Can You Buy a Car in New Jersey if You Live in New York?

When searching for a new or used car that’s just right, sometimes you need to expand your search radius to find the best option for you. For New York residents, that can mean making a trip into New Jersey to see what New Jersey dealerships have to offer. If you’re a New York resident looking for car, New Jersey State Auto Used Cars is here to help you ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible.

Find a Reputable Dealer

Any time you’re making a car purchase under unusual circumstances, such as buying across state lines, it is helpful to have the guidance of a professional you can rely on. By opting to purchase from a dealership, and one with a strong reputation of caring for its customers, you can breathe easy knowing that your dealer is looking out for your interests and will provide you with everything you need to safely and legally get your car home.

When making a purchase from a New Jersey dealership, it’s important to let the representatives know that you are making a purchase but live in New York. An experienced auto sales professional will know how to take care of you throughout the sales process to ensure that your purchase goes smoothly.

buy used car in new Jersey

Try it Out

Taking a car for a test drive is always a good idea, but particularly when you’ve come from another state to check your vehicle out. With your drive home you’ll know immediately if you made the right choice or not, so it’s best to be positive before you make your final decision. Taking a test drive lets you see how the car feels under your control and trying a few cars on the lot can help you find just the right match.

Get a History Report

As with a purchase in-state, it’s important to get as much information on the car you are buying prior to committing to the purchase. Ask your dealer to provide you with a history report and maintenance records when purchasing a used car. This allows you to check the car’s condition and gain a fuller appreciation of the vehicle you’re buying to make sure you’ll truly love it.

Ask About Temporary Registration

The most important consideration when making an out-of-state purchase is ensuring that your new car is street legal between when you make your purchase and when you can get it home to register it with the state of New York. This is where purchasing from a dealership is so beneficial, as car dealerships are used to working with customers from other states and are well set up to make your experience as easy as possible.

The most common solution, and also the easiest for you as a purchaser, is temporary registration for your new vehicle provided by the dealership. This provides you with a window during which you can legally drive the car you purchased, allowing you to get your purchased vehicle back to New York, and to get to the DMV or the online portal to register your vehicle with the state of New York.

Apply For Trip Permits

If you aren’t given a temporary registration for the vehicle, it’s important to make sure that your car is still legal to avoid the risk of ticketing or fines on your drive home. A trip permit from New Jersey and New York allows you to apply for a permit that lets you legally transport your car from where you bought it to your home, where you can then work on getting it registered with New York state.

Get Your Car Covered

Although a trip permit or temporary registration will allow you to take your car home, once you do, it’s time to move on to getting your car registered officially. The state of New York requires any vehicle being registered in the state to carry active car insurance. Find the insurance provider that offers you the best coverage and activate your new policy for your new vehicle as quickly as possible so that you can move forward in the registration process and get your car back out on the road.

Register Your Car in New York

Once you have found an insurer and made a payment to activate your coverage you are ready to formally register your car in New York. In order to prove your ownership of the vehicle, the state requires you to submit documentation that verifies you are now its legal owner. While the specific documents can vary by vehicle type, you can use this guide to determine what documents you’ll need.

After receiving your documents, the state will process your registration and provide you with the documents you need to prove your new legally registered vehicle. In addition to registration documents, you will also receive your license plates and a registration sticker to display on your car.

Get an Inspection

When you receive your registration documents they will come with a ten day registration sticker. While this will allow you to legally drive your vehicle for ten days after you receive the sticker, you need to take your car in for an inspection before the ten days are up. Once your car has passed a New York state inspection it is formally approved for use and you can drive knowing that you don’t have to worry about being pulled over due to your insurance, registration, or inspection status.

Here at New Jersey State Auto, we are proud to be a leading provider of used cars to residents of both New Jersey and New York. We hope this guide is able to help you plan your next car purchase and make it as smooth as possible, and we are here to help if you have any questions about the process of buying a car in New Jersey as a New York resident. Just get in touch or come out to see us and we’ll help you find the car you’re searching for today!