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Old 04-20-2017, 10:04 PM
 
35 posts, read 45,900 times
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To set the stage, I am active duty currently a Texas resident, living in Northern Virginia. I recently purchased. House in South Carolina because I will be stationed there this summer.

I am planning on buying a new car from a dealer in Maryland. Where is the best/cheapest place to get the car registered in terms of paying all of the associated tax, tags, license fees?

If I need to provide more information, please let me know. I am not really sure where to start.
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Old 04-21-2017, 05:31 AM
 
Location: Richmond, VA
2,345 posts, read 3,692,668 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brownnugen View Post
To set the stage, I am active duty currently a Texas resident, living in Northern Virginia. I recently purchased. House in South Carolina because I will be stationed there this summer.

I am planning on buying a new car from a dealer in Maryland. Where is the best/cheapest place to get the car registered in terms of paying all of the associated tax, tags, license fees?

If I need to provide more information, please let me know. I am not really sure where to start.
The purpose of car registration is so your state can both tax and track your vehicle.

People may try to game that system, but I wouldn't be really comfortable with that.

You're a Texas resident, *currently* stationed in Virginia. You don't live in Maryland and you don't live in South Carolina yet. You can't register in Maryland, full stop (you have neither military residency or actual residency and can't establish it just because you buy there), and you shouldn't register in SC until you're actually there-and when you PCS, VA won't be an option anymore.

Sales tax is based on where you register (which should be residency-either your legal residency or where you are physically stationed), not where you buy or someday plan to be.

Now that I've said all that, you can do the basic research. Once you find the state information, you can google their DMV and see if they offer a break for active duty. But just looking at this chart it looks like SC will come out the cheapest, so I'd wait and do it once you get there. If you can't wait, Virginia looks like your next best bet:

http://www.automotive-fleet.com/fc_r...ax-title-2.pdf
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Old 04-21-2017, 06:24 AM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
22,402 posts, read 48,114,706 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brownnugen View Post
To set the stage, I am active duty currently a Texas resident, living in Northern Virginia.
I recently purchased. House in South Carolina because I will be stationed there this summer.

I am planning on buying a new car from a dealer in Maryland.

Where is the best/cheapest place to get the car registered
in terms of paying all of the associated tax, tags, license fees?
First... the MD taxes are associated to the TITLE (not the registration)...
which is done on a one time 5% excise tax basis (a better deal).

VA taxes the sale for titling are as well but they do a recurring annual personal property tax deal.
This costs less up front but will cost more over time.

Both states (all of them) charge separately for registration and tags.

The Q is how SC will deal with you when you NEED to change the title there.
Most states will credit for excise tax paid but it can get complicated fast.

The deeper Q is whether you can postpone the purchase until you get to SC
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Old 04-21-2017, 06:44 AM
Status: "Irie" (set 25 days ago)
 
526 posts, read 200,265 times
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I would personally avoid registering it in VA just because of the personal property taxes. Not sure if it is possible or the best $ solution but can you buy the vehicle in MD and register in TX without having to go to TX? Probably not, but who knows?
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Old 04-21-2017, 07:34 AM
 
Location: New Mexico U.S.A.
22,313 posts, read 33,192,370 times
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When I entered the military I was a legal resident of Florida. I kept all my vehicles registered in Florida until I retired, 22 years later. Florida did not have high annual fees. When I purchased a vehicle, I was exempt from Florida sales tax, as long as I was not living in Florida. I retired in 1990, so I have no doubt things have changed...

The taxes on the purchase of the vehicle will be the most expensive item.

When I was stationed in Maryland a lot of people were registering their vehicles in Virginia because they claimed it was cheaper.

When I purchased an aircraft registered in VA, I was stationed in MD, and lived in PA... Everyone was trying get registration fees from me...

I would stay with your Home Of Record, Texas, but some dealers will make things difficult if you buy in another state. There are, or were, some exemptions for military personnel.

You might take a look at these sites:

Registration and Title Fees By State
Tax & Tags Calculator for New & Used Cars | DMV.org
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Last edited by Poncho_NM; 04-22-2017 at 12:08 PM..
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Old 04-21-2017, 12:01 PM
 
1,833 posts, read 3,706,527 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MedvedActual View Post
I would personally avoid registering it in VA just because of the personal property taxes. Not sure if it is possible or the best $ solution but can you buy the vehicle in MD and register in TX without having to go to TX? Probably not, but who knows?
Each time my husband and I have purchased vehicles at our duty station, we have had to pay the initial taxes on the sale of the vehicle. We have never had to pay personal property taxes on the vehicle when we have had to renew our tags.
I have noticed that dealerships do not like to transfer tags from another state to the new vehicle too. Depending on if the tag renewal goes up on our vehicles, we may register our vehicles in our HOR.
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Old 04-21-2017, 08:48 PM
 
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Home of record. Register it there.
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Old 04-22-2017, 08:08 AM
 
Location: Columbia SC
6,129 posts, read 4,664,836 times
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Consider waiting to buy in SC. SC limits sales tax on automobile purchases to 5% or a max of $300. That would be $300 on a $6K car and $300 on a $36K car.
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Old 04-22-2017, 09:17 AM
 
9,752 posts, read 9,556,617 times
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Register in your home of record.
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Old 04-22-2017, 09:21 AM
 
1,833 posts, read 3,706,527 times
Reputation: 1060
Quote:
Originally Posted by johngolf View Post
Consider waiting to buy in SC. SC limits sales tax on automobile purchases to 5% or a max of $300. That would be $300 on a $6K car and $300 on a $36K car.
This is something to consider. Sometimes I wished we would have purchased in NC before coming out to where we are. It would have saved us about 6 1/2% in taxes.
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