your home state. Thinking about buying a new vehicle from another state in the hopes of avoiding taxes? Similar to smog and emissions checks, safety inspection requirements vary by state. A common example is if you're going to school out of state, where you want to buy, register and insure a car, but you want to keep your license from your home state. Generally, when you're buying a car from an out-of-state dealership, the dealer handles all title and registration paperwork for you. 4. Buying a car out of state opens up a whole new road of possibilities. The Michigan Secretary of State Title Application requires the driver's license number of the buyer. Even though you're buying a car from out of state, you'll pay the sales tax to the state in which you'll register the car—i.e. Cars driven in Michigan must be titled, registered and plated, with one exception: You can purchase a car from an individual and drive it straight home without a license plate. Sales Taxes. Legal ownership means obtaining title in your name, as the seller transfers the title to you, the buyer. If the inspection isn't valid/accepted, or the vehicle hasn't had one or comes from a state that doesn't require one (and your state does), you'll most likely need to bring your vehicle in for a smog check before you can title and register it. The primary concerns in driving a recently-purchased vehicle home from another state are being able to insure the vehicle and getting the necessary paperwork to legally drive the car until it is registered in the owner’s state. According to Autotrader, there are three ways to get an out of state vehicle insured after the purchase. The vehicle identification number and mileage on the title must match the VIN and mileage on the automobile. The process of getting insurance for an out of state vehicle purchase is similar to insuring a car bought in the owner’s state of residence. Of course, much of this paperwork will be temporary, given you'll need to title and register the vehicle in your home state upon returning. Buying a car represents more than a cash transfer. So, if you hail from that northeastern commonwealth and are buying out of state, you can drive the car as far as the Connecticut, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, or Vermont border, but will then need to park the car and call a cab to take you the rest of the way. © 1999 - 2020 DMV.ORG. Some states require them; others don't. Of course, buying a car from out of state requires the same kind of research and shopping you'd do if you were buying one closer to home. Buying a car represents more than a cash transfer. All of the conditions that apply when buying a vehicle from an individual also apply when buying from a family member. If your state has higher rates, you will be responsible for paying the difference when registering your car. However, some cars simply aren’t widely available in certain areas. Remember, nearly all states require car insurance or some other form of financial responsibility before you can title, register, and legally operate the vehicle. Depending on the state, the required documentation to obtain this type of registration usually includes the certificate of title, the bill of sale, a valid insurance card and an out of state ID for the owner. However, if the dealership doesn't handle it for you, or you buy a car from a private party, you must pay the sales tax to your home state's appropriate state agency before you can title and register the vehicle. When you buy a car from a state that requires smog checks, that car might already have a valid emissions inspection sticker; if so, check with your state to see if the current state's emissions sticker is valid/accepted in your state, too. Smog Check and Car Inspection section for emissions testing requirements specific to each state. Some states that require them do so before titling and registering the vehicle; others just require them on a regular basis (e.g., annual, biennial, etc.). Copyright 2020 Leaf Group Ltd. / Leaf Group Media, Michigan Secretary of State: Title Application Form, Michigan Secretary of State: Buying a Vehicle from a Dealership. The process depends on the laws of your state of residence and the state where the car was purchased, and whether you are already working with an insurance company or need to find one. The best way to address these concerns depends on state law, and whether the seller is an auto dealer or a private party. When you're buying a car out of state, perhaps the best piece of advice related to car insurance is to call your insurance agent before you purchase the car. Automobile dealers usually are well-versed in situations where vehicles are purchased by people who live in other states. Keep in mind the dealership will probably calculate the taxes based on their home state's tax rates. For a buyer who has existing insurance policies, getting coverage may be as simple as making a phone call. For example, Connecticut allows vehicle buyers to purchase an in-transit registration for purchases from either an automobile dealer or a private party. If you are thinking about buying a car from out of state, consider these tips: Subscribe to stay in the loop & on the road! A car dealership handles sales paperwork, but individual sellers must write the current odometer reading on the title and sign his name. Often, this means a delicate balance between working with the seller's state's motor vehicle agency and your own. However, if you're buying from a private seller, you'll need to handle title and registration paperwork on your own. Understand that the following checklist is a guideline only; Some insurance policies provide automatic coverage for a limited amount of time for new purchases. Buying a car in one state and registering it in another can be a complex situation. Buying from a private party may entail more work to ensure that the car can be driven legally after the purchase. your home state. Some of the extra steps for out-of-state buying are going to cost you money. If the buyer has the details of the car that is going to be purchased, including the vehicle identification number, insurance can be arranged in advance. Here are the facts on that and other out-of-state buying issues to keep in mind. This article was written by the It Still Works team, copy edited and fact checked through a multi-point auditing system, in efforts to ensure our readers only receive the best information. you must check with your own department of motor vehicles or equivalent entity for specific instructions on bringing home a vehicle purchased from out of state. Your state's motor vehicle agency will advise you on specific sales taxes; however, some states provide tax calculators online for extra convenience. Our Title Transfers and Car Registration sections outline exactly what you need to do to transfer a vehicle's title and register the vehicle in your home state. So, if you can find a similar vehicle at a comparable – or even slightly higher – price within state lines, you should consider that car first. Learn more about your state's requirements in our section on Car Insurance. You must apply to a Michigan Secretary of State branch office for new title, registration and plates within 15 days of purchase. Some insurance providers put clauses in existing policies that cover newly purchased vehicles for certain periods of time to handle situations such as this; others don't, and require you to purchase insurance on the vehicle before you buy it.

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