How to pick the perfect family car Featured

Shopping for a family car that’s safe, practical and meets all your needs without breaking the bank?

Join the many families who are struggling to choose the ideal vehicle. Picking that perfect car will always be a challenge, but many people find it impossible to know where to start or how to prioritise what they want. Here are just a few of the main points you need to consider, and the criteria you should base your search against…

1. What’s your budget?

You’ll always want the best value for your money, but there’s no point in setting your heart on a car that’s thousands over what you can afford. Begin by sitting down and working out your budget; think about your realistic monthly running costs, ask yourself how many miles you cover each day, how much this equates to in petrol, whether you need to pay for parking, and so on. Now you know what percentage of your monthly income this takes up, consider how much you can put towards buying a car on finance, leasing a vehicle, or whether you will be paying cash.

2. Safety comes first

Safety is a top priority for every family, so once you’ve narrowed down your price bracket, make sure you look at vendors and websites that display both safety rankings and genuine customer reviews. For example, AutoTrader.co.za has entire sections on vehicle descriptions that detail their safety features. You can also cross-check these with the real reviews left by customers on the site. You can check out this handy article here about the top safest family cars.

3. Size matters

Your next consideration should always be size. On the one hand, you’ll need to consider room for booster seats, baby essentials, prams, and so on – in fact, it might sound strange, but don’t be afraid to take a couple of items with you when car shopping for dimensions. On the other hand, think about who else will be using the car. For example, do you have any pets who will need additional harnesses? You should always go for a five door rather than a three if you can afford it, not just because you’ll struggle to put a booster seat in the back, but for elderly relatives who might have difficulty getting in and out.

4. Purpose is important

Finally, what will you be using your car for? Is it mainly for commuting with plenty of motorway driving? Or do you have any hobbies that will affect the type of car you choose? All these decisions will have a knock-on effect for the ideal type of car you need. For example, commuters might wish to opt for a diesel engine as it’s far more economical over longer distances. However, those who go fishing or camping on weekends might need a more powerful engine and the capacity to pull a trailer.  

Did you find this post useful? How did you pick your family car? Leave your comments in the space below…

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