Buying an EV in Texas - Nuances in Texas | itschrishuerta (2023)

I took delivery of our family's first electric vehicle in November 2021; a 2022 Midnight Silver Tesla Model Y Long Range. It's a wonderful car to own but you'd be surprised at just how different it was to buy this car compared to my 2016 Toyota Camry.

In this post, I'll share the key differences and things to consider if you're thinking about buying a Tesla in Texas.

There are no Tesla dealerships 🚗

There are showrooms, service, and delivery centers, but all of the forms and paperwork you would typically do at a dealership are done completely online when buying a Tesla. If you planned on showing up at a Tesla showroom and buying a car off the lot (if there are any), you're more than likely going to sit at a computer with a Tesla sales rep and complete the process online.

Vehicle needs to be fully paid for (either financed or in cash before you take delivery) ✅

Texas has a rule that requires a vehicle to be paid in full before it can be delivered to the buyer. This differs from other states where you can inspect the vehicle before making the final payment. Tesla used to have a return policy where you could get a refund as long as you were within 7 days and the odometer was less than 1000 miles, but that seems to have disappeared.

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You are responsible for paying the sales tax on the vehicle separately 💸

Typically when you buy a vehicle at a dealership, you are either fortunate enough to pay everything in cash (goals) or you're going to finance the purchase, either at the dealership or through a third-party bank. Either way, the price you pay at the dealership includes the sales tax amount. Well, if you're buying a Tesla in Texas, Tesla legally isn't allowed to charge or collect sales tax. That means the amount you pay to Tesla, either in cash or through your bank, does not include sales tax.

The sales tax will be paid whenever you register the vehicle. Personally, I financed a portion of the vehicle amount through DCU and then set aside cash to pay the sales tax when I registered my Model Y. You might have the option with a third-party bank to include the sales tax amount in your loan and use it to pay separately, but I can't confirm since I did not do this myself. It's worth a shot if it's something you'd like to do.

Your vehicle needs to be insured for it to be released 👩🏽‍💼

Another item that's a little frustrating because it seems like you are already paying a ton of money for a product you don't quite have yet. Texas requires that your vehicle be insured before it is delivered. If you're buying a Tesla, that means you'll have to submit proof of insurance before you can schedule your delivery date.

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This process itself is straightforward. Once you receive a VIN from Tesla you should be able to get quotes from insurance providers and even get an insurance quote from Tesla themselves as they now provide car insurance in Texas. You'll get the option to upload your insurance card and it'll check off one of your pre-delivery tasks. For me, once I got my VIN I was in my vehicle 3 weeks later. Plenty of time to get insurance quotes.

Deliveries are pushed out - a lot 🗓

Tesla estimated delivery dates incorporate many factors, including vehicle configuration and delivery locations. When I placed my order in August 2021, my expected delivery date (EDD) was November 2021. I took delivery on November 27th, so it was pretty spot on but the EDD can fluctuate at any time.

If you were to order a Model Y today, the EDD is 6 months out into July 2022. That's not a problem if you're not in a rush, but if you need a car right now that might be an issue.

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There are no state rebates... for Teslas 😢

States like California offer incentives for residents to purchase electric vehicles. Based on my research, Texas offers a very limited $2,500 rebate, just not for people who buy Teslas. This might be because of Tesla's direct-to-consumer model. It's unfortunate because the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TDEQ) published a list of eligible vehicles and there's a lot of them. Tesla just wasn't any of them.

Supercharger network is available but not super convenient unless you're on a long trip ⚡️

One of the main reasons people buy a Tesla is the robust supercharging network. The thing is, in Texas, unless you're taking a long road trip, you might be going out of your way to use one.

Buying an EV in Texas - Nuances in Texas | itschrishuerta (1)

I'll admit, though, many superchargers are being added and are planned to be constructed closer to downtown. is an unofficial website that finds permit information to determine potential future superchargers. In Houston, there is one planned at an H-E-B in Montrose and users in the Tesla Motors Club forum have been posting construction updates.

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Buying an EV in Texas - Nuances in Texas | itschrishuerta (2)

If you are considering a Tesla and plan on using their superchargers, check out the Supercharger map to see which ones are near you. Also, you can use an app like A Better Route Planner (ABRP) to simulate what a trip would look like in a particular EV and get an idea of the charging stops.

