■ StatePoint Media / Contributed
College is a time when many young people buy their first cars. But with the rising cost of a degree, students and their families will want to ensure they are getting a good value on vehicle purchases.
Here are some great ways to get more bang for your buck:
Go certified pre-owned. The last thing busy college students need is to sink time and money into regularly fixing a clunker. Rather than purchase a standard used car with an unknown history, consider a Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) vehicle. CPOs are often a safer bet, as they come with a warranty and have gone through a multipoint inspection to ensure quality. Some contracts even include 24/7 roadside assistance.
Seek special deals. You’ll want to get around campus or commute to your first job in style, so look out for special deals and programs offered to students that can help you find a fun, modern car with all the latest safety and technology features at an affordable price. For example, MINI USA is offering the 2019 MINI Oxford Edition exclusively to college students and recent graduates. This includes current full and part-time students of any two or four year accredited college or university, any recent college graduates within 12 months of their graduation, as well as students enrolled in post-bachelor’s degree programs, such as graduate school, law school or medical school. For no additional cost, this edition offers $6,900 worth of optional equipment as standard, including a connected infotainment system, rear-view camera, park distance control, a dual-pane panoramic moonroof and heated seats.
Factor in other costs. Remember, the cost of maintaining a car also includes auto insurance. Take this into consideration when determining what you can afford. You can stretch your budget with a bit of comparison shopping and by looking into discounts that suit your lifestyle. For example, some policies offer breaks for safe driving, good grades, low mileage, community service participation and more.
Buying a car while paying for college or settling into a first job may sound overwhelming, but by doing a little research and keeping your options open, there are many ways to affordably secure and maintain a great car.