1: Owning your own car will consume a large portion of your monthly budget. From loan repayments, car insurance, road tax and maintenance, even when cars aren’t broken, they cost you a lot of money. That’s before you even put fuel into them. All of these costs are in direct correlation to the car you choose. The more economical a car is to run, the more likely you are to have fun whilst driving it. This is because it gets you from A to B without being the reason you aren’t going to B.
2: Nobody else is driving their dream car either. We all want a supercar, scissor doors and exhausts that shoot flames, but typically these are toys for those who have the means and even if you could afford one, chances are, you still wouldn’t be driving it in normal circumstances. There’s a reason these cars are always photographed in the harbor or outside a swanky hotel.
3: Owning a car can make you a criminal. The obligations you have once a car is registered in your name mean you have to take the decision carefully. Nobody is going to have sympathy if you injure yourself or someone else whilst either uninsured or driving poorly. And in the worst cases, it can result in jail time.
4: There’s a difference between maintenance and fixing what’s broken. If you change your oil, look after your tyre pressure, and generally look after your car, getting it serviced when necessary, the chances of it leaving you stranded with a huge bill are significantly lower. These aren’t sexy bills to have on your bank statement but trying to replace a car after catastrophic failure is always going to be dearer. If you see a £10k car for £5k that only needs a couple of hundred pound spending on it, run away, anything too good to be true, usually is.
5: The more you learn about cars, the cheaper the ownership experience can become. Youtube is an excellent resource for repairs, as are amazon and ebay for parts. This might not be the difference between a Porsche and a Volkswagen today, but in years to come, you might feel confident enough in your own capabilities to reduce the running costs on a car that might otherwise be out of your budget. Being able to fix your own car is cool, being able to help someone else out who has broken down, elevates you to new best friend / potential spouse status much quicker.
6: Those miserable old people are not just fun sponges, they are speaking from experience. In 1992 it cost £3000 per year to insure a Golf Gti as an 18 year old in Liverpool. The average 18 year old lucky enough to have a job at that time was earning £5000. We all want cool cars, and when you can almost afford one, it’s easy to convince yourself that you should do it, however, the repayments result in owning a car in the future, but the insurance is just a payment to allow you to drive it now.
7: Your budget should be sensible. A car is your second biggest purchase and if you borrow to buy a car, lenders don’t want you spending more than a quarter of your income on the car itself. They know you have lots of other bills once you have a car and they want you to be able to cover them all. Make a fixed budget and don’t let anyone talk you into spending more, although it goes without saying, if you buy a car with a lower insurance, tax or fuel bill, then you can adjust your monthly payments accordingly. All of these should be included in your budget. There is a reason you can buy a 2004 4.4 V8 Range Rover for less than £5k, it’s going to cost you more in running costs that purchase costs every year. You’ll look fabulous being broke.
8: The car you drive doesn’t change who you are. Yes, a nice car is a status symbol, no it doesn’t make you a celebrity or a footballer. Most importantly a quick car won’t make you drive quickly any safer. Chill out, drive something that is well within your budget to allow you to enjoy things other than paying your bills. If you want a nice car in the future, make that your goal, but for now, enjoy your independence and don’t be a slave to your bills.
9: Your car is not going to remain immaculate; you can park as far away from the gym to count it as two workouts, but someone is still going to open their car door on yours. You are going to have to pay for someone else’s inconsiderate behavior. That said, it does not mean you should treat everyone else as bad and damage theirs without trying as hard as possible to avoid such instances.
10: Owning a car is a blessing in terms of independence, and it changes your entire way of life, you should make it as much fun as possible by only buying what you can afford and not worrying about what other people think. Remember, it’s the smile it puts on your face not everyone else’s that counts. We are here to help find a car for you at any budget and if you just want some friendly advice, pick up the phone and ask.