Referral program for vehicles is no longer 💔

As of September 2021 Tesla no longer offers referral perks on vehicle referrals, which is a shame. When I ordered in August you and the person that referred you would get 1,000 free supercharger miles. It's still valid on Solar Roof purchases, though, so if you're also considering buying that, I'll leave my link here.

There are more hoops to jump through if you buy a Tesla in Texas, but as long as you're proactive and stay in constant communication with you're Tesla sales advisory, insurance company, and bank (if you're not financing through Tesla), you should be in good shape. While things like driving to the DMV on a Monday morning isn't the most riveting experience, chances are you'll still be in the honeymoon stage and looking for opportunities to drive your new car wherever you can.

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Disclaimer: I don't know that I needed this but better safe than sorry. This post is me sharing my experience and is not in any way legal or financial advice. I'm happy to share my experience but if you have any specific questions about the purchasing process or financing, it's best to reach out to Tesla and/or your financial institution directly.

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How does the EV tax credit work in Texas? ›

The State of Texas offers a $2,500 rebate for buying an electric car. Texas EV Rebate Program ; 2,000 applications accepted per year. The US Federal tax credit is up to $7,500 for an buying electric car. Electric vehicle drivers save $500-$1500 per year in refueling costs compared to gasoline.

Does Texas have an electric vehicle tax? ›

Hybrid and Electric Car Tax Rebate

Texas Electric Car Tax Credit: The State of Texas offers a $2,500 rebate for buying an electric car, and the Texas EV Rebate Program accepts 2,000 applications per year.

How do I get an EV rebate in Texas? ›

You may submit your application via email to or by mail to one of the addresses below on or before 5:00 p.m CT, January 7, 2023. For questions on obtaining the Notice of Rebates, determining the eligibility of a project, or completing and submitting an application, please contact us to discuss.

Does Texas have EV credits? ›

The Texas Emissions Reduction Program (TERP) offers a $2500 Rebate for the purchase or lease of an electric or plug-in hybrid vehicle. The vehicle must have been bought or leased on or after September 1, 2021. The rebate applies retroactively. The program lasts until January 7, 2023.

How do I claim my 7500 EV tax credit? ›

To claim the credit, taxpayers can file Form 8936 when they file their federal income taxes.

Does Tesla qualify for Texas EV rebate? ›

Tesla doesn't use franchised dealerships to sell its EVs, so they can't be legally sold in Texas, and they won't get a rebate.

Why is Texas electric bill so high? ›

“What we've run into over the last few years is the result of under investment in the infrastructure that supplies us electricity and natural gas,” Hirs told KWTX Monday. The rising cost of natural gas is another reason Texans will be paying higher energy bills this winter.

Does EV need inspection in Texas? ›

Electric vehicles in Texas are subject to pre-registration safety inspections.

How much is tax on a Tesla in Texas? ›

Rates. Sales: 6.25 percent of sales price, minus any trade-in allowance.

Are electric charging stations free? ›

There are several public charging points scattered throughout London that offer free or pay-per-use charging. EV charging times vary from 30 to 60 minutes or 8 to 10 hours, depending on the vehicle's model and battery.

Can I claim tax relief on an electric car? ›

Capital allowances on electric cars

Cars with CO2 emissions of less than 50g/km are also eligible for 100% first year capital allowances. This means with electric cars, you can deduct the full cost from your pre-tax profits.

Can I claim EV tax credit if I get a tax refund? ›

The tax credit is not refundable, which means you must have federal tax due to take advantage of it. If your tax due is less than the credit amount, you can only claim the credit up to the amount of your tax due. You cannot use excess amounts of the credit on future- or previous-year tax returns.

How much does it cost to charge an EV in Texas? ›

How much does it cost to charge an electric car?
Cost of Charging an Electric VehicleAssuming annual driving distance of 14,263 miles in a 2022 VW ID.4 Pro RWD
50 more rows
Sep 17, 2022

Do you still get a grant for buying an electric car? ›

In June 2022, it was removed for most private cars altogether. Grants for electric vans and motorbikes are still available, but these too have also significantly reduced over the years.

Does Texas offer a solar tax credit? ›

Texas doesn't have a statewide solar tax credit or rebate program, but a number of local governments and utility companies (large and small) offer incentives to homeowners going solar. Residents of the state capitol, Austin, are eligible for Austin Energy benefits.

