Deciding whether to buy a new family car depends on a lot of factors. In general, when you are investing a large amount of capital, it’s important that you put your money into a solid piece of investment. In this case, you’ll want the car to retain its useful life and value for a long time. If you are unsure whether you should buy a new car for your family or if you’re better off leasing or renting a car every time you need one, there are a few questions that can guide you.
1. What Will My Family Need Five Years From Now?
Consider what your family needs right now, but also what your family will need in five years if not longer. In an ideal scenario, you should keep your car for as long as possible. However, a car that will continuously meet the needs of a growing family won’t come cheap. But overall, spending more on the right car now could help you save more money in the long run.
For instance, a Toyota Camry is a great family car for when it’s just you and your wife. It’ll also do if you have one or two kids. At the same time, it’s also far more affordable and very reliable. But, once you have kids, a more expensive crossover SUV like the Toyota Rav4 or the Nissan X-Trail is the better choice.
Generally, SUVs have more safety features. The Nissan X-trail, for example, has blind-spot warning and forward-collision warning with negligible body roll and high ground clearance. This makes SUVs safer to drive than Sedans because you have better visibility of the road ahead. Another added benefit of having an SUV for a family car is more legroom and space, which are great for a growing family.
Lastly, all-wheel drive is more common among SUVs than sedans. This is a great feature to have if you and your family frequently drive through severe weather conditions. It makes the SUV much safer and better equipped to handle slippery and uneven roads.
2. Can I Keep Up With Payments and Maintenance?
Even if you are a firm believer in the benefits of owning a vehicle, you’ll want to consider other factors as well. Will you be keeping the car for at least three years? Is the car enough for your family’s needs right now? What will your family’s needs be in five years? Are you financially capable of paying the down payment and keeping up with your monthly dues? Are you aware that owning a vehicle also includes paying insurance, as well as doing all the upkeep, maintenance, and repairs?
These are just some of the questions you need to answer before deciding if you are ready to buy your first family car. In comparison, when you rent a car, all you’ll ever have to ask yourself is what kind of car you’ll need and if you can afford it. So long as you do your due diligence and work with a trusted car rental company, you won’t be slapped with an unexpected fee or two.
3. Unforeseen Costs Of Vehicle Ownership
The cost of vehicle ownership extends beyond just paying for the automobile’s sticker price. Maintenance costs, repairs, insurance, title and registration fees, gas, and even parking, as well as the occasional violations, all add up to a hefty amount. Do also consider that we haven’t included accidental damages yet.
Keep in mind that these are all expenses that you’ll still have to pay for even if you don’t end up driving your car. In fact, not driving your car often for longer periods can cause even more damage. This can severely affect your financial flexibility, which is especially crucial for growing families who are just starting out.
The beauty of renting or leasing from companies like BbluxuryCarRental is that it lets you pay for using the car only when you need to use one. There are no overhead costs for you to worry about outside of the agreed car rental cost.
4. What Other Options Are Available?
If all you need is a vehicle to use, you actually have far more options than you’d think. For one, renting cars is more affordable these days. Moreover, the transportation paradigm is shifting rapidly. There is a growing number of consumers that prefer car-sharing and car-subscription services, among others.
Don’t ever think that the traditional sale and renting process are your only options. There are multiple innovative alternatives available on the market today that make both vehicle ownership and renting more accessible, as well as financially rewarding.
5. Does It Cost More Than 15% Of My Income?
The 36% rule is used by financial institutions to determine whether to extend credit to borrowers or not. According to this rule, a household’s total debt should not total more than 36% of its income. Otherwise, banks and other lenders will consider that particular household unfit to borrow.
With that said, many believe that the safe number for car payments is 15% of the total monthly income if not lower. Run the numbers to see if you can afford to buy that brand-new Mercedes. If it’s close to or over 15% of your monthly income, then don’t buy it.
Now that you’ve done your research, found out what you want and what you can afford, and have figured out all the possible options, you’re in a much better position to make a decision and negotiate. This lets you focus on finding the best deal possible for your first family car.
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