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Long time, no see. Sadly back in June my Nissan finally kicked the bucket. Luckily for me, it happened a week before I was going to leave to travel for the summer and was going to either sell it as a parts car or take it to the scrapyard. Since then I've been traveling around on the East Coast with a friend (truck driver) but summer over and I'm headed to Dallas in a few days to stay with a friend. The plan is to pick up two jobs while I get myself back into writing (and take it more serious this time than I did in my 20's) and save up for a vehicle to live and travel in. For a few years, I planned on becoming a resident of South Dakota. In comparison to other states, it just seems it'll be better off for me. The question is should I save up the money, go to South Dakota, get residency, and then buy the vehicle. Or become a resident of Texas (currently a Michigan resident) even though I plan on being there for only a year with a P.O. box, buy it in Texas and drive it out to South Dakota and get everything switched over? Initially, it seems logical to wait. Less paperwork, less cost (getting my licenses switched twice in a year and a half or less, plate and registration fees twice, Texas inspection cost, etc.) so on and so forth. So I'm leaning strongly towards that but I figure I'll see if there are any downfalls or issues that may come up because of waiting that I didn't think of.
I think it depends on whether or not you plan to keep an actual physical residence/base in South Dakota or not.  If you're not going to keep a physical house/apartment/friend's home as a base to return to, and only plan to have a residential address through a mail forwarding service (for example), then I think it's smart to wait.  It only takes a day to get your official residency in South Dakota.  Here's an example of a guy on YouTube that just did it this summer.  

Good luck from someone in your same shoes (writer, saving up for a vehicle, planning to use S.D.)!
Eric from nomadic fanatic YouTube channel just did it . Took him less then 24 hours . I think it cost him 104 dollars to register his motor home. Go watch his video , it was done about a week ago
(10-03-2018, 03:41 PM)Jack Wrote: [ -> ]I think it depends on whether or not you plan to keep an actual physical residence/base in South Dakota or not.  If you're not going to keep a physical house/apartment/friend's home as a base to return to, and only plan to have a residential address through a mail forwarding service (for example), then I think it's smart to wait.  It only takes a day to get your official residency in South Dakota.  Here's an example of a guy on YouTube that just did it this summer.  

Good luck from someone in your same shoes (writer, saving up for a vehicle, planning to use S.D.)!

Pretty much my plan was to take a bus, train, or fly out there, stay the night, wake up, get an address at a mail forwarding service place, go get my SD licenses, go get the vehicle, and do all that paperwork. I'll most likely hang around SD for a month or so. Maybe even pick up a temporary job there as well before moving along. I figured waiting until I got out there to get the vehicle would be more logical money wise and time wise but figured see if anyone else ever done it and ran into issues. Thank you.
Thank you and good luck to you too! Maybe we'll bump into each other as we write our way across the country.  Big Grin
(10-03-2018, 06:08 PM)Smitty716 Wrote: [ -> ]Eric from nomadic fanatic YouTube channel just did it . Took him less then 24 hours . I think it cost him 104 dollars to register his motor home. Go watch his video , it was done about a week ago

Awesome! Thank you! I'll go watch it now. I like seeing and hearing about someone else's experiences before I do it myself so I can better prepare myself.
Dragonstar85,
Your plan will definitely make you a legitimate SD resident.
One of the listed steps, in Escapees' steps to establishing residency, is to make professional and social contacts in the community.
I think people have overlooked that important step, when they think of it as a fake residency or a shortcut to residency.
Don't be a ghost.
-Wayne
That sort of effort is only required if you were paying high taxes in your previous state, still have ties (time spent, property, vehicles, business, etc) there and they might want to fight your claim you are no longer a taxable Resident.

Many Escapees members are in that category, quarter million dollar rigs.

For the rest of us poors, there really aren't reasons for a state to try to "claim us", long as we do in fact keep moving.

But enroll in college or get a job in CA for example, or just hang out in one town too long the cops get to know you, may be a different story.
I am a resident of SD using a mail forwarding address in Box Elder (outside of Rapid City). The process is simple enough and very inexpensive. I think that there are significant advantages to choosing SD over Texas:

Texas requires a few extra steps for establishing residency; SD only needs a copy of your contract with the mail forwarding service, a copy of your receipt showing at least one night's stay in SD (hotel, motel, even a campsite will do...), and you will sign an affidavit stating that you intend to return to SD as your place of residency (or words to that effect).

Both states have zero income tax, so that is a wash. But SD has a lower sales tax and only an assessment (4%, it think) for titling your vehicle. Also (and this is important!), Texas requires an annual inspection whereas SD does not. You can renew your SD registration via the web, and they will mail your new decals or plates to you.

Vehicles under a certain value ($4000 perhaps? check the SD website) are exempt from from the assessment, so even better.

What you might consider is this: Don't bother changing your residency until your ready to go to SD. Buy a vehicle in Texas (it will likely be in better condition and cost less). If you buy it from a dealer, let them know that you intend to title it in SD: DO NOT PAY ANY SALES TAX IN TEXAS! Even if you don't have a temporary tag for the vehicle, you can still drive it to SD (contact an insurance agent who can provide you with a binder before you start your trip) where you will get your title and registration and then go to get your SD drivers license.

I've been a resident of SD since the spring of last year, and I'm quite happy with the experience and the cost. I'm also quite happy with the mail forwarding service that I'm using.

Best of luck,

Kramer
I moved to Texas almost 15 years ago and I still remember the loooong process of getting residency there which is why I was trying to avoid it as much as possible. I moved to Michigan 8 years ago so naturally ended up having everything switched over to Michigan. But at the moment I decided to go to Texas for a year since I have a place to stay there but trying to avoid having to get residency there since I'll be there just for a year to work and save up money. It just seemed like I would save myself a lot of headache, time, and money by working in Texas under my Michigan residency. But I think we all made the mistake of thinking doing something one way would make things easier and ended up being harder and costly. lol! One of my main reasons for avoiding having a vehicle in Texas is because of inspections. A guy I dated back when I lived there failed inspection with a car he just bought brand new. Thankfully for him, it was still under warranty so the computer glitch that made the car fail was fixed at no cost to him but he still had to go through inspection twice. 
Thank you, you answered another question I thought of as well last night. If I can buy the vehicle in TX, drive it to SD on temp plates, and get all the official paperwork and all that done there. And thank you for telling me how to do it even without having to get temp plates. I got thinking that SD gets snow just like Michigan and Michigan uses salt which is brutal to vehicles. I figured South Dakota uses salt as well. I know when I lived in Michigan I would buy cars from the South so rust all over the undercarriage and all down the lower sides of the car wouldn't be a concern really.
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