Can I still get the EV tax credit in 2022? ›

The credit for qualified 2-wheeled plug-in electric vehicles expired in 2022. If you bought a 2-wheeled vehicle in 2021, but placed it in service during 2022, you may still be able to claim the credit for 2022.

How many times can you use EV tax credit? ›

The used EV credits are limited to individuals with an adjusted gross income of $75,000, a head of household income up to $112,500, or joint filers with adjusted gross incomes of up to $150,000. EV purchasers are eligible for the used credit once per three years.

How do you qualify for EV grant? ›

How do I get the electric car grant? If you've chosen an eligible vehicle, you do not need to do anything to get the grant. The car dealer that supplies the car will complete the necessary paperwork to apply for the payment on your behalf and you will get it in the form of an automatic discount off the price.

Is Tesla insurance expensive in Texas? ›

In our comparison of the largest insurers, Tesla Insurance offered the cheapest auto insurance rates to insure a Tesla in Texas, at an average rate of $2,030 per year for a new Tesla — 48% less than average.

Is it hard to buy a Tesla in Texas? ›

If you live in Texas, you can't directly purchase a Tesla in the state because Texas has a law that prohibits manufacturers from selling directly to consumers. You are, however, able to own and operate a Tesla in the state. Texas created the law to protect and encourage car dealerships.

How does the 7 500 tax credit work? ›

The legislation, called the Inflation Reduction Act, made the tax credit “nonrefundable.” That means consumers can only get the full financial benefit if they have a federal tax liability of at least $7,500. A nonrefundable credit offsets a consumer's federal tax bill but any leftover value is lost.

What is a normal electric bill in Texas? ›

Electric bills in Texas

In Texas, the average monthly electric bill for residential consumers is $160/month, which is calculated by multiplying the average monthly consumption by the average electric rate: 1,239 kWh * 13 ¢/kWh.

What is the average electric bill in Texas? ›

As of June 2022*, the average Texas home pays 13.30 cents per kilowatt-hour (kWh) for electricity, a price that's 12.6% below the U.S. average. For Texans, the average usage each month is 1,176 kWh, resulting in $156.41 for base electricity costs.

Will Texas electricity rates go down in 2023? ›

For 2023, EIA anticipates retail electricity prices will average $0.1532/kWh – ticking up from its $0.1524/kWh forecast a month ago. “Higher retail electricity prices largely reflect an increase in wholesale power prices, which are driven by higher natural gas prices,” the agency said.

Is Texas getting rid of vehicle inspections? ›

The Texas Senate on Thursday gave its blessing to a bill that would eliminate the state's vehicle safety inspection requirement for most vehicles.

How much is an oil change for a Tesla? ›

The average cost for Tesla S Oil Change is $135. Drop it off at our shop and pick it up a few hours later, or save time and have our Delivery mechanics come to you.

What counties in Texas do not require emissions testing? ›

You are exempt from the emission inspection if you live outside of the following counties: Brazoria, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, Montgomery, Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Johnson, Kaufman, Parker, Rockwall, Tarrant, Travis, Williamson, and El Paso.

Did Tesla get a tax break to move to Texas? ›

Tesla received state and local tax breaks, totaling roughly $64 million, to build Giga Texas. Supporters of the project claimed that the new factory, one of the country's largest, was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that would transform the region.

How do I avoid paying sales tax on a car in Texas? ›

A motor vehicle purchased in Texas for use exclusively outside Texas is exempt from motor vehicle sales tax. To claim the exemption, a purchaser must not use the motor vehicle in Texas, except for transportation directly out of state, and must not register the motor vehicle in Texas.

How much does it cost to fully charge a Tesla in Texas? ›

Cost of charging a Tesla Model 3

An 82 kWh battery is included in both the Long Range and Performance Model 3s. The Long Range model has a range of 353 miles, while the Performance variant has a range of 315 miles. To fully charge the battery in the 2021 Standard Range Model 3, you can anticipate paying around $7.65.

Is it cheaper to charge an electric car at home or at a charging station? ›

Charging an EV at home is usually the cheapest way to go, though you may incur some added costs to make the process more efficient. Depending on the type of public charging station you use, replenishing the battery on the road can either be free or surprisingly costly.

How much will electric car tax be? ›

The current levels, which are pegged at 2% for zero-emission cars until 2025, will rise by a maximum of 1% per year from 2025 to 2028.

