young man with new car

First Wheels for Your Child: Buy a Car Before They Go Off to College

When your child is in college, there are several things you can give them to make their life easier. One of the more effective gifts is a simple car. Buying one for them can give a lot of options when it comes to transportation and more. For example, with a car, they’ll find it easier to get a part-time job. But when you are thinking of buying them a car, there are a few things you need to consider.

The Price

One of the first things you have to ask yourself is how much the car will cost. While you might be buying this as a gift, that’s no reason to go overboard. It would be a good idea to find an inexpensive car. Several affordable vehicles can easily meet your description. A brand-new car is a nice idea though it may be better to buy a used one. The advantage of a new car is that you don’t have to worry about any past issues.

If there are limits on your budget, then you might have to settle for a used car. They usually have good prices, and they are perfect for college students. Check out used car dealers for a good bargain. You might have to ensure that the car has been properly inspected and is in great condition before you buy it though.

The Maintenance

The next thing you have to think about is how a college student will keep it in good shape. If your child is renting an apartment, then there might be some parking space nearby. There might even be a dormitory parking space if they live in a dorm. The problem is that it will likely be hard to squeeze in a large car. Many people suggest getting a mini since it occupies less space than a larger car.

Smaller cars also tend to consume less fuel. Your college student likely has a tight budget. You do not want them to spend more than they need to on keeping their car running. That’s the problem with buying a used car. It might have more problems that need fixing than a newer model. But a well-maintained car can usually last a long time as long as you tell your child to be careful about it.

The Performance

black car

The car itself needs to be good for driving. Look at where your college student usually drives. If the roads are paved and there are no potential hazards, then any car should be fine. But if they have to drive through rough conditions, then you need to buy a car that can handle it. For example, if the college is in a flood-prone area, then you’ll want something that will ensure that they won’t be stuck even when there’s a flood.

You might also want to have your child test drive the car before you purchase it. While you may be footing the bill, they are the ones driving the car. They will want to like the car they are driving. Have them test several models out and see which ones they like. It will narrow down which car to pick.

The Future

Before you pull the trigger on buying the car, you should also think about the car’s future. Do you think they will keep it after college? Do you need to buy insurance for additional protection? Think about their plans. If they plan to join the Peace Corp or continue studies abroad, then you might not want to spend a lot of money on the car. Instead of fully buying it, you might want to lease the car instead of buying it.

Other things to think about are insurance and ownership. Since you bought the car, a lot of the initial paperwork is in your name. You might want to transfer ownership. This can cover your insurance, too, so be careful about the paperwork.

The Delivery

After the purchase, you have to decide how and when to give the car to them. If their college is out of state, then you might want to hire car movers to deliver the car to them. It is much better than driving it off to their college or waiting for them to come home and pick up the car. Professional car movers will ensure the car is in good condition when it arrives.

No college student is going to refuse a car from their parents. But that can mean that they’ll accept what you give them. To ensure that they are getting the best possible choice, you should be more careful about your selection. With the right car, your loved one will be sure to get more out of their college education.

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