Having a family can change your lifestyle in many ways, including the kind of vehicle you will be using. Luckily, families nowadays have many options when it comes to buying a suitable family car compared to the past. Here are a few tips you can use when finding the best car for your family.
Prioritize the Car’s User
Before you head to the dealership and get that vehicle, factor in the family members driving and riding the new vehicle. Will your spouse or teenage children use the car as well? In addition, will the children riding in the car require extra room? Check if it has all the amenities you need, like cup holders in the back seats or storage pockets for books and toys. These are basic designs for the car that you will come to realize will be important later.
According to a U.S. Interior Quality and Satisfaction Study done by JD Power and Associates in 2011, about two-thirds of customer complaints about a car’s interior are about design issues instead of actual defects. Meaning, if you get a car and realize that your kids do not have a place they can keep books and toys, you’ll be frustrated because your car will be messy all the time. To avoid this, talk to the salespersons about your family needs for assistance in finding something ideal.
If you are a small family of around five people or less, a vehicle like a passenger sedan or a station wagon will comfortably accommodate everyone. For bigger families of more than five people, a minivan and a Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) are appropriate, as they have a large seating capacity. Whether it be kids or adults using the car, consider carrying the whole family to the dealership. You can then test drive to see if each family member fits comfortably in the vehicle. If you have small kids that will be using car seats, you can also carry the car seat with you and check if it will comfortably fit in the back.
A big car may be great for transportation and storage, but does it meet the necessary safety standards? When you get on the road, you are exposed to the risk of getting into an accident. Some of these accidents turn out to be fatal, especially when involved with bigger vehicles like trucks. In the U.S. alone, there are about 3.5 million truck drivers, and most likely, every time you leave home, you will drive by a few of them. You want to keep your family safe, so ask the dealership you’re interested in for a vehicle with enhanced safety features.
When buying a vehicle, consider fuel efficiency, especially if it is the primary household vehicle. Picture a scenario where you have three kids, and you are probably dropping them off at two different schools, go to the gym, go to work, run errands for the house, and go out on the weekend. This means your car will be very busy. If you choose a vehicle that consumes a lot of fuel, you will feel that cost eventually denting your wallet. Therefore, find a vehicle with excellent fuel efficiency.
Cost is also another factor to consider when getting a vehicle. If you are paying for the car in installments, look for a car dealership that’ll reward your excellent credit score. According to the Wall Street Journal, after checking out the creditworthiness of a billed customer, the factor advances most of the invoice amount, usually 70% to 90%. This is beneficial to your finances.
Before buying a car for the family, always research the model you are interested in. It will make your car shopping experience easier. You can also talk to friends that have gone through a similar experience for advice.