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Old 12-11-2010, 12:43 PM   #1
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Colorado Owner - NM Title & License?

We've ordered a 2011 FC23FB from a dealer in New Mexico. He advises us that under the New Mexico "Snowbird Law", many buyers from SW Colorado elect to title and license their travel trailer in New Mexico. The tax savings are significant. I'd appreciate hearing from any Colorado owners who have done this.
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Old 12-11-2010, 01:31 PM   #2
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Many here in Texas (elsewhere too) use Montana for the same reasons. Don't know about N.M.
Sailing? Camping?...Airstreams?....Colorado?....you are my kind of people.
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Old 12-11-2010, 04:53 PM   #3
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I believe NM registration is a lot cheaper than Colorado, but when your neighbors see that NM plate, they may not like it and turn you in. When Colorado finds out you actually live here, they may not like it either.

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Old 12-11-2010, 06:29 PM   #4
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Best to check further, a lot of people used to register their rigs in Oregon because of the lack of sales tax (some even used phoney "co-owners"). Once WA State got on the ball, a lot of people found themselves owing a ton of cash!
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Old 12-11-2010, 09:16 PM   #5
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I have friends here that have their RV's registered and licensed in Montana for tax/liability reasons, and have no problems.
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Old 12-11-2010, 09:40 PM   #6
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You can buy it without NM sales tax when you show the dealer your CO drivers license. When you register in CO, it's 2.9% sales tax.

Use CO roads, pay CO taxes!
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Old 12-11-2010, 10:01 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Denis4x4 View Post
You can buy it without NM sales tax when you show the dealer your CO drivers license. When you register in CO, it's 2.9% sales tax.

Use CO roads, pay CO taxes!
That's cheap, it's 6% in Texas.
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Old 12-12-2010, 08:06 AM   #8
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It's not that easy to register one in NM because you'll need to document residency here.

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Old 12-12-2010, 11:25 AM   #9
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Ahh, "Use CO roads, pay CO taxes!" was bound to come up. No offense. I want to be correct and fair in this transaction, that's why I addressed the enquiry to owners who purchased in NM and live in CO.

We are 'snowbirds' who own a home in Durango, and spend 7-8 months away each year.
Five months on our sailboat in the Caribbean, 2-3 months traveling the USA. We use our CO home and CO roads for 4 or 5 months, and pay taxes and fees for 12 months. I think that's a pretty good deal for CO. In the other states, (as in CO) we all pay for road use each time we fill our tanks. "For the first quarter of 2009, the mean state gasoline tax is 27.2 cents per US gallon, plus 18.4 cents per US gallon federal tax making the total 45.6 cents per US gallon" - wikipedia.org.

La Plata County CO taxes, title and registration came to just over 6% for our Casita (now sold). The Casita spent 80% of it's life out of CO. Our Airstream will have a similar life. It will be stored in NM for 5-6 months each year while we cruise our sailboat (currently in Isla Mujeres, Mexico). According to my NM dealer, three months of 'presence in NM' (you can only be a 'resident' of one state) is required under their 'Snowbird Law'. In this case, with a trailer purchased in NM and spending half of it's time in NM, I'm OK with wearing a NM tag.

I'd still welcome input from owners who purchased in NM and live in CO. PM me if you would rather not post on the forum.
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Old 12-12-2010, 01:46 PM   #10
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Quote:
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You can buy it without NM sales tax when you show the dealer your CO drivers license. When you register in CO, it's 2.9% sales tax.

Use CO roads, pay CO taxes!
I wouldn't go to the bank with that percentage. The sales tax on vehicles in Colorado is based on where you live. For instance if you live in an incorporated area in the front range, it can approach 10%.

I guess if you live in an unincorporated area and your county has no sales tax, then it may be 2.9%

Also I am pretty sure that if a Colorado resident gets pulled over while towing in Colorado with a New Mexico trailer plate, you will probably end up owing a bunch of money.

I used to work at a location where there are often out of state people transferring in. A few times a year, the State Patrol would hang out just outside the gate looking for people who had not changed their registration in a timely manner.

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Old 12-12-2010, 02:36 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JamuJoe View Post
........ under the New Mexico "Snowbird Law",.......

Which is? Are the new plates delivered by unicorn or yeti?
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Old 12-12-2010, 02:58 PM   #12
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I guess if you live in an unincorporated area and your county has no sales tax, then it may be 2.9%
Delta Co. has no use tax and so you would only pay 2.9% (didn't it go down to 2.85% or am I imagining that?) if you lived in an unincorporated part of the county. This encourages people to buy things outside the county and hurts local businesses. Use tax is sales tax paid by the purchaser, not the vendor, when you purchase something outside the county or municipality. On most things you can avoid it, but when you register a vehicle here, they get you.

When people live in multiple jurisdictions, or have a house in one and travel a lot, there is always opportunity to look for the cheapest tax and registration and an opportunity for others to question their character. People who fulltime can register in several states where there are organizations who help with that (for ex., Escapees). People who own houses may well get caught if only because their tow vehicle has one state's plate and their trailer, another. Insurance companies may question this arrangement—their rates are dependent on residence.

I sure didn't like paying the registration for our trailer—the first year was around $1,000 (goes down every year); state sales tax was 2.9% (or 2.85%) and thus a bigger chunk. However, since we bought it in the Denver area, we were subject to the RTD (Regional Transportation District) tax too because unlike other local sales taxes, the RTD tax applies even if you don't live in the District. That was something like .5 or 1%. But we live here and use the roads and other state services (though I never take an RTD bus), so it is part of being part of the community to us.

When we sell our house, we plan to move to NM, so then we will pay less. The roads in many places in NM are worse than Colorado. I will wait to the last moment to change plates, and not having a house right away may confuse things because we will have no physical address.

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Old 12-12-2010, 03:30 PM   #13
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In the Militery? Been in the Military..?

Fought these "residence" vs "domicile" forever.
I solved it by claiming immunity under provisions of the Soldiers and Sailors Civil Relief Act of 1949. Worked so far. Works also for personal property Taxes.
MOTOR VEHICLE EXCISE TAX

While this is for the State of Washington it applies to all.
I am not a Lawyer...and don't want to be.
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Old 12-12-2010, 06:41 PM   #14
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Thanks to all for the input. After further research, we've decided to bite the tax bullet and register the new AS here in CO. The NM arrangement is probably legal, as long as the AS were garaged there, but it just didn't feel clean enough to suit us.
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