Upgrading your car can be a stressful time, especially if you need to take into accounts factors that you’ve never had to consider before, such as a new family. Searching for the right car can be difficult, especially if you don’t really know where to start or what exactly it is you are looking for, do you choose petrol or diesel? SUV or 4X4? These are all the questions you need to think about. Don’t worry though, were here to help. We’ve presented the extensive guide you need to consider before you make the purchase!
Petrol Or Diesel?
Way back when, anyone that wanted to save money on their fuel expenses would choose a diesel car. They often did far better miles to the gallon than their petrol counterparts and diesel was often also cheaper. Whilst diesels are still good on fuel, their petrol counterparts now offer very similar miles to the gallon, so this is no longer a deciding factor in terms of MPG. However, the distance you cover in your new car will be. If you are only using the car to ferry the kids down the road to a playgroup or to school and nothing more, a petrol car will be far more practical than a diesel. Diesel cars don’t perform well over short distances and not running them far enough and long enough can ruin the engine. So, before you settle on what type of fuel you want, make sure your miles match the need of the engine.
Does It Have 5 Doors?
When your family starts growing, so does the number of doors that your car will need. Unfortunately, it is time to say goodbye to the sleek 2 door coupe and upgrade it to a 5-door vehicle. 5 door vehicles are imperative if you have a young family, not only for the obvious safety reasons, but there is no way you can get a baby seat in a 2-door coupe.
Is It A Good Height?
You may think that in terms of characteristics, height should come somewhere towards the bottom of the list, but really, it needs to sit right at the top and for good reason. We may not like to admit it, but we are old and we need to look after our backs. The last thing we want to be doing is lifting a baby seat in and out of a low car and having to twist. Not only can this cause you injury, it can also be difficult to get to your kids in an emergency, so make height a top priority.
Does It Have A Good Safety Rating?
Safety ratings for cars are more transparent than they have ever been, so capitalize on this information. Instead of searching for cars based on their features, search for them based on their safety rating. It is far easier to work through a list of safe cars and see if they have the features you want, rather than working through a list of cars that have the features you want but not the safety rating. Chances are, this car will become your go to car, so you want to make sure that everyone is safe when they are in it.
I have kicked myself for buying cars and never checking this, make sure you have as many cup holders as you can handle. In the front, the back and the sides, you can never have too many. Your new family car will be the family taxi from here on out, so you want to make sure that when one of you is taking a break in the back from a long drive, you can store your coffee somewhere. Expect to be changing seats with kids that want a different view all the time, so you will need to make sure that you can access a drink without the driver having to pass it back to you, or even worse, you having to pass it back to the driver!
Understand Your Budget
Not everyone can afford a car and when you realise that you lose 40% of what you just paid when you roll it off the showroom floor, why would you want to pay for a new car? It is always best to operate at the top end of your budget and see what you can get for your money. The best way gauging it, is by setting yourself a top price and then seeing what type of car you can get. You’ll find that some sellers are willing to move on price, so you could even look slightly over, but always go for what you can afford to spend. That way, you get a newer, safer and more reliable vehicle.
You don’t have to jump straight into an SUV or a 4X4 just because your family is growing. There are an array of compacts and crossovers that have taken the importance of space and safety into account and developed some really wonderful family cars. Just because the car is big, doesn’t mean that it is practical or safer than a smaller alternative. Smaller compacts or cross overs are condensed SUV’s, so you have all the benefit of the additional height, but you can easily park it! These will also come with running costs that are vastly reduced when compared to the 4X4 alternative. If you want to go even smaller still, which if you live in a busy city, may be a must, then there are some amazing hatch backs that have ingenious storage and ergonomic considerations, a lot of them have better planning and organisation than some of the big 4 wheel drive cars.
When it comes to buying a family car, you will have to say goodbye to your 2-door coupe that you have come to love and get a 5-door family friendly car. Don’t let that deter you though, there are some really wonderful 5 door cars that are not only exceptionally practical, they are quick too. Before you settle on one, make sure you have searched by safety rating to make sure you are getting the safest car for your family. From there, you can then choose the features that are most important to you. Don’t leave height down in last place, I promise your back will thank us if you think about this right from the off. And finally, you can never have too many cup holders, on long drives, you want to make sure you can access a coffee from wherever you are sat in the car.