Buying a car can be challenging for anyone. For the average person looking for a new vehicle, it could mean test driving numerous cars either at dealerships or through private sellers in search of the best deal. For most people, that means looking at vehicles that aren’t far from home.

However, if you are looking for the PERFECT car or deal, sometimes you might choose to widen your net. The power of the internet means that you can find and purchase a vehicle from anywhere these days.

What happens, though, if your perfect deal and perfect vehicle are in another state, a long distance away?

You either have to drive it home, or have it shipped. Although shipping may cost more, it may be the solution if you have found your dream car. 

Buying a car can be challenging for anyone. For the average person looking for a new vehicle, it could mean test driving numerous cars either at dealerships or through private sellers in search of the best deal. For most people, that means looking at vehicles that aren’t far from home.

However, if you are looking for the PERFECT car or deal, sometimes you might choose to widen your net. The power of the internet means that you can find and purchase a vehicle from anywhere these days.

What happens, though, if your perfect deal and perfect vehicle are in another state, a long distance away?

You either have to drive it home, or have it shipped. Although shipping may cost more, it may be the solution if you have found your dream car. 

Pros and cons of distant car purchases infographic

The Perfect Vehicle
The best reason for purchasing a car from another state is that you want a specific, unique, car that can’t be found near you. If either of these statements apply to you, then your best option might be to widen your search beyond the borders of your home state:

  • You want an outstanding example of an older or used car. One with low mileage and little damage from road elements like salt. 
  • You want to purchase a unique vehicle—something special that only exists in small amounts and can’t be found everywhere.

If you are investing time and money in finding this ideal vehicle, and you want to ensure that it arrives in good condition, then you will also want to find a car shipping company that has the skill and expertise to move unique vehicles safely and with a love of cars. While it will add somewhat to your costs, it will be worth it to hire the best. 

Saving Money
Another possible reason to purchase a car from out of state is money, of course, but this can be complicated by an interaction of certain facts.

  • Fact 1: Because some cars are more popular in some states over other states, it may be to your benefit to search beyond your state for vehicles popular in your state. The prices might be lower in another state.
  • Fact 2: Car prices and overall costs differ from state to state. For example, the best state for the initial cost (10% lower than other states) is Florida. Oregon has the lowest unexpected fees. The best state overall for car purchases is New Hampshire. For a more specific breakdown of some of the variations, click over to this article on Car and Driver.
  • Fact 3: While you could save a lot of money purchasing a car in a state that has no sales tax, the unfortunate truth is that you actually pay the sales tax to the state where you are registering your car. Be aware of what the laws are in both states.
  • Fact 4: You may think that driving your car home will also save you money, but that can also include additional costs—a flight to get the car, perhaps hotels and food, etc. Still, shipping costs money as well, so you should factor that into your final costs. Ultimately, the decision to ship or to drive comes down to what best suits your needs. 

As you can see, the financial benefits of buying a car out of state depend on a variety of factors. Be sure you know the rules and regulations of both states before you decide.


Complexity
Perhaps the biggest negative about purchasing a car out of state is that it can be complex. If you buy from a dealer, they can help you work through the paperwork and specifics.

However, if you buy through a private sale, there are things you need to know:

  • Each state has different rules regarding things like sales tax, registration, and emissions. Know the rules before you purchase.
  • If you plan to drive your car back to your home state, then you will need to obtain a temporary registration. A dealership can take care of this for you. Without them, you will have to work with the DM, either in your home state or the state of purchase. We all know how much fun that can be, don’t we?

Choose ShipLux, the Easiest Solution
We have an easy solution for some of this complexity. When you’ve made your decision, and purchased your dream car from another state, do a little more research to find the best auto shipping company for your needs.

Compare and contrast, and then choose ShipLux

Get a price quote! Talk to our agents about any of your concerns or questions. Here at ShipLux we pride ourselves in meeting your needs, and treating your new vehicle like our own.

Go ahead, find that perfect vehicle, no matter where it is. We are here to help you get it home.