Broadening your car options to interstate sales opens up a more comprehensive range of options for your dream car at the right price. Some states may sell cars cheaper than others and can be very tempting, but you need to factor in some differences to see how much you’re saving. Here are some things to consider when buying an interstate car.
Verify the quality of the car
It is no easy matter to inspect an interstate car and give it a test drive in person. Putting your faith in buying a vehicle you haven’t fully inspected and are confident in can be a substantial financial risk. The first thing you should do is get a background check on the vehicle’s history through the Personal Property Securities Register. These services are available from the government, and will make sure the car is:
- Not stolen or illegitimately obtained
- Free from outstanding debt
- Safe from repossession
- Not written off
Once that’s all clear, we highly recommend you hire a trusted local mechanic to conduct a full-service car inspection or organise an inspection from the state’s relevant Roadside Authority, such as NRMA. Pictures can be very deceiving, and you may not know the car’s full history, any under-the-hood damage or any existing problems it may have. You can also pre-purchase car inspections to take the guesswork out of costs. The risk of buying a car without a proper assessment is too high. Hiring these services typically cost between $200 – $300, but the difference in potential profit versus loss is significant.
Sorting out the paperwork
There are a few extra steps when it comes to buying a car interstate. You have to sort the insurance out and change the registration into your name. Australia’s car laws vary between states so you’ll need to check for the differences. For example, the difference between a car rego check in Sydney vs somewhere else. If you’re driving it back, you’ll likely need an Unregistered vehicle permit which allows you to have CTP insurance while transporting the vehicle. If you’re planning to get it delivered to you, you won’t need to worry about this permit. Your government will also explain whether you’ll need a new license plate or not. Registering an interstate car in NSW isn’t a complicated process, but it can take a while so be patient.
Getting the car to you
If you decide to go with a freight delivery back to your state, you must factor in your vehicle’s travel distance and size. If you’re transporting from Western Australia to NSW, it will not be a cheap trip. Always get a quote of the transportation before buying the vehicle. The last thing you want to happen is to save some money on a cheap car, but shell out a lot just to get it to you.
Should you purchase a car interstate? Why not? Broadening your range to buy a used car or new car may help you find your dream make and model at a great price. Take into consideration these tips and judge for yourself whether the extra expenses are worth the care and effort, or if a local car is easier to manage for you.