Ah, the family car, the vessel to many of your family’s summer travel adventures and road trips and place of some treasured moments. The road trips, the school pickups, and even the errand run – it needs to do it all with ease and flexibility. The average American keeps their car for 6.5 years, according to IHS Automotive. Families spend a lot of time looking for the perfect car to suit their family and their individual personality. As we all know, no family is the same and it follows that their car should be the perfect match for them. Yet with so many options available to consumers today, how can you choose the perfect car for you and your loved ones?
The Costs That Come With It
The costs of a new vehicle do not end with the purchase price. You need to maintain it. This means gas, service and maintenance and of course, insurance premiums. Before making a purchase, research different models and take into account fuel economy (miles per gallon), your budget allowance (can you buy outright or lease it?) and the accessibility to spare parts. British or overseas manufactured cars may incur additional costs during repairs since the spare parts may need to be shipped. The insurance agent will also consider this when deciding your premium and any discounts that could apply to your insurance. In addition to the size and performance of the engine, they will also consider your purchase price and the vehicle’s categorized insurance group. The higher its insurance group ranking, the higher your premium will be. Don’t just consider your insurance premium, however. Take into account the coverage you can expect to get – sometimes paying less isn’t always ideal. Balance your budget with the running costs of the vehicle, as the last thing you want is a vehicle that costs more than its benefits.
Your Family Dynamics
Do you have younger kids or an infant? That means you need something with enough space to comfortably fit a car seat and in later years, a booster seat. Think about your entire family and be sure it will suit the needs of everyone. If you have more than three kids then you are better off with a larger vehicle. Your children’s age groups will influence your choice as well. Younger kids need to be kept close by and easy to reach even when driving (in the times where you may need to help them). It will also dictate what kind of child-friendly features you look for in a car. Larger families may value storage space more while younger families should include Isofix points in their checklist.
Plans For Its Use – Now And In The Future
You should also consider the possible tasks your car will be used in. The school runs and soccer tryouts mean you will need something with decent space and of course, when kids are involved, a vehicle you can rely on to transport your family. Keep in mind your future plans as well. Since Americans do not change their cars that often (it is a sizeable purchase), plans such as the expansion of your family should be taken into account so that when that time comes, your car can fit perfectly into those plans. A less popular suggestion: think of the parking space at home. Do you have enough space for a minivan or SUV? Many of us have driveways and multiple cars. If it does not fit onto your property, you may find you need to pay for street parking. This will also vary according to your car model.
Buying a new family car is more than simply choosing just any vehicle you have your eye on. It’s about choosing the right one – the car that will fit perfectly into your life and your family. By following these tips you can be sure to be well on your way to achieving this.