Reading Time: 10 minutes

In June of ‘22 the average transaction price for a new car was $48, 043, and there are no signs that there will be any significant decreases in the near future. Wouldn’t it be handy to know where the cheapest state to buy a car is when you are car shopping?

We have found the cheapest states to buy a used, or new car… Read on to see which are the best states to buy a car, and what states to avoid buying a car from.

Nationwide Auto Transportation can ship your new car from (nearly) anywhere in the USA… to your doorstep!

Where to Buy the Cheapest Cars: The Nationwide Auto Transportation Guide

It matters where you are planning to buy your new, or used, car from. The keyword here to keeping costs as low as possible is definitely ‘planning’. Why planning, you ask? You don’t want to end up buying a car from the most expensive state to buy a car because you went with the first one you saw right? Do your due diligence, research and planning before starting to look for the cheapest city to buy a new car.

Besides your home and your children’s education, your car is right up there with lifetime highest expenses, and if you were to buy a new vehicle as of today, the average price of $48, 000 according to KBB, may just come as a nasty surprise.

So honestly speaking, car buying can be an expensive exercise, and that is why buying a car from another state is becoming more and more popular amongst American car shoppers. If you are wondering how to find the cheapest place to buy a car online, this BLOG has a number of relevant articles.

What are the Best States to Buy a Car in?

To be honest, car buying in the USA is not as cheap as it has been in the past, but the internet has enlarged the car buying pool by thousands of vehicles that can be found on the internet, but physically are spread around the country, and even in foreign countries. This is the reason why numerous car buyers are opting to purchase their vehicles from another state, and then shipping them back home.

states where cars are cheaper

What is the Car Friendliest State?

Car costs are long term expenses that do not go away, even when your car is paid off. As long as you own a car, whether it is paid up, leased or on loan, you will still keep forking out dollars. Insurance, maintenance, and high gas prices all add up, and did you know that how much you will pay can depend on where you live?

Two of the car friendliest states are New Hampshire and Florida, and when compared to places like Alabama or Colorado, there is a considerable difference in costs, and prices for used, and to an extent, new cars.

cheapest place to get a car

What State Is The Cheapest To Buy A Car?

And the winner is… New Hampshire! When car buyers take everything into consideration, this is the best state to buy a car, and also the cheapest state to buy a car. The reason for this is that costs associated with car buying transactions in the state are surprisingly low. The state has no sales tax and the registration fees are among the lowest in the country. Click the following to see links for The Department of Motor Vehicles in 50 states.

You may ask why are cars so cheap in Florida? Well for starters, The Sunshine State is dotted with an inflated concentration of used car dealers, and this drives competition up, and keeps prices down. This classic example of supply and demand pricing has used car prices on average $1000 lower than in any other US state.

If you are looking into buying a new car from out of state, most of your research will be available online. Take for example: What do you do when you want to test drive a model or car type that you are interested in? Type the name and model of the car, and ‘for sale near me’, then choose the most convenient result to make an appointment for a test drive.

shopping for a car on eBay

What is the Cheapest State to Buy a Used Car?

Even though car prices are all heading skywards, (used car prices have soared by 35% since 2021) you could still save some money by finding a good deal on a used car. 

With this in mind, you may not live in the cheapest place to buy a car in the world, but there are certain states that are less expensive than others. It could save you to look for an out of state deal, but remember to budget for any added registration fees and shipping costs. To know what you will be paying for car shipping before you have even booked, use this free car shipping calculator

When you consider the average fees associated with buying a car these are the 5 cheapest states to buy a car.

5 States Where Cars Are Cheaper

  • Oregon — ($127)
  • Alaska — ($356)
  • New Hampshire — ($359)
  • Montana — ($724)
  • Hawaii — ($817)

Residents from California can check their car registration fees at the DMV website, and then check out the states with the highest car registration fees:

What 10 States has the Highest Car Registration Fees

  1. Florida – $22,500
  2. Montana – $21,700
  3. Iowa – $19,600
  4. Maryland – $13,500
  5. Oregon – $11,200
  6. Indiana – $10,100
  7. Alabama – $10,000
  8. Oklahoma – $9,600
  9. Connecticut – $8,800
  10. California – $8,600

Every vehicle that gets sold, or purchased, in the US has to be registered with the Department of Motor Vehicles, and then get fitted with a license plate (vehicle registration plate) before being legally allowed on our roads. The title fee of a vehicle is usually a one of payment at time of purchase, while licensing fees are paid annually, and varies between from state to state.

Each state has their own criteria for setting a price – some charge a flat fee while others base the fee on vehicle price, age, horsepower and even weight. Check with the DMV in your state for a more accurate price on your specific vehicle type and model.

What Are the Benefits of Buying a Car From Another State?

There are a number of reasons to look for the cheapest state to buy a car, and not just go to your local dealer. 

Some of the best states to buy a car will offer a same, or similar, vehicle type and model at a much better pricing structure than your local used car dealer might be able to offer you.

As you have seen from the information you have read so far, there are certainly some states that offer more advantages when you buy a vehicle from there. Take your time when you do your research… you have 50 states to choose from. 

By including states other than the one where you live, in your car shopping possibilities, you have a much larger pool of vehicles to choose from, and this increases your chances of big savings. This also applies to having your car repaired, or if you are looking to pimp your ride a bit.

