So, you have decided to reward your graduate with a car (or help him/her purchase one, at least). That’s great! Adding a car to the family can make life easier for everyone — as long as it’s the right car.
Now, how do you figure out which car is the right car? Whether you are shopping for a new or used car, here are a few things we here at Soucy Insurance would like you to consider.
It is easy to find out which cars performed well in crash tests (and which did not). Visit these sites for current and past ratings, and other useful tools:
- The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has awarded Top Safety Picks since the 2006 model year.
- The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration site has ratings going back to 1990.
- The National Insurance Crime Bureau allows you to enter a car’s vehicle identification number (VIN) to find out if it’s been reported stolen or flagged as a salvaged vehicle.
Reliability and Usage
Sources such as Consumer Reports can give you a good idea of the experience other owners have had with the models you’re considering. Warranty coverage is included with new vehicles, of course, but also some used cars that have undergone a certification program. Depending on how your grad is going to use the car, you’ll want to look at mileage estimates and features such as all-wheel drive.
The Importance of an Inspection
Buying used? It is crucial that you get an inspection from a trusted repair shop. Retrieve as much history on the car as you can, from owner records to a report from Carfax or a similar service. And, if you feel the sellers are not being forthcoming, walk away. Do not let their problems become your problems.
Cost of Ownership
Certain cars cost more to repair and maintain than others, and insurance costs can vary widely as well. We would be happy to help you determine the impact different models can have on the price of coverage.
Remember, when you get further along in your search and have a few choices in mind, give Soucy Insurance a call at 762.2218 to find the best option for you.