Maintaining Your Vehicle

Key Takeaways

  • Most cars come with a basic warranty package, but an extended warranty option costs extra and isn’t necessarily worth the money.
  • The average vehicle’s lifetime is eight years or 150,000 miles and on average, costs $914 to maintain per year.
  • If you pay your car off after five years, and you continue to save the same monthly car payment over the last three years, you can use that money to help pay for your next vehicle, pay down debt, or save for other goals you have.

Auto Loan Basics

Key Takeaways

  • When getting an auto loan, you want to be sure you know what’s involved so you are not caught off guard with hidden fees or payments.
  • The elements to consider when getting an auto loan are your budget, savings, credit score, amortization, depreciation, and buying new or used.
  • You can get a loan through a dealership, but be sure to check on deals straight from financial institutions as well.

To Buy or Lease a New Car

Key Takeaways

  • Leasing limits your mileage, but you don’t tie up cash, you drive a late-model car, repairs are limited, and you don’t have to sell.
  • Buy if you’re looking at used vehicles that you plan to drive for three-plus years and you don’t expect major lifestyle changes.

Used Car—Double the Benefits!

Key Takeaways

  • Don’t tie up your cash when you’re young, but you have to be smart about your loan terms.
  • Making slightly larger, or more frequent, payments than you’re required to can add up to HUGE savings down the road.
  • A used car is often better than new when you’re young—especially when the savings is applied to higher-rate student loans and credit cards.