Choosing Your First Car as a College Student

When you start college, you are probably thinking of owning your own car. There are many things to keep an eye out for when choosing the right vehicle.

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When you start college, you are probably thinking of owning your own car. There are many things to keep an eye out for when choosing the right vehicle.

The beginning of college can be a difficult transition for many students. At this point in their lives, students are becoming more independent and taking on responsibilities, like finding a job and paying their own bills. One of the biggest responsibilities that college students can look forward to is owning their own car. They don’t want to rely on their parents to drive them to college or work, and taking the bus can take up most of your day. For college students, owning a car allows for more freedom and responsibility in their lives. So where do you begin when choosing a car? This guide will help you make the right decision when it comes to choosing your very first car.

What To Look Out For  

When looking for a car, you have to keep a look out for any damage inside or outside the car. Look for bumps, scratches and chips in the windshield. Bumps and scratches may not affect the performance of the car, but they are costly to remove. If they are minor they may be overlooked, but severe ones should be avoided. As for chips in the windshield, they start off small but they will continue to grow over time, so watch out for that. When inspecting the tires, make sure the tire pressure is good and that they are all the same brand. Check the frame to make sure there is no rust or any serious damage. 

When you are done checking the outside of the car make sure the inside is just as good. Make sure the AC works, the seats are in relatively good condition, and everything is functioning properly.

At this point you are going to want to take the car for a test drive. If you want to bring your local mechanic that is all the better. If you are on your own, then you need to feel it out and make sure things are running smoothly. You should also make sure it has gotten its most recent smog check. I would recommend buying from a dealership rather than your neighbor from across the street.

What Kind of Car You Should Get

Your first car should be something reliable with good gas mileage. Unless your parents are fabulously wealthy, don’t expect a Tesla or any other fancy car. I would recommend an older car within a $3,000 range, with low miles and low insurance rates. It is recommended that the odometer should fall between 120,000-150,000 miles. And depending on the type of car you get, it will affect your insurance rates (go for a four door vehicle). Car brands I would recommend are Honda, Hyundai, Subaru, and Toyota; these are some of the most reliable cars on the road. I would personally keep an eye out for a Honda Civic. They are reliable, get good gas mileage, and are usually cheap. I would say keep Honda at the top of your car wish list because I feel that, out of the four brands I mentioned, they are the most reliable (try to stay away from Nissan).  A friend of mine has a 2011 Honda Insight and he loves it (he usually pays $30 for gas every two weeks). Keep these in mind when choosing your car and it will benefit you in the long run.

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