Author Topic: Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?  (Read 3872 times)

stor_stark

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Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?
« on: January 20, 2015, 01:38:53 PM »
I will soon (in about 2 weeks) be relocating from Indiana to Colorado for a job, and I need to buy a car. I know generally what I'm looking for in that regard, but I'm wondering if I should buy one in Indiana before I leave. The other option is to rent a car to use to move out to Colorado and then buy a used car once I'm there and established for a few days. I've never purchased a car before, so I'm not exactly sure how the registration, taxes, etc. work, especially if I'm transporting it to a new state within 30 days of purchasing it. Any advice on how I should approach this situation?

JLee

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Re: Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?
« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2015, 01:54:23 PM »
Sometimes car prices vary by location, so I would find the best one available in each location and see which is the better buy, and go from there.

I live in Phoenix and I've flown to Reno and Albuquerque to get vehicles...I'm very picky. :P

pzxc

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Re: Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?
« Reply #2 on: January 20, 2015, 01:54:56 PM »
You can't drive it across state lines unless it is registered and insured.  Since you live in Indiana right now, that means you'd have to register it and pay taxes in Indiana then do the same thing again in Colorado.

Also, with a new (to you) car that you're unfamiliar with, unless you're a gearhead that knows what you're doing, the reliability of said vehicle to make it on a 2000 mile trip is unknown.

I would wait and buy a car at your destination.

JLee

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Re: Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?
« Reply #3 on: January 20, 2015, 02:26:48 PM »
You can't drive it across state lines unless it is registered and insured.  Since you live in Indiana right now, that means you'd have to register it and pay taxes in Indiana then do the same thing again in Colorado.

Also, with a new (to you) car that you're unfamiliar with, unless you're a gearhead that knows what you're doing, the reliability of said vehicle to make it on a 2000 mile trip is unknown.

I would wait and buy a car at your destination.

You can insure any vehicle. You also shouldn't be driving it at all, regardless of across state lines, without it being registered (with some exceptions for certain state laws). The OP is in a short enough timeframe that he should be able to get a temporary plate from his local DMV to transport the vehicle to his new state of residence.

stor_stark

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Re: Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?
« Reply #4 on: January 20, 2015, 02:32:15 PM »
You can't drive it across state lines unless it is registered and insured.  Since you live in Indiana right now, that means you'd have to register it and pay taxes in Indiana then do the same thing again in Colorado.

Also, with a new (to you) car that you're unfamiliar with, unless you're a gearhead that knows what you're doing, the reliability of said vehicle to make it on a 2000 mile trip is unknown.

I would wait and buy a car at your destination.

You can insure any vehicle. You also shouldn't be driving it at all, regardless of across state lines, without it being registered (with some exceptions for certain state laws). The OP is in a short enough timeframe that he should be able to get a temporary plate from his local DMV to transport the vehicle to his new state of residence.

I guess my main question is whether or not a temporary Indiana plate is legal to drive across state lines, and will this save me from having to pay the registration fees in Indiana? Obviously I would need to get insurance regardless of where I buy it.

LadyStache

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Re: Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?
« Reply #5 on: January 20, 2015, 02:35:20 PM »
You can't drive it across state lines unless it is registered and insured.  Since you live in Indiana right now, that means you'd have to register it and pay taxes in Indiana then do the same thing again in Colorado.

Also, with a new (to you) car that you're unfamiliar with, unless you're a gearhead that knows what you're doing, the reliability of said vehicle to make it on a 2000 mile trip is unknown.

I would wait and buy a car at your destination.

People purchase cars across state lines all the time without having to register the vehicle twice.

It will be easier if you go through a dealership who can handle the registration paperwork for you and if you know the address where you'll be residing in Colorado before you purchase the vehicle (so they have all the info they need to fill out the forms). You'll also need that address for the new auto insurance policy. Also, just be aware that the fog testing requirements in Colorado depend on the county in which you will reside, and may differ from the requirements in Indiana.

Additional info at the Colorado DMV page:
http://www.dmv.org/co-colorado/car-registration.php

frugaliknowit

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Re: Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?
« Reply #6 on: January 20, 2015, 02:49:24 PM »
I would buy the car when you get to Colorado unless there is a compelling price difference.  You don't want to pay double registration fees.

mtn

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Re: Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?
« Reply #7 on: January 20, 2015, 02:54:47 PM »
Assuming that you can drive it on a temp tag (buy from a dealer to make it easier), there are basically 2 things that come to my mind:

To my knowledge, Colorado uses sand, not salt, and therefore the vehicle will be in better condition than an Indiana car where it is potentially been through some salty winters.
Per Angie below, I was wrong: Colorado primarily uses MgCl which is worse than the typical road salt in other states. Its sticky and hygroscopic. The worst combination.


However, a 4x4 will likely be a considerable amount more in Colorado than in Indiana, so do your research and see what the results are saying IF you intend to get 4x4.

« Last Edit: January 20, 2015, 03:03:10 PM by mtn »

Angie55

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Re: Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?
« Reply #8 on: January 20, 2015, 02:58:52 PM »
FYI Colorado primarily uses MgCl which is worse than the typical road salt in other states. Its sticky and hygroscopic. The worst combination.

If you are planning on buying a AWD or Subaru you may be better off buying in Indiana. Subarus are in high demand here and priced noticeably higher, especially in the winter.

pagoconcheques

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Re: Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?
« Reply #9 on: January 20, 2015, 04:07:40 PM »
Having lived in northern Indiana and visited Colorado a number of times, I suggest buying a used car in Colorado.  They salt roads like crazy in Indiana and cars rust accordingly.  Colorado gets plenty of snow but salts less or with something different and cars don't rust nearly as fast.  Just sayin'. 

Consider also the ease of inspection; get recommendations for a local independent mechanic and throw him a bone on a pre-purchase inspection so you can start developing a relationship.  Most used cars require some work within the first half-year of ownership anyway.

stor_stark

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Re: Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?
« Reply #10 on: January 21, 2015, 02:14:53 PM »
So I'm leaning towards waiting until I get to Denver to buy a used car, but I haven't completely decided yet. It would be nice to have that taken care of in Indiana before I leave, just to avoid having one more major thing to take care of before I start to work.

Any suggestions for getting rental agencies to waive 1-way rental drop off fees? If I rent for a longer period of time, then they would be more lenient on this type of stuff, right? That's what I'm hoping for at least.

JLee

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Re: Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?
« Reply #11 on: January 21, 2015, 02:56:01 PM »
Everything I've heard from people who live in Colorado (I have been into offroading for years) is that vehicles don't rust up there. I haven't lived there myself to say from first-hand experience, but I did come from northern NH where stuff rusted after only a few years.

stor_stark

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Re: Relocation: buy a car here or buy a car there?
« Reply #12 on: January 21, 2015, 03:50:41 PM »
Everything I've heard from people who live in Colorado (I have been into offroading for years) is that vehicles don't rust up there. I haven't lived there myself to say from first-hand experience, but I did come from northern NH where stuff rusted after only a few years.

I'm in northern Indiana now, and we tend to get a lot of precipitation --> rust here unfortunately.