US Citizen from Sweden, adventures | OVERLAND BOUND COMMUNITY

US Citizen from Sweden, adventures

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andhai

Rank 0

Contributor I

60
Sweden
First Name
Andreas
Last Name
Hai
Hello people,

I've been a US citizen since birth, but never lived in the US. Shortly I will be moving there for new adventures and so on.

The plan is to be living out of a vehicle, at least initially. I am still trying to figure out a few practical issues. Since I have never lived in the US, I do not have either a current or previous registered address. Neither do I have any registered "tax information" or a bank account. I just got a SSN the other day. Ideally I would like to arrive in the US, set up a bank account and within a few days buy a vehicle and get going. I am not exactly sure what the process and requirements are for registering a new vehicle in your name over there.

As for a postal address the plan now is to use this: Mail Scanning, Virtual Mailbox & Mail Forwarding Services. I hope I will be able to register a vehicle on this address. If it makes any difference I can choose between several different states for the address through their website.

If anyone feels like going through the bare basics for what is required and maybe give a few pointers on how to go about, considering the somewhat special situation, that would be very much appreciated.

Thank you, Andreas
 
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Tundracamper

Rank VI
Member

Influencer I

3,068
Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA
First Name
Steve
Last Name
Shepard
Member #

22670

Every state has different rules on what is required to register a vehicle. Furthermore, you will need to pay sales tax based on where you “live,” which can differ by thousands of dollars depending on where that is. Not only that, some states and cities charge ad valorem taxes based on the value of the car, which is due annually. For example, when we lived in VA, our car tags cost over $3000 annually, including the taxes. When we moved to the south, they were like $300 per year. Do your research.

Not sure how to deal with the address issue. Banking and writing checks could be a challenge. You’ll obviously need to change over your driver’s license if you plan to stay.
 

andhai

Rank 0

Contributor I

60
Sweden
First Name
Andreas
Last Name
Hai
Thank you for the reply Tundracamper. That gave me a few new details to think about.

Lets say for example that I register a postal address in Texas and want to buy a vehicle from a private person in Washington (state), what would the process look like between the seller and I? What would have to be done initially before I would be allowed to drive the vehicle at all, and would I have to physically attend somewhere in Texas (in the example case) soon after the purchase to make some kind of registration?

Anyway, looking forward to the big adventure. These things even though they are just formalities, must be looked into as well of course.

Could you recommend a state in general that have beneficial regulations/requirements for living on the road?

Lots of questions.. thank you again.
 

andhai

Rank 0

Contributor I

60
Sweden
First Name
Andreas
Last Name
Hai
EDIT: Already found a page describing most of what was asked for in previous post.
 

Tundracamper

Rank VI
Member

Influencer I

3,068
Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA
First Name
Steve
Last Name
Shepard
Member #

22670

Yeah, I can’t provide specifics as it will vary by location. There is generally a grace period to get all that done as long as the vehicle is currently registered somewhere. Many people don’t realize, at least in my state, that the tag office will want proof that sales tax was paid to the state in which the vehicle is going to be registered. I know some states have a car sales tax that’s ridiculous, like 8%! If you don’t have proof, they hand you a bill that must be paid prior to getting a tag. That can be a bad unexpected bill when going in to register a vehicle. Again, just do your research and you will be fine.
 

El-Dracho

Mid Europe Member Rep Germany
Member
Expedition
Supporter

World Traveler II

9,320
Lampertheim, Germany
First Name
Bjoern
Last Name
Eldracher
Member #

20111

Ham Callsign
DO3BE
Hello people,

I've been a US citizen since birth, but never lived in the US. Shortly I will be moving there for new adventures and so on.

The plan is to be living out of a vehicle, at least initially. I am still trying to figure out a few practical issues. Since I have never lived in the US, I do not have either a current or previous registered address. Neither do I have any registered "tax information" or a bank account. I just got a SSN the other day. Ideally I would like to arrive in the US, set up a bank account and within a few days buy a vehicle and get going. I am not exactly sure what the process and requirements are for registering a new vehicle in your name over there.

As for a postal address the plan now is to use this: Mail Scanning, Virtual Mailbox & Mail Forwarding Services. I hope I will be able to register a vehicle on this address. If it makes any difference I can choose between several different states for the address through their website.

If anyone feels like going through the bare basics for what is required and maybe give a few pointers on how to go about, considering the somewhat special situation, that would be very much appreciated.

Thank you, Andreas
Hi Andreas,

Welcome to Overland Bound!

If you like, please feel free to introduce yourself here:


Look around the forum and you will find a lot of good information about overlanding here. There are also a few members who are - similar to your plans - full-time on the road. They will certainly be happy to give you more tips.


Cheers, Björn
 

caj13

Rank I

Enthusiast I

231
Auberry, CA, USA
First Name
carl
Last Name
johansson
Andreas,
welcome, I admire your plan, I'm thinking of doing just the reverse. One thing that might help you: It is very easy to title and register a vehicle in South Dakota - regardless of where you live, or where your drivers license is from. You can do it all by mail, and it is very cheap, and they are fast as well.
It's a trick I learned from the RVers living on the road - they can renew their registration each year by mail, without having to travel to South Dakota, or be inspected. I have registered my bus , my overland suburban, as well as a trailer and a side by side there, to avoid issues . I use Clay County as they have been very accommodating and fast in getting my stuff registered and titled.

That part is easy, but I do not know how they would deal with drivers licenses. I assume you will have an international license? I do not know how that would work in getting a vehicle registered. I'm sure it can be done - just have no idea how complex that process would be.
 
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Tundracamper

Rank VI
Member

Influencer I

3,068
Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA
First Name
Steve
Last Name
Shepard
Member #

22670

That’s a good idea to get advice from full time RVers - and I mean the ones that truly live in their rigs full time and don’t have a fixed residence.