Our cars give us so much freedom, but there’s no denying how expensive they are. For most of us, our cars are a big drain on our finances with a large part of our monthly budget going towards them. While the costs are unavoidable, there are definitely things you can do to help keep them down. Here are a few ideas.
Research Before You Buy
When you’re buying a car you have lots of boxes to tick. Chances are you want a car within a certain age range, a particular style, the right safety features and much more. But even if you find a car that checks every box, research before you buy. See if there are any issues with the model, what the average kind of repair prices are and if there are lots of similar complaints. Even if it doesn’t put you off enough to not buy the car, at least you’re aware of it and can plan for any likely repairs.
Shop Around for Insurance
It never makes sense to be loyal to an insurer. When your renewal documents come in the post, it can be easy to just accept what you’re given so you don’t need to mess around. But do this and you can lose out on potentially hundreds over the course of the year. Always check and see the best price you can get, sites like GoCompare make this so easy. At the very least you could ask your current insurer to match the price, they often will so they can keep you as a customer. Better money in your pocket than theirs, just for the sake of a quick search.
Be Wary of Emissions
Here in the UK, road tax is determined by how kind your car is to the environment. For this reason, electric cars are road tax free. It’s always worth checking the car you’re going to buy first to see how much this is. It can be a good few hundred pounds a year in some cases. It can actually make more sense to pay a little more on a car that gives off fewer emissions as it will save your wallet (and the environment) over the years that you have the vehicle.
Save on Fuel
Once you’ve bought your car, taxed it, insured it and everything else you still have the ongoing cost of fuel to deal with. And fuel doesn’t come cheap so this isn’t something to overlook. You can save on fuel by planning ahead, work out your journeys to avoid being stuck in traffic or taking lots of shorter journeys. Use a fuel prices app which will show you the cheapest places to buy too. You can even convert cars to run on LPG gas, it’s completely legal and can save you thousands over the course of your car’s life. LPG is less than half the price of diesel and petrol, so is a great choice especially if you do a lot of miles.