Is it free to charge an electric car at a supermarket? ›

Is electric car charging free at supermarkets? Yes, it's free at some supermarkets. Supermarkets with free EV charging points include: Sainsbury's, Lidl and Aldi. Pod Point is the network provider and free charging is mostly on its fast 7/22kW chargers.

Is insurance cheaper on electric cars? ›

There are also plenty of reasons why EVs should eventually be cheaper to insure than petrol or diesel cars. For instance, electric cars are less likely to be stolen, and may be more likely to be recovered when they are, due to factors like limited range, time-consuming charging, and onboard tracking technology.

Can I claim for charging my electric car at home? ›

Yes, you can, but there are a few options to consider. Employers can use HMRC's Advisory Electricity Rate (AER), however, it sits at 8p per mile, which does not accurately reflect genuine charging costs, leaving drivers shortchanged.

What are the tax advantages of an electric car? ›

Summary of Electric Car Tax Benefits

The Chancellor also announced that rates would then be frozen for the following two financial years, 2023-2024 and 2024-2025. This means that a pure EV will have 0% BIK in 2020-2021, 1% BIK in 2021-2022, and 2% BIK in 2022-2023 – and in 2023-2024 and 2024-2025.

Is the 2023 EV tax credit refundable? ›

The credit is nonrefundable, so you can't get back more on the credit than you owe in taxes.

Why does Tesla not qualify for tax credit? ›

Eligibility for the rebate is based only the actually MSRP. As a result, most Tesla models, including the Model X SUV and Model S sedan and even the Model 3, as it's currently priced on Tesla's web site, still won't be eligible for tax credits.

How do I claim EV tax credits on my taxes? ›

To claim the credit, file Form 8936, Qualified Plug-in Electric Drive Motor Vehicle Credit (Including Qualified Two-Wheeled Plug-in Electric Vehicles) with your tax return.

How do I claim my EV tax credit? ›

Fill Out IRS Form 8936

IRS Form 8936 is specifically dedicated to claiming the tax credit for an electric vehicle. This form can be downloaded from the IRS website and filled out on a computer before printing.

How does the EV grant work? ›

How do I get the electric car grant? If you've chosen an eligible vehicle, you do not need to do anything to get the grant. The car dealer that supplies the car will complete the necessary paperwork to apply for the payment on your behalf and you will get it in the form of an automatic discount off the price.

How does the $7 500 tax credit work? ›

Tax credits provide a dollar-for-dollar reduction to your income tax bill. That means that a $7,500 tax credit would save you $7,500 in taxes. This could show up as part of your refund or as a reduction of the amount of taxes you would otherwise pay.

What states have an EV tax credit? ›

State and local EV tax credits
StateElectric Car Tax Credit Program
ArkansasNone available
CaliforniaPlug-In Hybrid and Zero Emission Light-Duty Vehicle Rebates
Alternative Fuel and Advanced Vehicle Rebate (San Joaquin Valley)
ColoradoPlug-In Electric Vehicle (PEV) Tax Credit
51 more rows
Nov 9, 2022

Is the EV tax credit still available? ›

Federal EV Tax Credit: How it Works

First, for EVs placed into service after December 31, 2022, the Inflation Reduction Act extended the up to $7,500 EV tax credit for 10 years—until December 2032.

Does Tesla qualify for tax credit 2023? ›

For the full list of the current requirements, review the IRS website. Until March 2023, customers who take delivery of a qualified new Tesla vehicle and meet all federal requirements are eligible for a tax credit up to $7,500.

Do you get a tax credit if you buy a used electric car? ›

More In Credits & Deductions

Beginning January 1, 2023, if you buy a qualified used electric vehicle (EV) or fuel cell vehicle (FCV) from a licensed dealer for $25,000 or less, you may be eligible for a used clean vehicle tax credit (also referred to as a previously owned clean vehicle credit).

Do you get money from the government for buying an electric car? ›

The grant is no longer available to most private buyers, but if you belong to a group of buyers that can still claim the grant, you won't need to do anything. The dealership will process it for you and you'll just pay the discounted price.

How to get an electric car charger at home? ›

To charge an electric car at home, you should have a home charging point installed where you park your electric car. You can use an EVSE supply cable for a 3 pin plug socket as an occasional back up. Drivers usually choose a dedicated home charging point because it's faster and has built-in safety features.


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