There’s no doubt that the family could use a second car. What remains to be decided is what type of vehicle would be best. Just as families are different, the transportation needs of one household are not the same as those of another household. Here are four of the more important factors you should consider before heading out to find the perfect second vehicle for your family.
New or Used?
There are pros and cons associated with purchasing new or used vehicles. On the one hand, there’s the thrill of owning a brand new vehicle and the fact that you are not inheriting the mechanical and other issues that prompted a previous owner to dispose of the car or truck. On the other hand, you can save quite a bit of money and the odds of getting a reliable mode of transportation are quite high.
Only you can decide if a used will serve the purpose or if you need to consider brand new vehicles. Take your time on this one since it will go a long way toward determining how much money you have to spend.
How Will the Family Use the Vehicle?
What needs will that second vehicle fulfill in the life of your family? Perhaps the plan is to have a car or truck that you can use for running errands, hauling things to and from the home, or just as a backup means of transportation when the primary vehicle is in the shop. When this is the case, you are likely to find that a late model or possibly a small truck will be a perfect fit.
Maybe the plan is to invest in a vehicle that will see use daily. For example, you need reliable transportation to get to and from work, but you would rather not put all those miles on the main family car. In this scenario, you just need something that is large enough for you and will make the daily trek without consuming a lot of fuel. A compact vehicle will work fine for that in most cases.
How Much Can You Afford?
When it comes to selecting a second vehicle, it pays to look closely at the household budget first. If you are still making payments on your primary vehicle, will the budget accommodate a second car payment? Even if your current car or truck is paid for, it still pays to look closely at the budget and decide how much of a payment you can support without creating financial difficulties.
If you have a significant amount of money set aside that you planned on using as a down payment on a new vehicle, would it be enough to purchase a suitable used one without having to finance anything? Along with not creating another debt to manage, you are likely to find the cost of auto insurance will be lower. That can only be good for your budget.
Use the answers to these and other basic questions and come up with a plan for purchasing a second vehicle. Once you have an idea of what sort of car or truck will do, it will be easier to focus your search and find vehicles that will provide all the benefits you want. Take your time, don’t go for the first likely choice you see, and always compare pros and cons. Doing so will result in purchasing a vehicle that provides plenty of years of reliable service.