registering with us. 


  1. Lance Surety Bonds. (2023). “The Complete New Hampshire Dealer License Guide.” Risk Strategies: Lance Surety Bonds. Retrieved November 30, 2023. 
  2. JW Surety Bonds. “New Hampshire Auto Dealer License Guide.” Risk Strategies: JW Surety Bonds. Retrieved November 30, 2023. 
  3. Bryant Surety Bonds. (2019). “How to get a New Hampshire dealer license” Bryant Surety Bonds. Retrieved November 30, 2023.