THE time has come. They want their independence, their freedom and they no longer want to be a passenger in mum and dad’s taxi.
There comes a time when every teenager is keen to hit the open road with their very own set of wheels. It’s exciting and a huge milestone for everyone, however, it’s also incredibly expensive and daunting for parents.
You want them to be happy, but if you’re struggling to afford or finance a vehicle for them, then it’s going to be difficult to give them what they want. So, what’s the solution?
The last thing you want is more debt hanging over you, trying to make your money stretch even further than it already is – check out Creditfix.co.uk for the latest in debt advice and debt consolidation. Here we’ll look at buying your teen their very first car and the money advice that all parents should know.
Help separate the wants from the needs
Your teen might be thinking tinted windows, a head-turning paint job and parking assist. However, it’s important to help them see the difference between their wants and their needs.
They might want a vehicle with heated seats, but they need a vehicle with a high safety rating. They might want a car with a spoiler, but they need a car that is fuel efficient. The more they understand the difference between their wants and their needs, the more realistic the price range is likely to be.
Consider used over new
Perhaps the idea of a second hand car has got your teen picturing an old rust bucket with black smoke being choked out of the broken exhaust. It’s a classic image, but not one that is entirely correct.
Don’t let stereotypes or snobbery put your teen off the idea of a second hand car, many reputable dealers sell cars that are just a few years old, with plenty of modern features and high safety ratings.
Many of these vehicles have only had one owner and are available at considerably lower prices than their brand new counterparts.
Let them foot some of the bill
There are no rules that dictate you have to pay for the vehicle entirely. Perhaps your teen could put some of their own money towards their first car. Even if it’s just a modest amount. Giving them the responsibility of saving for their own car will help them understand their budget a little better.
And finally, research insurance options
Insurance is often financially crippling for teen drivers. Simply because they’re classed as high-risk and more likely to be involved in a crash, use their phone behind the wheel or be distracted.
When searching for the right car keep the engine, the type of vehicle and the number of miles your teen will be doing each year in mind. You could also look into having your teen placed on your own insurance policy to make the cost of driving financially viable for them.