Car Sales Tax in West Virginia

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All car sales in West Virginia are subject to a state sales tax rate of 6%. Keep in mind that the total tax rate will depend on your county and local taxes, which can bring the total combined sales tax rate up to 7%. The average West Virginia car sales tax including state and county rates is 6.246%.
If you want to stay within budget when you buy a new car, you must pay attention to the additional costs that are often overlooked, such as sales tax. Sales tax can vary depending on where the car is purchased and can greatly affect your total cost.
The West Virginia car sales tax rate ranks quite high across the country and can fluctuate across the state. Figuring out the rate for your county is essential if you want to know how much your car will actually cost. The
car insurance
, curated a guide on car sales taxes in West Virginia and additional costs you will encounter to get you started on your calculations!
Before we wrap up, we'll even share how to save money on
West Virginia insurance costs
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How much is the car sales tax rate in West Virginia?

The statewide sales tax in West Virginia is 6%. This tax applies to any car purchase, whether it’s a new or used car. This is just the base tax and you may have to pay even more depending on your county or local sales tax.
Multiple counties, such as Berkeley County and Jackson County, collect an additional 1% of sales, making the highest combined sales tax 7%. The combined sales tax comes to an average of 6.246% across the 139 local tax jurisdictions across the state. 
Fortunately, multiple West Virginia counties do not collect additional sales tax, so the rate remains at 6% in those areas.

How are car trade-ins taxed in West Virginia? 

Many dealers will allow you to
trade in an old vehicle
and use the credit towards purchasing your new car. In West Virginia, the trade-in value of your car is not subject to taxes, meaning the sales tax will only be applied to your final ticket price. 
For example, you’re buying a
Tesla Model 3
worth $45,000 in
, and you’re trading in your old
Honda Accord Sport
for a $3,500 credit. You’ll only have to pay Kanawha County’s 7% combined state and local sales tax on $41,500 of the purchase. 
Unfortunately, dealer rebates and incentives are not exempt from sales tax. The sales tax will still be applied to the full price of the vehicle before dealer incentives.

How to calculate sales tax on a car in West Virginia

The total car sales tax in your area can be calculated using the
online tax calculator tool
provided by the Sales Tax Handbook. You can input your ZIP code to get an estimate of the sales tax rate that will apply to your car purchase. 
Key Takeaway Combining the 6% statewide sales tax with your local or county sales tax will give you the total car sales tax in your area. 

Exemptions from West Virginia car sales tax

Although most West Virginia car purchases are subject to sales tax, there are a few exemptions:
  • You are a tax-exempt organization
  • You are a new resident and the vehicle was purchased out of state before you became a resident of West Virginia
  • You are a senior citizen service organization exempt from income taxes
  • You are military personnel stationed outside of West Virginia
  • The vehicle is a Class-B truck over 50 thousand pounds gross weight
  • The vehicle is a Class-C truck over two thousand pounds gross weight
For more details on available sales tax exemptions, refer to the additional information on the
West Virginia Legislature website

How to estimate West Virginia tax, title, and registration fees

In addition to the sales tax, your total cost is affected by factors such as the title and registration fees, the cost to transfer your license plates, and the documentation fee charged by most dealerships. Some states even have supplemental fees for electric and hybrid cars. 
Here’s a breakdown of all the additional costs associated with car purchases in West Virginia:
Average cost
Sales tax
Registration fee
Title fee
Plate transfer
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How to find affordable car insurance in West Virginia

The final cost factor to account for is the
car insurance
for your new car! Although West Virginia has higher insurance rates,
can find you competitive prices for your area. 
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West Virginia has the same sales tax for used and new cars—it’s the statewide base sales tax rate of 6% plus your local or county tax rate.
By Tiffany Leung
Expert Insurance Writer
Reviewed by Jessica Barrett.
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