How to Determine the Vehicle Tax in Spartanburg, SC

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Households in Spartanburg, SC, who are looking to purchase a new vehicle should be aware of all of the associated costs. Car taxes can be complicated to understand, and the phrase can actually refer to a number of taxes associated with the purchase of a new car. In fact, while South Carolina residents pay less in real estate taxes than most other states, they pay more in vehicle-related taxes when compared to other states, says the team at Greenville Online. It's important for Spartanburg residents to understand what costs will be associated with the purchase of a new car.


Sales Tax In Spartanburg, SC

The first vehicle-related tax customers will see is the sales tax charged on their vehicle. Sales tax is added at the time of purchase; for vehicles, the sales tax depends on the state and, sometimes, the city and county in which the car is purchased or where the resident lives. Sales tax in Spartanburg is 7 percent: 6 percent for South Carolina state sales taxes and 1 percent for local taxes. That being said, some states have different rules on sales tax for vehicle purchases.


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According to the Sales Tax Handbook, South Carolina collects 5 percent of the purchase price of all vehicles as state tax. This is based on the amount of the transaction being made for the new vehicle. For example, if you're buying a vehicle at $10,000, the entire amount will be taxed; in South Carolina, vehicles are taxed before incentives or rebates that the dealer might offer. However, if you're trading in a car worth $3,000, you'll only be taxed on the $7,000 remaining in the transaction.


Collection of Spartanburg Car Taxes

Sales tax is collected one time, at the time of purchase, and will be calculated and collected by the dealership. In addition, the owner will need to pay for the car's title, registration and a plate transfer fee if they are keeping their plate number.


This is about $40 on average in South Carolina. The dealership might charge an extra documentation fee to cover the costs of the contract and the filing of the sales taxes; this will vary from dealer to dealer.

Spartanburg, SC Property Tax

The next set of costs a vehicle owner will see in South Carolina is the portion of property taxes due according to the value of the vehicle. According to Carvana, the annual property taxes on vehicles vary from state to state, and can vary from city to city as well. In states like South Carolina where vehicle value is a part of property taxes, you'll receive a separate bill detailing how much you owe annually for your vehicle. These taxes usually go directly back into state transportation budgets to help maintain and improve roads.


South Carolina uses a manual created by the state department of revenue to determine a fair market price for your personal vehicle. Keep in mind that over time, the value of your vehicle decreases, so your taxes will also decrease over the years. Once a reasonable value for your vehicle has been obtained, that amount is then combined with what Spartanburg calls a mileage rate to determine the taxes owed. The mileage rate is an amount per $1,000 of vehicle value used to calculate the tax bill, and depends on the taxing district; the 2020 levy sheet can be found on the Spartanburg County website. These vehicle property taxes will be billed and must be paid before a vehicle's registration can be renewed.