If buying a new family car is on your to-do list at the moment, you’ve might have a fairly decent idea which car you’d like. Or you might have absolutely no idea. It’s no mean feat finding a car which fits everyone in comfortably, plus all the kids’ sports gear and prams, plus the family dog, AND works well and efficiently to boot. It’s a tall order, but good family cars do exist. Here are a few things you will want to consider before you commit.
Do your research
Ask your friends, check Which Best Buys, but most of all, just spend some time reading up on the various options. As with any big purchases, you’re going to want to know everything there is to know about your car before you throw your hard earned money at them. Don’t allow yourself to feel rushed into it; you don’t want to regret your choice six months down the line.
Understand car safety features
It’s an unfortunate truth that accidents do happen, and it’s important that whoever is in the car at the time is protected as much as possible. When you’ve chosen a new vehicle, ask yourself: is my family going to be safe in this car? A good family car manufacturer will advertise its safety features as a priority. Look out for multiple airbags, ABS braking, and electronic stability control.
Go inside your budget
Understanding your budget and what you can stretch to financially is critical when buying a family car. Spend some time doing the maths and working out what you can afford, including your fuel bill each month. If you’re planning on buying a car on finance, you will need to prove you can keep up the repayments. A free credit report check will show you what the dealership will see when they run your credit check and can give you peace of mind.
Spend some time in and around the car before you buy it, and make sure you anticipate it will be big enough for your needs. Can you fit everything in you need for a family day trip? If you have a pram, then bring it with you to try to stow it in the boot, and make sure you bring the dimensions of any dog crate or the like that you will need to install. Similarly, don’t go too big. If you don’t need a seven seater, don’t get one just for the convenience of extra space, you’ll find they cost more, and they’re not quite as easy to manoeuvre.
When you’ve got your heart set, ask the dealership about going for a test drive. Make sure any named drivers get to experience the feel of the car from behind the wheel. It’s important you all enjoy driving the car and find it comfortable. Get a feel for the car from all of the seats, especially the third row, if you’re going for a car that big. Make sure the back of the car doesn’t get too hot or claustrophobic so that your children will be comfortable.
Most of all, make sure it’s a car that you enjoy driving and won’t cost you an arm and a leg.