Eventually the time will come when your child wants to drive, or even get his or her own car. Most parents are never quite ready to handle this situation, but as a parent, you’ll need to prepare. Getting a car for teenagers should never be taken lightly. You need to consider several factors before making major decisions. These tips can help to open your eyes about buying a car for a teen.
Maturity and Responsibility
Getting a vehicle for your son or daughter is a big event, which can affect everyone in the family. For instance, once you give your child the keys to a car, they will more than likely be driving their little sister or brothers back and forth to band or football practice. Therefore, you need to think long and hard as to whether your youngster is mature and responsible enough to drive.
You might think about whether they listen and follow directions. Do they understand the importance of safety and how dangerous a car can be? Thinking about these types of things should help to give you a clear picture of whether your child is ready and responsible enough for their own care.
Do They Need or Want a Car?
Often, parents assume their child will want to have their own car and drive as soon as they come of age. However, some kids just are not ready for the financial responsibility and don’t want to drive or have their own car until they reach 18.
The next question you need to consider is whether they really need their own car. Many families get along just fine by letting their kids borrow the car once or twice a week for special occasions. The kids are happy they get to use the family car, and mom and dad save a lot of money by not purchasing a vehicle in addition to buying insurance.
Then there is also the situation when your teen and family members could benefit from having their own car. Getting your kid a car may be the solution for transporting them back and forth to a job and providing rides for other siblings.
Selecting a Car
If purchasing a car is in the plans, you’ll need to decide on the most reliable, safest and economic car you can get. Generally, your options include buying a new car, buying a used car or giving your teenager the old family car.
According to CAR-Research XRM, a provider of reputable CRM software, new cars have more safety features, fuel efficiency and higher price tags. Used cars cost less than new, but they may need repairs and might not be as fuel-efficient. You already know the mechanics of the old family car and it’s probably already paid for.
Whatever your decision, avoid buying sports cars, SUVs or vans. These have higher accident rates for teens. Look for a sound mid-sized sedan with safety features.
Insuring a teenager is going to be another expense that you’ll have to work out. However, you can save on insurance in some situations. Insuring vehicles that cost less to repair and those that include safety features usually carry lower premiums.
If your child keeps grades up, they may qualify for good student discounts. Completing a driver education course also reduces costs. Lastly, some insurance companies reduce rates when the child is a little older, like 17 years or older.
You can help to ensure the safety of your teen while driving by establishing rules. Limit the hours for night driving, which is when most teen accidents occur. Prohibit the use of cell phones while driving, which are too much of a distraction.
Limit how many other teen passengers are allowed in the car. Typically, crash rates increase when there are other youngsters in the car.
Whether you’re buying a vehicle as a graduation present or the time is right for your teen to have a car, make it a good and safe learning experience.