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Used Cars, Rego, Insurance - please dumb it down for me!


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I've searched the internet & forums but can't seem to pinpoint the information I'm looking for. I've also had a look on the SA site for information, & perhaps I'm being a little blonde, but wondered if someone could simplify the whole buying a used car & the costs that come with it for me!


So...we walk into a used car centre, not letting on that we've literally just landed (!) & buy a car......smallish engine, nothing fancy, just something to get us on the road & from A-B to start with. We pay the man, who won't include any rego etc in the price!


So....what comes next?


We have 14 days to register it as ours from what I can gather? What are the costs involved in this?


Is it at this point we can get the rego? Which again, from what I can gather is similar to the car tax in the UK? I realise there are different costs depending on engine size, etc, but are there brackets to fall into. In the UK they have the A-G grouping depending on the CO emissions.


The rego includes third party insurance, which I understand is for injury & no vehicle insurance. Again, anyway to know how much this would roughly cost? If we take out fully comp insurance (which we likely would be doing for our own piece of mind) is this reduced at all?


& stamp duty? Is this a % of the car value?


& finally - we would be hoping to buy a car ASAP after we arrived, but we'd still be in short term accommodation. Can we give this address, & then change it at a later date once we've got a long term rental?


Thank you so much :confused:

Amy x

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Guest PaulandVicky

Buy car: normally has a bit of rego on it (I would encourage those to put it on) then drive away same day and little less hassle than not having.

price of rego: depends what the car is worth. Pay 3 monthly.

address: use your temporary one that's fine, make sure you have a letter sent to the address so you use this as address evidence as they will ask for it.

fully comp: you can get additional insurance. It's wise. SA drivers have a bad reputation. The pommie drivers are not so bad... Ha ha. Bring evidence of your no claims from uk. They accepted mine. Not that costly for insurance really.

** there is no MOT in SA so be mindful what you are buying. Ensure it's all tickety-boo before buying as you will regret. Make sure you come with money for a car, they are expensive for what you can buy in the uk and little less choice.

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Thank you both for your replies.


I also came across this after I'd posted (typically!) It's ACT - are they different all over Aus, or does this give me a rough guide (not after specifics, just a rough est. for budgeting)




Tom's a mechanic by trade, so he'll be giving everything a thorough checking over before we buy anything.


I've read a lot that everybody haggles, so we must get working on our haggling skills!!

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Guest pizzicarella

​Ok, here is a "how to buy a car in South Australia guide" :P. Or, you could check out this website which has all the links: http://www.sa.gov.au/subject/Transport,+travel+and+motoring/Motoring/Buying+and+selling+a+vehicle/Buying+a+vehicle


1. Find a car you want, either through a dealer or privately. (Most are advertised on http://www.carsguide.com.au)

2. Contact the owner/dealer.

3. Arrange to view the car, and take for a test drive. Make sure you take your license - dealers will photocopy your license before letting you go for a test drive.

4. Make an offer on the car - haggle (especially with dealers).

5. At this point the process differs a bit between dealers and private sales:

Private Sales: Arrange to have the registration changed over into your name. Make payment to the owner - obtain a receipt, or a written agreement that states that the car is now in your possession as you have given payment (or it's being processed by the bank) or something along those lines. If the car has any registration left, this means applying to change the registration details to have your name and address - within 14 days of making purchase. If there is no registration left on the car, you need to apply for registration and take in the form to service sa, and pay... you then get a certificate and can drive it.

Used Car Dealers: Same as private sales, but: additional contracts and actual proof of transfer of ownership beyond just changing the registration to your name.

5a. Stamp duty is paid at the time of registration of the car, or at the time of transfer of registration. You can work out the stamp duty here (http://www.revenuesa.sa.gov.au/stamps/SDcalcs/noncomvehiclecalc.html)

Paying the registration will also pay the compulsory insurance.

6. Drive your car home.

7. In the event that there was rego left, and it has been changed to your name- shortly before it expires you will be sent a letter saying to renew the registration. You can do this online (http://www.sa.gov.au/subject/Transport%2C+travel+and+motoring/EzyReg)




I am going to pretend that I want to buy this (http://www.carsguide.com.au/cars-for-sale/D_1701502/used-2009-KIA-RIO-LX-JB-Manual-Unleaded-Hatchback-in-SA---York-Peninsula.html) Kia Rio - it was the first car listed that is: less than 10 years old, less than 100k km, under $7500, and in South Australia.... so basically, a 'typical' car. You can work out the registration+administration+compulsory insurance here: https://www.ecom.transport.sa.gov.au/et/egrf_vehicle_details.do


For this car, I pay the 7500 to the dealer. When I register the car in my name, I will have to pay 240 in stamp duty and $220 for three months registration or $727 for twelve months registration. So, for that 2009 Kia Rio, the total cost I would be paying is at a minimum $7960.


Additionally, as a personal preference I would take out insurance beyond third party insurance, as this only covers the PERSON. I would definitely take out third party property insurance which covers their car as well.... that way if you are in an accident with a ferrari you won't be personally liable to cover the repair costs!


Comprehensive insurance will cover the third party person, property and YOU as well! There are varying degrees... you can choose only to be covered for theft and fire, or be covered for absolutely everything. Choosing this sort of insurance really depends on the car you are driving as it wouldn't be worth it for an old lemon.


For additional insurance the premiums depend on your age and your no-claims period - I personally pay quite a lot for car insurance, as I don't yet have a full license, and I am also under 25. But for somebody over 25 with a full license with an average car it is normally between $400-$1000.


Again, using that Kia Rio as an example - If I wanted to insure that with AAMI for two people born in 1980, who have had no incidents, it would cost $ 605.00 per year. That figure can be lower or higher by going to different insurers, or having a higher excess.


I think that's it...

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