So long are the days of spending your Saturday on the local car lot. These days, thanks to technology, consumers have the ability to purchase a car from the comfort of their home with the click of a button. Furthermore, their search is no longer limited to local inventory. Purchasing a car online gives consumers a much wider variety of vehicles to choose from and enables them to find exactly what they want. This has made buying a car out of state easier than ever before. Whether you are looking for a new or used vehicle, your chances of finding the exact make, model, and color are much greater when you expand your search nationwide. Not only do you have a better chance of finding the perfect car, but you can even save a ton of money on out-of-state dealership discounts and incentives. That said, you still need to be prepared for some of the pitfalls and obstacles you may face purchasing a car in another state. The following tips can ensure you are well-prepared before making a purchase.
Do Your Research
If you are looking to buy a used car, it is imperative that you get a vehicle history report. Find a reputable company such as CARFAX and take some time to look up the full history report of the vehicle. This will provide you with information regarding a crash or repair history as well as financial issues such as any liens that may be out against the vehicle. Discuss any potential findings with the seller before taking any steps toward making a purchase.
Have it Inspected
If you are not close enough to visit and test drive the vehicle yourself, take the time to have the vehicle inspected by a local mechanic who can evaluate your vehicle’s condition, test drive it, and alert you to any possible problems. If you are purchasing a car from an authorized dealer, they should already take care of this for you because it is required that all vehicles purchased out of state have a pre-purchase inspection performed on them.
Factor in the Cost of Shipping
If you are close enough to drive and pick up your vehicle, this may not apply. Otherwise, you will need to budget for shipping costs when purchasing a car out of state. Some dealerships and sellers will offer incentives such as free shipping but usually the burden of shipping falls on the buyer. Be sure to consider the cost of shipping and factor that into the price when purchasing a car from another state.
Understand the Taxes and Fees
You may think you will save money by purchasing a car from a state with no sales tax. However, you are responsible for paying sales tax in your state of residence. Therefore, if you purchase a car in another state, they will simply pass along the sales tax to the proper agency in your state. In addition to your own state sales tax, you may also have to pay any applicable local sales tax in the state of purchase.
Consider State Inspections
In many states, a smog or emissions test is required in order to register your vehicle. This could delay the registration process so be sure to check with your local DMV beforehand to see what’s required in your state. You should also ask the seller to show proof that the vehicle has passed previous emissions testing so you can avoid surprises.
Obtain the Title and Registration
If you are buying a car from an out-of-state dealership, they should be able to provide you with the necessary paperwork. However, if you are purchasing a car from a private seller, you will need to make sure that the seller provides you with a signed title and bill of sale. This will give you proof of ownership and allow you to obtain proper licensing and registration in your home state. You usually have between 30-60 days to acquire these documents and register your new vehicle.
Frequently Asked Questions
Answers to Your Car Moving Questions
The hardest thing for people researching car moving companies to understand is that the prices they are getting are not hard and fast gaurantees, but rather ESTIMATES of what one company thinks it will take to get a vehicle moved promptly versus another company's opinion of what it will take. Don't be fooled, there are not carriers committed to take your vehicle at these quoted prices, the company you choose will still have to get to work getting a carrier to commit to move it at the price they quote you.
Your total price breaks down into two parts, the broker's fee (or 'deposit' as everyone calls it) and the carriers fee (your COD amount) Make no mistake about this, EVERYONE YOU ARE GETTING SALES CALLS FROM IS GOING TO BROKER YOUR MOVE. In this industry, there are brokers who try to fool you into thinking that they are the actual carriers and there are an equal amount of carriers who sell themselves on the fact that they have a truck or two but are not being honest about the fact that they broker out 90% of the orders they book. Here is a quick easy way to tell, if a company takes an up front fee, whether they call it a deposit or any other name, they are a broker. Carriers do not take any payment until the vehicle is delivered.
In our opinion, you are crazy to do so. Have you ever been paid up front for the work that you perform for your employer? Why would you pay a fee up front when there are reliable and trustworthy companies like ours that won't ask for it until we provide you with your carriers details?
The average transit time from pick up to delivery on any vehicle going coast to coast will be between one and two weeks. From there you can figure your transit time based on how far your vehicle is traveling, i.e. from either coast to the Midwest might average 3-7 days.