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4 Tips for Buying a Car Out of State

If you are shopping for a vehicle that is not carried by a local dealer, or have found a good deal on a car being sold in another state, you may be wondering how to go about purchasing an out of state vehicle. These four tips can help you navigate your purchase.

1. Research Delivery Methods

If you are purchasing a vehicle from a large dealer, they may make all of the shipping arrangements for you. However, if you are buying from a private seller, you may need to arrange for shipping yourself. Research secure auto shipping methods to get an estimate of how long it will take you to receive your vehicle and how much it will cost to ship it so that you can factor this into your purchasing decision.

2. Inspect the Vehicle

It is probably not practical to travel to another state just to take a look at the car you are thinking about buying, but there are other ways you can inspect it. Ask the seller to send you detailed photographs of the interior and exterior from multiple angles. Obtain a vehicle history report from a service such as Carfax. Pay particular attention to any outstanding liens on the title. If you have the vehicle transported to your state without those liens being satisfied, you could end up being responsible for them. Ask the seller to have the vehicle inspected by an independent auto-mechanic and send you the mechanic’s findings.

3. Pay the Tax and Register the Vehicle in Your State

Once you have purchased and received the vehicle, you will need to register it in your state and pay the sales tax. If you are unsure how much tax you owe, consult with a local dealer or your tax professional. In some states, you may need to have the car inspected before you can get your tags. Your local Department of Motor Vehicles can advise you of any necessary inspections that need to be performed. Be aware of any deadlines that might apply.

4. Make Sure Your Vehicle Is Insured

If you have automobile insurance on another vehicle, that coverage may extend to your new vehicle for a set amount of time. You will need to obtain coverage on your new vehicle before that time period expires.

Purchasing a vehicle out of state can be a more complex process than buying locally, but in some cases may be worthwhile. These four tips can help you smoothly complete your transaction.

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