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Old 04-29-2019, 01:02 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jun 2018
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Skoolie Finance Curveball...help!

Hi all! I've enjoyed learning from everyone and finally found a bus we want. We have to work out a few kinks in finances to get it, but we are hopeful it will be coming home with us. We learned on Friday that in order to borrow against our retirement account (which is what will get our skoolie path started), we have to purchase a Titled RV. Which isn't what we were told a year ago when we first started planning this adventure. 🤬

I've been researching and saving info about registration and insurance for the last two years. But now I find myself stressing and scrambling.😬

It seems that people are registering their buses outside of their home state. For example, a few have mentioned how easy Vermont is to register in. Can we register outside of our own state? The bus we want is in FL (we live in LA) and the owner is checking into registering the bus as an RV in FL. So, if it is registered in another state, can we insure it here in LA?

Sorry, I'm just getting myself even more confused now. 😜
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Old 04-29-2019, 05:41 PM   #2
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Nearly every state has laws that require you to register locally once the vehicle is in use there for X days or months.

Some enforce it stringently, others are slack.

Very few states allow non-residents to register - actually it's more, where the vehicle is regularly "garaged", many people have multiple homes in different states.

I don't know if any do mail order rego like Vermont.

Insurance also complicates things.

So, the only simple answer is, "it depends".

The state you live in, the state you want to register, your living / usage situation, etc.

Maybe a separate thread with the specifics in the title will get better answers from members with experience there.
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Old 04-29-2019, 05:44 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Crowlp View Post
The bus we want is in FL (we live in LA) and the owner is checking into registering the bus as an RV in FL. So, if it is registered in another state, can we insure it here in LA?
Where the bus is currently located should not be a factor.

Use a state because it is easy, or nearby.

Are you **sure** LA is that difficult?

KISS applies, start with the easiest simplest most straightforward path, maybe no heroic measures are needed.
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Old 04-29-2019, 05:53 PM   #4
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Join Date: May 2016
Location: Eastern WA
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Year: 2002
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Insurance does not care where the bus is registered. They care where it is garaged.

If I have two homes and I register my bus in Washington but keep it at my Florida home most of the time then they will want to have it insured in Florida.

In my experience, they don't care how it is titled either. They care about how you use it.
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Old 04-29-2019, 06:07 PM   #5
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I Misspoke

I guess I should have said TITLED as an RV. I don't know why I keep saying registration.

From what I could get from the DMV's today, re-titling the bus is going to be an uphill battle because of our need to have it titled before we can borrow against our retirement.

LA has no clue about Skoolies. Best I can gather is that it would need a physical inspection.

Florida said they will email me what they need.

The bus is presently titled as a bus in FL. It has been stripped inside. No seats, even the driver seat. Insulation and flooring down with some rough framing. No way it will pass inspection if they need a physical one.
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Old 04-29-2019, 06:25 PM   #6
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Join Date: May 2016
Location: Eastern WA
Posts: 5,648
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Bluebird
Chassis: All American RE (A3RE)
Engine: Cummins ISC (8.3)
Rated Cap: 72
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crowlp View Post
I guess I should have said TITLED as an RV. I don't know why I keep saying registration.

From what I could get from the DMV's today, re-titling the bus is going to be an uphill battle because of our need to have it titled before we can borrow against our retirement.

LA has no clue about Skoolies. Best I can gather is that it would need a physical inspection.

Florida said they will email me what they need.

The bus is presently titled as a bus in FL. It has been stripped inside. No seats, even the driver seat. Insulation and flooring down with some rough framing. No way it will pass inspection if they need a physical one.
I asked my insurance agent and she confirmed that body type on the title and registration are of no concern to them. They care about how you use it and where it is "garaged".

I have titled and registered all of my buses as soon as I got them for two reasons. Tabs are much cheaper for an RV and here in WA and if it is titled as a bus and has a gvrw of over 26k lbs it IS considered a commercial vehicle and requires a CDL. This varies by state. Check with your licencing office and find what goes in your state.
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