10 Things to Consider When Buying Your Family Car
We get it. Buying a new car is a huge commitment
After your house, it could be the one of the most expensive commitments you will ever need to make in your life. Even if you’re planning on buying a second-hand vehicle there’s lots you should consider when choosing a car that is suited to the needs of you and your family.
- Budget for everything
It always pays to be sensible. So getting a detailed budget down will help you gain a realistic idea of your current vehicle’s value, if you currently own one. This will enable you to approximate how much you’re going to need for the purchase price.
Make sure to research the yearly cost of road taxes, and obtain a few insurance quotes. You should also read reviews for an idea on how economical your car could be. Add in your average distance travelled so you can calculate your possible fuel costs, as well as any servicing that will need to be scheduled.
Everything will considerably stack up so there’s no point saving up on a new vehicle if you are unable to afford it.
- Family Car – Diesel vs Petrol
Remember, everyone uses their cars for different purposes, so have a think on how your family is likely to use yours.
Is it going to mostly be driven at slower speeds during a school run? In that case you should probably stay away from cars powered by diesel, because they are unlikely to suit lower speeds or mileages over longer periods of time.
If that is your situation you’re best to look at purchasing either a petrol, hybrid or electric vehicle (if your budget allows.)
- Seating Options
The type of car you buy is defined by the amount of people in your family.
If you only have one child, things will be much simpler, but smaller cars aren’t a good fit as they do not have much space in the rear seats where you will need to mount a seat for your child. These cars have boots that are not usually big enough to accommodate buggies or prams. So it would be worth considering a family car with large boot space.
If you have at least three children, your vehicle options become somewhat limited. There are not many regular cars that can easily seat three children across the back seat safely, so you will need to research proper people carriers, such as seven seater vehicles or five seat cars that have wider rear chairs.
- Safety Safety Safety
Safety is important regardless of if you are purchasing your vehicle brand new or pre-owned.
If you’re looking at buying a brand new car, you should find out what safety equipment is a standard inclusion and then take a look into what optional extras were added. With optional extras, make sure you commit to something that would keep everyone safe. This could be a system to prevent collisions, or features that help protect anyone in the car if there is an accident.
- Your Finances
When you’re crunching the numbers, you should consider your family car finance.
Very few people save up for a large sum. Bank loans are still a popular option, but if you are buying your car brand new, a contract plan is gaining attention. This is a hire purchase in which you pay your initial deposit, followed by fixed monthly sums until it is all paid.
If that is the route you choose to go down, make sure you look into the values of resale to minimise any chance of coming towards your agreement’s end and with no means to afford another deposit.
- Have You Considered An Additional Car?
It can be easy to become caught up in finding a car which does everything in your family life.
Your solution might be to have an additional vehicle in your family, but for different It is vital to be vigilant when researching your new family car. purposes.
- The History of Your Vehicle
The condition and history of any vehicle you are looking at is just as important as the year of the model or the power output.
Remember to ask the seller for any receipts and a complete history of service, if they have one
- The Interior
One thing people will not usually consider when they are buying a brand new family car is if the interior is suitable.
Young kids can be messy, and may bring food or drink into the car. Therefore we’d advise to go for darker upholstery that is easier for you to clean.
- The Optional Extras
When you’re purchasing a pre-owned car, you only have a limited amount of extras that are just what was added to the car when it was first brought.
You should never stall buying a car because you want an optional feature that wasn’t included in the initial purchase, the only exception for this rule should be safety equipment.
If you buy a new car it means you have the ability to specify exactly what you would like it to have. This will mean you will need to wait longer for the delivery of your car, but it would make sense to invest in items you may need later on, including parking sensors and child seats specific to that model.
A family car that can tow should also be on your radar. A tow bar could, for example, carry family bikes on a secure rack. These roof rails will also be a handy addition for your family needs.
One last point – this time it is on visibility. The driver should have a comfortable, panoramic view, around their car, which extends to the windows, as well as the mirrors.
Good visibility is crucial. In a car you are thinking of buying, regardless of whether it is for parking or in your neighbourhood, you will need good visibility, particularly in areas with pedestrians around. You will also need to consider the view for your passengers as this impacts car sickness. We would recommend a light interior for visibility that features lots of glass.