Buying and driving your own car is a rite of passage for a lot of people. It is important because it signifies that the person is becoming an adult who is independent and responsible. Increasingly, it also suggests that the young person is quite wealthy. The decision to start driving is one that many young people are not making. A study conducted at the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute found that between 1983 and 2014, the number of 16-year-olds with licenses fell by a startling 47%. This decline is mirrored with other age groups too, with 69% of 19-year-olds having a license in 2014, compared with 87.3% in 1983. The reasons for this are varied. Some have suggested that since a lot of young people now communicate with their friends so easily on their smartphones, there is not such a great need to actually see them in person. In fact, the number of drivers has been found to be inversely proportional to the number of internet users. However, it may also be because driving has simply become more expensive. This is particularly true when it comes to the cost of insurance, which last year was rising at the fastest rate in thirteen years. However, this does not mean that the cost of driving is prohibitively high. There are ways to make it cheaper. It is, after all, exceptionally convenient. Here are a few ways that you can make it work for you:
Approaching a bank or lender to borrow money for a car is not all that different from seeking to get a loan for anything else, whether it is a mortgage for a house, startup capital for a business, or a personal loan for something like medical bills. They will check you out pretty thoroughly and being met with approval relies to a great degree on how prepared you are. If your credit rating is not as good as it could be, you should pay off your existing debts as quickly as you can before applying. You should also apply to be on the electoral roll as that will make you seem responsible. However, you do not just need to impress them. If you shop around and find the best car insurance quote, you may be able to negotiate a better price by threatening to go with one the company’s competitors. It works because that is how the market works: if a company is not offering you a competitive market rate, you can gently remind them that you will go elsewhere. They may start to treat you better.
Once you have got some insurance coverage, there are things that you can do to keep the cost down. Driving carefully will obviously help. As soon as you have an accident, your rate will be adjusted to account for the perceived greater likelihood of another payout in the future. Another thing that you can do is not modify your car. Fitting a turbo engine can see your premiums rise by 132%, while doing something as modest as decorating your car with decals and stripes can see you suffer a 22% bump.