Boat owners can follow the same principles, and Nationwide Auto Transportation can ship your car, boat or even ATV or motorbike to your chosen car transforming artist.

 best states to buy a car

Reasons for Buying a Car Out of State

When it comes to looking for a different car, whether new or used, your local dealer sometimes does not have the exact vehicle type, make, model or style that you are looking for. Why not let your fingers do the work on the internet and you could find exactly what you are looking for, just a state or two away. But what other reasons are there to buy a car from another state?

  • Incentives, demand and prices often differ from state to state. Some car types do better under the right circumstances. For example, convertibles are much less in demand in colder states, so if you’re from the south, you could just get a bargain on one. Trucks and four-wheel drive vehicles are in higher demand where it snows often, you may find a better deal in a warmer state.
  • There are states that offer more incentives depending on what type of car you are buying. Take advantage of any promotions on the car you are looking for to save.

When it comes to finding the cheapest place to get a car, in this next section you will learn about a fantastic way to save dollars when you are looking for a used car out of state.

What are Police Auto Auctions?

It does not matter if you are shopping for a used car on a super tight budget, or if you are looking for the best deal on a sports car, auctions and salvage auctions are a good option to consider. 

Many car buyers wrongly assume that these cars are all damaged beyond repair, or have some sort of crime stigma attached to them, but this does not always ring true. You could possibly get a really good sedan, or SUV, by visiting a police auction site.   

This ultimate car buying guide will help you decide what is the best car for your personality, budget and needs.

Did you know that many vehicles that are in pristine, or at least good and driveable, shape are sold on auctions across America every week? 

Why are Cars Auctioned?

Before getting to the reason why cars end up under the auctioneer’s hammer, let us glance at what type of auctions there are:

  • Closed or private auctions
  • Public auction
  • Government auctions
  • Online auctions

Online auctions are the norm today, and many auction houses, institutions and dealers are hosting these, and they are usually open to anyone who registers, even from other states. 

Reasons Why Cars are Sold on Auction

There are diverse reasons why cars end up being sold at auction and here are some of them:

  • It happens that a vehicle may stand on the dealer floor for a longer than required. To make space, these are often sold on an auction. Nationwide Auto Transportation are experts at Auction to Dealer shipping.
  • Repossessed cars are sold at auction to recoup the costs of default vehicle payments.
  • Private owners sell their vehicles at auction to try and get a better deal.
  • Insurance companies sell cars that have suffered accident or weather damage to recover costs after paying out insurance claims to the owners. Damage can include dents, scratches, electrical failure or issues with regards to incorrect winterizing of cars. Learn how to get your car ready for winter and save yourself a boatload of money.

Can you Buy a Bargain at an Auction?

Here is something that many of you don’t know! A good percentage of vehicles sold at auctions are actually in fairly good condition. Cars that have been repossessed, stolen, confiscated from criminals, or decommissioned by rental agencies or other large fleet companies, are often sold at an auction. If you have a good knowledge of cars, or take an expert with you for advice, you could end up with a bargain deal. It is sound advice to take your time, and keep account of any/all sales costs involved, just in case you find a car that suits you.

best states to buy a car

Whether you purchase online, or at a physical site, Nationwide Auto Transportation is your go to company for auction car shipping that is professional and affordable. Get hold of Nationwide for a free quote and valuable advice regarding how to ship your car from another state.

Although it can be a bit complicated when you buy a car from out of state, it is not unmanageable. Once you have a better understanding of the different requirements by the various states, you will feel more at ease, and in the next section we look at what to know when you consider buying a car from another state.

What should you know before buying a car out of state?

We have established that buying a car from another state has numerous advantages, like getting a good deal on a Ford 150 in Maine, when you stay in Alabama. It can however turn sour if you do not do your due diligence before signing anything. It is important to consider:

  • Insurance – speak to your broker for the best insurance advice
  • Emissions – Make sure that the car you are buying will pass the emission laws in your home state. California has the strictest laws, so if a car is Cali-friendly, it will more than likely be acceptable in your state. If you are shipping a car to The Golden State, it is prudent to check first.
  • Registration – You cannot drive an unregistered vehicle in the US, so if you are planning on driving your purchase home, make sure you have the correct documentation. A dealer will assist with the right documentation, and if you are looking to buy from a private seller, it is better to check what you need with your local DMV. The car’s VIN number is used to confirm that it is not stolen, or that it has been tampered with.
  • Sales Tax – Alaska, Delaware, Montana and New Hampshire do not require sales tax when you register your vehicle there. 
  • How do you get your car home – The first thing you need to get would be a temporary registration in order to drive the car back home. A better choice would be to employ the services of a reputable car shipping company. Many dealers form close relationships with car shipping companies like Nationwide Auto Transportation, which just means you end up a winner at both ends of the deal.
states where cars are cheaper

And the Cheapest State to Buy a Car is…

New Hampshire is the overall winner in the cheapest state to buy a car race because of the state’s super low registration fees, and no sales tax. Florida slides into second place with a diverse inventory, and car prices that are 10% below the national average. It also happens to be on the highest end of the scale when it comes to vehicle registration, and title fees.

Florida is the second cheapest state to buy a car, and the state has a wonderful inventory. In fact, cars cost around ten percent less than the county’s average. Alas, registration fees, taxes and title fees are the highest in the US.

 best states to buy a car

Ship Your Car From the Best States to Buy a Car

Your options are diverse and varied and we wish you the best of luck with your purchase. Always remember that Nationwide Auto Transportation will safely transport your car, whether you bought it from a state that is 2000 miles away, or to your neighbor state, only a few hundred miles away.

Contact us Now!