Or something like that.
Thing 1 is 17. She wants a car.
I really don’t think Thing 1 should have a car. I think that she should depend more on her bike. But instead, Thing 1 does crap like ride her bike to work (which is only 2 miles from home) then call for a ride home for her and her bike. Lazy, lazy kid. And when I let her borrow my car, she has to pull the seat into the steering wheel in order to reach the peddles. Then she LEAVES IT THAT WAY!!!! So annoying when I try to climb into my car first thing in the morning and I break my knees. Grrrrrr.
Anyway, I guess we’re buying her a car. But we’re not just handing her a car. We have made some rules:
First, she doesn’t get to own it. She had wanted to use her small savings to buy a car outright. I think a cheap old car for a teenage girl is a bad idea. She won’t be able to afford repairs and she will have no idea how to handle emergencies when the car breaks down. (I must say, at least at this point, my intention is to give her the car at some point. Perhaps when she’s graduated college. But she will have to earn the car. She will have to prove she is responsible. )
Second, she has to provide the down payment. Instead of using her money to buy one crappy car, she only needs to provide the down payment and then she’ll get a much more reliable car than she could have afforded on her own.
Third, we pick the car. She can have a say in it, but ultimately, it’s our car. We will be making the monthly payments. We will be paying for maintenance and repairs. We will be covering insurance and, I assume, a large amount of the gas.
I initially really was leaning towards buying her a brand new car. I would love to buy her a Civic. But my husband and I would like to keep the price under $12000. So, used car it is. We want less than 50,000 miles on it. Preferrably, we will buy a certified pre-owned car so there is some warranty coverage.
I decided to do a little research before we went out to actually look at any cars. I googled “good cars for teen drivers”. I found articles from Forbes and Consumer Reports. Those both seemed like fine places to start….until I saw the number one cars on each list.
Forbes lists some Audi as it’s top pick best-car-for-teen-drivers. Consumer Report lists an Acura. If I can’t drive an Audi, I’m sure not buying one for Thing 1. Why don’t we just get her a limo and a driver? That would be even safer. Maybe I should check the publication dates on those articles. Perhaps they’re April Fools jokes. Because otherwise those are completely ridiculous, unrealistic choices. My husband wondered if teens had written the list. Then he looked to see where a Camero showed up on the list.
I’ve decided that the lists are worthless. We are seriously considering a 2011 Hyundai Accent. We read some owner reviews that were really positive. I love the they have the auxiliary jack standard but power windows and door locks aren’t on some of the lower models. That is truly having priorities in the right place; I am not being sarcastic.
I still would rather have another Honda but I don’t want to afford that for Thing 1. Maybe I’ll buy a midlife crisis car for myself and give her my Accord. Whatever car we chose will save my knees from loads of bruises.