The Hidden Costs of Owning a Car

Cars are ideal for getting around and giving you greater freedom to travel at will. However, they do come with a few hidden costs that you should consider. Even if you are optimistic, you need to plan for the future and consider all the financial implications before you choose which vehicle to buy.

Fuel

You have probably already thought of fuel, but you may not be aware of the price fluctuations that affect the amount you pay for fuel over the year and across the country. For example, in the summer months, many gas stations use summer blend gas which is more expensive but contributes less to smog. This is popular in states like California where there are more problems with air quality in the summer heat.

Fuel prices also fluctuate depending on other factors such as the weather, your location and the price of crude oil. All of these factors may mean that gas is cheaper one month and then rocketing in price the next. It doesn’t mean that you can’t afford a car, just that you should think carefully about when and where to refuel and how much fuel you intend to use.

Insurance

All drivers must have vehicle insurance but what many new drivers don’t realise is how expensive that can be. The cost of your driving insurance comes down to a range of factors including – but not limited to – your credit rating, your driving history, how far you usually drive, your car and even more personal details like your age, gender and marital status.

While there are lots of these factors that you simply can’t change, it is worth looking into ways to make your car insurance cheaper to see if there is anything you can do. You should also make sure to shop around for the best deal, rather than settling for the first number you hear.

Though you might be tempted to skip out on car insurance, it is a legal requirement and if you are in an accident, you will almost certainly need this insurance to cover the financial implications. In the event of an accident, you may also wish to contact an auto accident lawyer to represent you and assist with your claim.

Repair

We like to think of cars as the most reliable form of transport, but they do need some repairs from time to time. This means that you need to make sure that you have enough in the bank to cover the basic needs of your vehicle or have to take it off the road while you save up.

The most expensive cars are, unsurprisingly, the most expensive cars to fix. Over ten years, a BMW costs around $17,800 to fix in contrast to a Toyota which costs around $5,500. This is a pretty enormous difference that comes down to the cost of the parts and fit-out. The amount that you are prepared to pay over the years should influence your decision about which car you want to buy now.

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