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Old 05-20-2014, 09:41 AM   #1
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Register MH in new state to save $$$$

First, my coach is registered in MI....BIG $$$$$ for plate renewal...e.g. based on MSRP!!!!! Every year!

For me, this is $800 based on a $156k MSRP in 1999.

Second, the coach is stored in OH. Has never seen MI since purchased.

Well, I was in a real sour mood with the plate renewal not too far off and was moaning to my brother in law and his friend as we were rehabbing his shed and driveway.

The friend told me to see my lender and have them transfer the address to my brother in laws place and renew plates in OH that has very low plate renewal costs. He told me they have to do it. They cannot say no. More like a second residence type of thing.

If my sister/brother in law agree to let me use their address as my 2nd, I'd like to try it.

My lender has many branches in OH..FYI

Comments?
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Old 05-20-2014, 09:46 AM   #2
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There are a lot of people that register MH's and speciality vehicles in Montana. MT has very favorable fees and regulations for vehicles. You's need a good MT attorney that will set up an LLC and a mailing address and you'll need to open a bank account there. All of this can be handled by the attorney. This may sound like a lot of work but its not. My son in law just registered a road/track car that he built and couldn't register in CT where he lives. If you are interested PM me and I'll get you the contact info for the attorney he used.
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Old 05-20-2014, 10:01 AM   #3
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You can register your coach in any state you want BUT if you store the unit in your state for any length of time the out of state plates may draw attention and you may get investigated for tax evasion and don't be fooled, states are desperate for income sources and some states zealous are on the lookout for this known type of fraud.

RV's carrying a Montana plate are probably the biggest red flags to states looking out for this abuse since you pay no sales tax on RV's registered to a company (LLC) in Montana. That is the real reason people register their $300+K motorhomes there - to save on sales tax. However their low plate fees help out too but I wouldn't move a coach that has already had sales tax paid on it to Montana since there are plenty of states with low plate fees and you don't need the added expense of the LLC to own the coach.

As far as hiring an attorney to set up an LLC, that is a unnecessary expense. You can use any of the internet companies like INCFile, they will set up your LLC and get you a registered agent. Bank accounts can be done through national banks with you at the local office but setting up the account through a branch they have in Montana. Remember that once you have the LLC set up you have to continue paying the LLC fees and the registered agent fees each year, so this is an added expense that usually negates whatever saving you might have on plate fees.

Please remember that if the only reason you are registering your motorhome in Montana is to save on sales tax you are breaking the law and can be prosecuted if found out. The fines and possibly jail time can easily trump the savings you get. As with everything you must weight the risk.
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Old 05-20-2014, 10:16 AM   #4
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Never mind
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Old 05-20-2014, 11:08 AM   #5
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I think I would just stay with registering the coach in OH with OH plates and not MI. It is already stored in OH.

Just wondering if anyone has done this.
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Old 05-20-2014, 11:38 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by Bad Bolt View Post
First, my coach is registered in MI....BIG $$$$$ for plate renewal...e.g. based on MSRP!!!!! Every year!

For me, this is $800 based on a $156k MSRP in 1999.

Second, the coach is stored in OH. Has never seen MI since purchased.

Well, I was in a real sour mood with the plate renewal not too far off and was moaning to my brother in law and his friend as we were rehabbing his shed and driveway.

The friend told me to see my lender and have them transfer the address to my brother in laws place and renew plates in OH that has very low plate renewal costs. He told me they have to do it. They cannot say no. More like a second residence type of thing.

If my sister/brother in law agree to let me use their address as my 2nd, I'd like to try it.

My lender has many branches in OH..FYI

Comments?
This has been discussed seemingly endlessly on this site and others. Stuff like "you can register your vehicle in ANY state you want" or "Set up a LLC in Montana" etc. Regardless of what you read here, it really all depends on the state that YOU live in. If it was completely legal and above board to register your vehicle "anywhere" then why aren't Michigan streets and highways just filled with Ohio plated cars and trucks. I am sure that MI considers the motor home a motor vehicle. Granted there are some states that will let you register a vehicle in their state without being a resident, it still comes down to what does Michigan say about a resident of MI registering their vehicle out of state to AVOID taxes! Granted the MI tax rate is overly high, and I feel bad for you, but just be careful. The penalty for this kinda stuff is always, always greater then whatever you saved or thought you were going to save.
Again, it all boils down to you being a Michigan resident and what Michigan laws are, not Montana's or Florida's or any other state
Good luck.
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Old 05-20-2014, 12:08 PM   #7
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So if I bought my MH new the tag fee would be around $800 a year, but since I bought it used it is $280 a year. Same MH, but one person is paying $520 more to tag theirs than the other. That's crazy!!
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Old 05-20-2014, 12:23 PM   #8
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...
Again, it all boils down to you being a Michigan resident and what Michigan laws are, not Montana's or Florida's or any other state
Good luck.
No, it all boils down to where the vehicle is primarily garaged when its not in use. That theory is pretty much universal among all states. While I agree, you just cant choose any state and reg your vehicle there to avoid fees, there are many 2nd & 3rd homeowners who keep a spare vehicle garaged, licensed & insured in their part time seasonal state.
SD is my permanent home state and 8 of my 10 vehicles are reg there, as well as my DL. But I keep a Jeep at my part time summer home in Co and its required to be reg & insured in Co. I also keep a spare pickup at my winter ranch in NM and its required to be registered/insured in NM. This was all confirmed & agreed to by both SD, CO & NM authorities.

