If you’ve finally decided that public transport is more effort than its worth then it might be time to consider buying a car. It’s a major investment (arguably the largest one you’ll make behind your home), but it will unlock your life in a way you might never before have thought possible.
The freedom you’ll enjoy once you’re behind the wheel of your own car can be truly liberating, but depending on what kind of driver you are, there are different factors you might want to take into account.
Price – As a young driver, this might be the first car you’ve ever bought and whilst it might seem tempting to splash out on leasing a luxury motor for your inaugural road-worthy experience but you want to be able to walk before you start running. Stick to secondhand if possible and take your time doing lots of research and working out a budget. Be sensible and think with your head, not your heart.
Insurance – We won’t sugarcoat this – young, first-time drivers are much more likely to have an accident and, thusly, insurance costs are significantly higher. Before deciding on a car, research just how much it will cost you to insure. Stick to lower-powered cars, if possible, (no 2-litre engines if you can help it) to ensure a lower insurance cost. Smaller cars will also generally be cheaper to insure.
Automatic or Manual – If you have passed your test driving an automatic then you will be limited by the cars you can drive. That’s why it’s always recommended to learn to drive in a car with manual transmission. However, it’s also worth noting that, generally speaking, vehicles with an automatic transmission will use less fuel and is recommended in situations where you’ll be spending a lot of time stuck in traffic.
Space – Regardless of the current size of your family, a good family car needs to take into account where your family might be years down the road (pun very much intended). So, whilst the number of children (and pets) you currently have might initially define the car you’re in the market for, remember that this car could be in your family for a decade or more as long as you take care of it. So plan accordingly.
Safety – The safety of your family will always be of paramount concern and this is particularly true when you’re taking them on the road. For families, the safety and reliability of the vehicle will be perhaps the most important feature, so do your research and ask around before making your decision.
Warranty – Finally, don’t just accept the extended warranty offered by the dealership for the sake of convenience. Third-party warranty providers such as Warrantywise might be able to offer you a much more attractive (and reasonable) deal.
Image Credits: Steinar Engeland