For most people, having a car is a must. You could need it to work, take the kids to school and to run your other errands. But as you’ll know, having a car is expensive. Cars come with a big upfront cost, but there is also the cost of insurance, gas and maintenance to consider.
When you’re trying to budget, cutting your car costs can be one of the simplest ways to save money. Not only that, but cutting back on how much you use your car can also make a big difference to the environment.
Ready to start saving money on your motor expenses? Here are six ways to keep car costs down.
1. Get yourself a cheaper car
One of the first actions you can take to save on your car costs is to get a cheaper car. Selling your existing car could free up some money for you, but it can also mean that your car comes with lower running costs.
When you’re saving for a new car, think about the types of features you really need. A flashy car may look nice, but if it’s not a necessity, or in your budget, look for an alternative that will do what you need for a lower price. You can also look at buying a used car to help you make further savings.
If your family has more than one vehicle, perhaps you can see how you could downsize and start sharing vehicles to bring the cost down?
2. Actively reduce how much you drive it
Most people drive their cars more than they need to. Could you drive your car less? Even cutting how much you use your car by 25% can mean you spend 25% less on gas each month!
There are plenty of great alternatives to using your car every day. From carpooling with others to taking public transport – it all helps. You could also try more active forms or travel such as walking or cycling, as these will help you keep fit and healthy too.
3. Make sure you have the right insurance
Getting the right insurance is a must to help you deal with any accidents. While it might cost more to go for a more comprehensive premium, it can save you money should you be have an accident.
Car accidents can cost a lot of money between the price of repairs and potential medical expenses. If you experience an accident, you should engage experienced car accident attorneys who can help you get compensation for your damages if needed. It’s important that you drive as carefully as possible – any reckless driving on your part could mean your insurance goes up.
4. Get your car serviced regularly
A regular service will help keep your car in good shape. A service can identify minor problems before they become major ones, saving you money on repairs. It’s also a good idea to get to know your car and learn how to diagnose a problem. Instead of waiting to get your car seen to, take it to your mechanic and get it checked out.
5. Have some car savings put aside
Having some savings just for your car can be useful if you encounter a problem or your car needs repairs. It doesn’t have to be much, just enough to cover typical damages. There are a lot of easy ways you can save money that will help you put aside some rainy day car savings in no time.
6. Consider going electric
If you want to enjoy ongoing savings on your car costs, why not go electric? There are a lot of benefits that come with electric or hybrid vehicles, one of which being your savings on fuel costs. Electric vehicles are ideal if you don’t need to drive short distances, and they’re economical to charge at home.
The other benefit of having an electric vehicle is that it can reduce your carbon emissions, making them better value for the environment too.
Finding ways to save money on your car can be a great way of freeing up money in your budget. Even if you end up saving just $30 a month, that’s still over $300 saved by the end of the year. Every cent counts when you’re trying to save money! Try to set yourself a target to save each month, and you’ll soon see the difference a change to your habits can make.