Ask Terry Questions buying a car for teen driver

buying a car for teen driver

By Terry Savage on January 26, 2015 | Wild Card

Dear Terry,

We want to get our 16 year old driver a good newer or new car. Reasons are so she can drive herself to her own activities. Should we buy or lease.?

Terry Says:  My first thought is that a 16 year old doesn’t need her own car — and probably should start out using yours, so she develops a sense of responsibility for a “family car.”  But you asked a financial question, not a “social” one!  The first thing I would do is check with your insurance agent to find out how much it would cost to either add her as a driver to your cars, or if you buy (or lease) another car and add her as the primary user.  (You might be surprised.)  My advice would probably be to buy a good used car for her, and you’ll want to title it in your name.  If you have to make payments on the car, have her contribute a small amount from her allowance.  Leasing is like getting something for nothing, when in actuality though less expensive along the way, you wind up with “nothing for something” —  all those lease payments.  Buying would teach some values about saving up for a purchase, the cost of financing, and respect for making a car last longer by treating it well. Anyway, those are my thoughts —



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