When we reach the age of 17, we all dream of owning our own car. Not only does it give us a sense of freedom, it’s a bit like one more step towards becoming an adult. The fact is, this is one of the biggest expenses you’re going to undertake at this stage in your life, and whilst many of us have Mum and Dad behind us to help with paying for our first vehicle, it’s wise to consider what you’ll have to pay on your own.
This is where it all starts. Driving lessons are something you should think about using a professional for. There are a couple of reasons for this. One: You will have someone sat beside you who knows how to keep their cool, no matter what mistakes you make. Two: They’re properly trained to teach you how to handle a car so you’ll pass your test with flying colours.
You can try and save a bit of money by asking a friend or relative to teach you but, honestly, this will come with its stresses and it will probably take you a lot longer to learn (not to mention the bad habits you might pick-up on the way).
Buying a Car
Unless you’re really lucky and your parents are prepared to buy you a brand new car at their expense, thinking about the deposit you’ll have to pay is something-else to consider. Of course, many of us decide to go “second-hand” with our first car (I know I did). If you decide to do this, the chances are you’ll have to pay for it outright and there are pitfalls. Below are some tips that will help you avoid them.
- Make sure you take an older person with you when you go to view the car. Unfortunately, even though you think you’re an adult being in your late teens does still mean many people will think you’re a little “green” behind the ears.
- When you have decided on the car you would like, make sure it’s looked over by a professional mechanic. In fact, certain organizations that offer vehicle insurance will arrange for one of their people to do it for you.
- Don’t make a snap decision, and don’t be dazzled by all that fancy chrome and large exhaust pipes.
This is something that will dictate what type of car you have. Again, I’m afraid your age goes against you here. Many insurance companies see young people as a risk on the roads which pushes the premium up. Make sure you do some research and choose a car in an insurance bracket that you can afford.
This is possibly the biggest expense these days. We all know how much fuel costs at the pump so; you should try and make sure you know how much you’ll be using each week. Obviously, the more you “cruise” around, the more it will cost you in fuel.
Having a car is probably the first asset you will ever purchase as a teenager. If you follow some of the tips above, you won’t find your-self not being able to drive because you haven’t got the money!