Running a household is no walk in the park. You have to think about a multitude of expenses ranging from your everyday food to your monthly mortgage. So although the prospect of owning a new car may seem like a solution to your family’s commute woes, think again.
When you check out sites like toyotacostofownership.com or even review sites for various vehicles, you will notice that there is more to owning a car than just paying for it up front or paying off your car loan. You have to consider all of these other costs as well, before buying a new vehicle, so that you can decide if it is really going to fit into your budget or not.
One thing to consider is that the tires are going to wear out. Tires typically cost around $100 each, though it really depends what type of vehicle you own. For a small coupe, you could find deals for $60 a tire, while finding them for $100 each would be a deal for a truck. Either way, to make your vehicle safe to drive, especially in the rain or in the winter, you need to replace your tires every five years or so. It is also a good idea to buy a full-size spare so that you have it on hand in case you get a flat.
Another thing to think about is just the cost of standard maintenance. You need to do things like replacing the washer fluid, adding more coolant and changing the oil. These things do not cost much, but they have to be done a few times a year so that the car does not break down. You also may need to have the tires rotated or aligned, helping them to wear evenly while you drive.
You should also take into account where you plan to park your car. Do you have a garage or are you simply going to park it along the sidewalk? If your car is just parked out on the street, it is subject to all sorts of danger. Kids can hit your windshield with a football, or it could be easy prey for thieves.
Owning a car is pretty much just like getting a new pet or giving birth to a new baby. It becomes part of your family, and starts to eat up a portion of your time when it comes to care and maintenance. Before you head out and get a car, think it over. Make sure you still have enough left for other expenses, and that the entire family lends a hand in the car’s upkeep. Then, the benefits will outweigh the costs.