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Registration Fees: Decode the Mystery of Vehicle Registration Costs

Date posted: 06/22/2012

by Alicia Sparks on
in Registration & Titling

293 Registration Fees: Decode the Mystery of Vehicle Registration CostsYou know you have to register your vehicle in order to legally drive it, and you know registration costs money. Yet, with so many variables that come into play when determining vehicle registration fees, it can be difficult to do the math. This page is a great start to clearing up the gray areas.

Usually, dealerships handle the vehicle registration process for car buyers, but if you –

  • Bought your vehicle from a private seller,
  • Received the vehicle as a gift or inheritance, or
  • Have just moved to the area,

– you’ll have to handle it yourself.

Standard Vehicle Registration Fees

Most states have a standard, base registration fee that includes a license plate and registration information like a card and sticker.

However, costs usually go up when drivers need:

Registration Fees for Other Vehicles

While standard registration fees for regular passenger cars and trucks are the same across the board, most states charge different fees for vehicles like:

Depending on the state, registration fees for these vehicles can be higher or lower than standard fees.

For example, Texas charges $50.75 to register a car and $30 to register a motorcycle. West Virginia charges $30 for a regular car registration and between $30 and $75 for boat registration.

You get the idea.

Additional Vehicle Registration Costs

As time passes, you’ll pay more costs related to your vehicle registration. Every year or so, depending on where you live, you’ll need to renew the registration. Some states allow drivers to renew their registration online, and there might be a service charge for that.

Plus, if you lose your registration card or sticker, you’ll probably have to pay a fee to replace it.

Want to save yourself some hassle? Contact your DMV before you head out the door. Be as specific as you can when describing your vehicle and personal situation so the agent can help you determine your exact registration fees.

How about you? What factors have affected your registration costs?

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About Alicia Sparks

Alicia Sparks is a freelance writer and editor with a passion for animal rights, mental health advocacy, and civil liberties. She loves yoga, tolerates running, attempts cooking, treats DMB concerts as national holidays, and dreams of the day when Timothy Olyphant and Kevin Spacey battle for her love. Check her out at More articles by Alicia Sparks

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