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Old 10-19-2016, 07:19 AM   #1
New Member
Join Date: Sep 2016
Posts: 4
How does buying a bus work?

Ok maybe a silly question, but let me explain.

Simply put:

I show up to location X to buy a bus.
I pay for the bus.
Now I need to drive the bus to location Y, maybe 500 miles.
then the bus will be at location Y for maybe a year while we work on it.

Do I need insurance to drive it from X to Y?
When do I have to register it?
Do i need insurance when it's sitting in the back yard that whole year?
Do I need a CDL to drive it from X to Y?
I've never really owned a car, my wife had one when we met, I've rode bicycles my whole life, so i'm not familiar with any of this. Any help and advice would be greatly appreciated,

lastly, what about just taking my chances and driving it from x to y without insurance, registration, a CDL. And do all the paperwork after the finish the build?

Thanks in advance!

Faith and Dima
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Old 10-19-2016, 08:27 AM   #2
Bus Nut
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 736
Don't just: "I show up to location X to buy a bus". You better have someone inspect the bus as to mechanical condition. Read Read and read these forums and you will learn as others and i also do. You need to learn what engine/transmission you want as your choice NOT just "it's a good deal"!
Former owner of a 1969 F600 Skoolie.

1998 Ford B700 Thomas body 65 passenger. 5.9 Cummins 12 valve with MT643 Transmission 123,000 miles.
Versatile is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2016, 08:48 AM   #3
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: New England
Posts: 68
Year: 2003
Coachwork: AmTrans
Chassis: International
Engine: T444E
Varies state to state. In many states you can drive with regular drivers license if you register and insure it as a motor home. But first it must meet the definition of a motor home; ie. permanent bathroom, kitchen, etc. To drive it as a school bus or commercial vehicle you would need a CDL. The way I took care of it was to have the dealer deliver it with their dealer plate, then I converted it and registered it as a motor home. But as far as getting it home its really like buying any other vehicle. Depending on your state you probably have to at least insure it first, then have so many days to register, inspect, etc.

Hope this helps.
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Old 10-19-2016, 09:11 AM   #4
Bus Nut
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Join Date: May 2016
Location: Richmond Virginia
Posts: 932
Year: 1984
Engine: 366 Big block Chevy! :) w/ Stick shift
Where are you located? In VA we have a simple online permit for $5.

Good luck!
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Old 10-19-2016, 09:31 AM   #5
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Lowgap, N.C.
Posts: 17
Year: 2003
Coachwork: Amtran
Chassis: International
Engine: T444E 7.3
Rated Cap: 64
Insurance can be gathered with the vehicle description and VIN number. Each state has different DMV rules about registration and titling. I think consensus would tell you that if you had a valid license and insurance, most people would stick an IN-TRANSIT sign in the front and back windows and you should probably be all right as long as you have the title in hand. Check with your state on the CDL requirements, in NC it depends on weight of vehicle and an endorsement is required for air brakes. Find a friend with a CDL if that's an issue. Then you are pretty much covered.
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