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There’s nothing like the look, feel, and smell of a new car. Driving in a new car is such an enjoyable experience. Or, maybe the old car finally quit, and the new car is a necessity. Either way, many people miscalculate the true costs of car ownership.
The cost of owning a car is never as simple as the price tag on the window. There are all sorts of other things that come along with car ownership. Sometimes, people forget to consider them when budgeting for a car. Whether one’s budget is modest or expansive, there are some important ways people can reduce their costs and enjoy their new car without blowing the budget.
Tips To Reduce The Cost Of Car Ownership
It can be tempting to purchase a big, beautiful truck or SUV, but sometimes that’s not the most economical choice. Car buyers looking to reduce their car ownership costs should not only look at the car’s sticker price but also its fuel efficiency. If a car only gets a few miles to the gallon, the trips to the gas station could end up impacting the wallet in a big way.
There are other things to consider when it comes to fuel efficiency. The more weight a car hauls around, the less fuel-efficient it is. Other things that have a direct impact are leaving a car rack on and often driving more than 50 miles per hour.
Drive With Care
Everyone likes to think they are a safe driver, but more than 6 million accidents happen nationwide every year. Drivers can take a moment to honestly reflect on their driving skills and look at areas of possible improvement and may end up saving a lot of money by avoiding an accident. In some areas, people can take a defensive driving course to help them learn techniques to avoid dangerous situations.
Another option designed to encourage good habits is a safe driving monitoring program. Many car insurance companies have this. A monitor installed in the car or a smartphone app monitors the driving behavior and average mileage.
Shop Around For Car Insurance
Many people don’t realize Florida is one of the most expensive states in the country for car insurance. That’s why it is critical to call several companies and compare quotes. Customers also need to know what kind of coverage works best for them. With such a large proportion of Floridians driving uninsured, drivers may want to get more than the bare minimum coverage.
People shopping for car insurance are often shocked to find out that USAA is one of the most economical choices. The one drawback is that USAA policies are only open to members of the military, veterans, and their families. But since there are several military bases, many Floridians can take advantage of USAA’s great rates and customer service.
Balanced Insurance Coverage
It’s important to shop around for quotes, but it’s also vital that drivers think about the amount of car insurance coverage that is right for them. Florida law only requires minimal coverage. Being a no-fault state, drivers in Florida should carry insurance to cover medical bills that may result from an accident.
Many things go into the calculations that insurance companies make when they determine a person’s quote. While going with a cheaper insurance company or a bare-bones policy might feel like saving money upfront, it could backfire down the road. If the company has poor customer service or won’t fulfill its obligations, drivers could go through unnecessary frustration or even litigation. Having minimal coverage is also dangerous. It could be the other driver’s fault, but without the right coverage, the car could end up a total loss with no compensation for the damage.
Keep Up With Maintenance
Car maintenance can be expensive, but waiting too long to fix a problem can create an even bigger one, upping the repair costs. Another hidden cost to car ownership comes with many luxury vehicles.
If something breaks on a luxury vehicle, the repairs can be much more expensive. Often, parts of luxury cars have to be special ordered and might not be available from a generic manufacturer. Also, specialty repair shops and dealerships are usually the only places that repair luxury vehicles properly.
One option to prevent a sudden, pricey repair is to purchase an extended car warranty. Just like with car insurance policies, it’s best to call around to get a quote and find out which one is best for the type of vehicle needing coverage.