Image Credit: Kaboompics
Owning a car is a brilliant way to achieve independence. You don’t have to wait for buses or trains any more, or figure out which taxi company is cheapest or most reliable. You can just hop into your new vehicle and get to wherever you want to go.
However, there are a few costs that you should bear in mind before you sign on the dotted line. These costs might not have occurred to you, and may never even come up but forewarned is forearmed, so here’s what you should know.
The Cost of an Accident
When you own a car, the likelihood is that you will have the odd bump and scrape in your time as a driver. Usually, these bumps are just superficial and no-one will be hurt in which case a sink plunger is a handy trick for getting bumps out! But cars are dangerous and more serious accidents can – and do – happen.
Should the worst happen and you are injured, you should get your medical bills paid after a car accident with a lawyer on hand to help you. Many insurance companies are slow or reticent to pay up after an accident so having an attorney to help you while you are at your most vulnerable is a wise choice.
The Fluctuating Cost of Fuel
When you first work out whether you can afford your own car, you would be wise to take into account the cost of fuel. However, as fuel fluctuates so often, try to give yourself a lot of leeway when working out how much you will need to spend. Fuel prices can be affected by all kinds of things so it is worth watching out for price hikes.
If gas is going to be a prohibitive cost, it might be worth looking into other car types such as hybrids and electric cars. These vehicles might cost a bit more upfront, but the fuel is more likely to be set at a stable rate. The point is, that once you have bought the car, you will still have costs to consider.
The Cost of Repair Work
Cars are getting more and more complex as technology develops and increasingly, having a quick look under the hood yourself isn’t an option as all the mechanics are quite literally locked away. This means that, though your car has better power, more features and is generally of a higher quality, you will need to spend more on getting repairs and check-ups.
Getting a reliable mechanic should definitely be high up on your list of priorities before you buy but you should also do some research online to see what people tend to budget for repairs on your car type. Have a look through your insurance documents as well to see whether some repairs are covered. If you are buying new, make sure that you get a warranty and remember to use it!
For most people, the joy of owning a car is well worth having this unexpected costs but, if you can, try to save a small amount every month to create an emergency fund of sorts, just in case.