edit: both Co & Nm required me to show docs that I owned property in the state, before agreeing to reg those out of state vehicles.

PS to OP: if this rig is insured under your Mi address but permanently stored in OH, you could find yourself denied coverage if damaged while stored in OH. Make sure your agent knows where you store the rig when not in use, it has a direct impact on insur.
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Old 05-20-2014, 12:31 PM   #9
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Why not register your MH with your brother? Using his address, register it as Me (your name) Brother (his name) a joint owner register vehicle. No laws broken, MI plate fee savings.
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Old 05-20-2014, 12:49 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by LSMITH2509 View Post
Why not register your MH with your brother? Using his address, register it as Me (your name) Brother (his name) a joint owner register vehicle. No laws broken, MI plate fee savings.

Because that would make the brother also liable for any law suits that may be applied due to an accident or such.

Another problem with this is that if the OP has an Ohio drivers license and permanent home address (voting rights) and if any occasion arises where a LEO requires "license and registration please" he will find that the OP and the mh have different addresses......can and probably will lead to some legal ramifications.
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Old 05-20-2014, 01:25 PM   #11
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There have been several cases of folks purchasing and/or registering in a different state to avoid taxes.. I know MICHIGAN has looked into prosecution of these people.. I do NOT know what they decided to do.

I can tell you states that HAVE prosecuted.. You end up paying WAY more than you save.
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Old 05-20-2014, 01:32 PM   #12
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... if any occasion arises where a LEO requires "license and registration please" he will find that the OP and the mh have different addresses......can and probably will lead to some legal ramifications.
No, its perfectly normal & accepted that many folks have valid & perfectly legal reasons to have DL and vehicle reg from different states. You can only have one valid DL at a time, from your domicile state; but you could own homes and vehicles based in every one of the 50 states at the same time. I've been stopped many times with my SD drivers lic and either my CO or NM vehicle reg without any problems from the LEO. Most times they don't even ask why, but a few do and readily accept that I'm retired and have 3 homes in 3 diff states, with vehicles based at each. All they care about is that my DL and reg are valid, current and insured.

edit: but yes, if you fraudulently reg outside of the state where you permanently live/work, then you could get in trouble
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Old 05-20-2014, 02:50 PM   #13
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This has been discussed seemingly endlessly on this site and others. Stuff like "you can register your vehicle in ANY state you want" or "Set up a LLC in Montana" etc. Regardless of what you read here, it really all depends on the state that YOU live in. If it was completely legal and above board to register your vehicle "anywhere" then why aren't Michigan streets and highways just filled with Ohio plated cars and trucks. I am sure that MI considers the motor home a motor vehicle. Granted there are some states that will let you register a vehicle in their state without being a resident, it still comes down to what does Michigan say about a resident of MI registering their vehicle out of state to AVOID taxes! Granted the MI tax rate is overly high, and I feel bad for you, but just be careful. The penalty for this kinda stuff is always, always greater then whatever you saved or thought you were going to save.
Again, it all boils down to you being a Michigan resident and what Michigan laws are, not Montana's or Florida's or any other state
Good luck.
I do seek to AVOID taxes at all costs, within the law. However, these are annual fees.

I shall attempt to AVOID annual burdensome fees, as well.
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Old 05-20-2014, 02:54 PM   #14
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So if I bought my MH new the tag fee would be around $800 a year, but since I bought it used it is $280 a year. Same MH, but one person is paying $520 more to tag theirs than the other. That's crazy!!
Michigan bases the annual plate renewal fee on manufacturer's MSRP. My registration has the "category" set to 155 ($155,000.00).

I just got off the phone with the DMV and was told my renewal is $786!!!!!

I asked: "...every year?..."

Reply: "...yes..."
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