Why We Became TEXANS and How We Did It
We are officially Texans! So why did we choose Texas over Florida and South Dakota? The first reason was the ease for us to fly to Texas. Between Southwest Rapid Rewards points and a voucher our flights were virtually free. We flew from Reno, NV to Houston, TX and then rented a car to drive the 1 1/2 hours to Livingston, TX. Another deciding factor for us was the fact that we only need to travel to Texas every 12 years to renew our licenses.
This is a brief overview of the steps that we took to become citizens of Texas. If you are looking to domicile in Texas we would recommend visiting the Texas Drivers License and the Texas DMV websites to get the most updated information and applications.
We started this process by becoming members of the Escapees RV Club. We also signed up for their mail forwarding service. They were very responsive. Within a day of them receiving our mail forwarding application we received an email with our new Texas mailing address.
Our first stop when we arrived in Livingston was to visit the Johnny Evett Insurance office. The staff was amazingly helpful and it was a true pleasure getting to know them. In no time at all we had proof of our Texas policy and were on our way to the next destination.
Note: To receive a Texas driver’s license you will need to provide two forms of documentation showing that you are a resident of Texas. Current vehicle registration is one and registering the Jeep was the easy part. Our second piece of documentation became a little more involved. The State of Nevada does not allow Nevada agents to insure a vehicle that is registered out of state. As a result, we had to transfer our policy to a Texas agent. Fortunately, our Nevada agent helped us find an agent located in Livingston. At one time, proof you had a mailing address from Escapees was accepted but no more. Escapees suggested the insurance documents and they worked fine.
Our next stop was to the Polk County Tax Office to register the Jeep. We had completed the applications (130-U Registration Application & VTR-270 Vin Certification, which is also how you self-certify the vehicle is out of state and not subject to a vehicle inspection) at home so this was super easy. We brought the title for the Jeep, proof of insurance and our Nevada registration. In less than ten minutes our Jeep was registered in Texas and we had the documentation we needed to prove our Texas residency.
Note: Proof of insurance: Insurance card and a copy of your policy as you will need to provide documentation that your insurance policy meets/or exceeds the requirements of the State of Texas.
Note: Since our motorhome is being built we asked for the registration packet. Once our coach is complete we will be able to register the motorhome via the mail. Our lender’s title department will also file the appropriate new vehicle documents with Texas as well.
Our final stop was to the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles to apply for our Texas drivers licenses and register to vote. Again, we completed the applications before arriving at the office. Here are the items we brought in addition to the applications (one application for each of us):
- Valid drivers licenses
- Social Security cards
- Proof of residency: Texas vehicle registration & insurance policy with our Texas address
- Valid passports
Note: Texas kept our Nevada drivers licenses. They did give us a temporary drivers license that included a picture but we were not sure if the TSA would accept them for our flight. Thankfully we had our passports to board the plane home.
We will need to have the Jeep and Motorhome inspected within three days of entering Texas. The Jeep title, and the motorhome’s too we presume, include a notation that it has not been inspected. Once we get an inspection, we can apply for a new title without that note. We assume the note is just to warn potential buyers that the vehicle hasn’t been inspected and may not pass. Not a concern on our 2014 Wrangler.
Becoming Texans was much easier than we were expecting. From start to finish it took us three hours which gave us the rest of our stay to explore Livingston and the surrounding areas.
We can now say that we are proud citizens of the great state of Texas.