You might have reached a point where you’re thinking about getting another family vehicle. You may have one or even two already. There are various reasons why you may wish to get another one, though, such as a teenager who’s about to get their driver’s license.
Let’s talk about a few reasons to get that new vehicle, and we’ll also discuss some reasons why sticking with the number of cars you have may be the optimal solution.
Driving Can Be Dangerous
We’ll start with the reasons why you may want to avoid getting a new car. We’ll say that the scenario we just described is about to occur. Your teen son or daughter is about to take their driving test, and you think it’s likely they’re going to pass and get their license.
That’s an exciting time for them, but maybe you feel like your teen is not mature enough to get their own car yet. Perhaps you feel like they’re reckless, or they’re not confident enough to have a vehicle they can take into any driving situation that they like, such as on the highway or during heavy rainstorms.
You have every reason to hesitate before you get them a car. Last year, almost 40,000 people died in motor vehicle collisions. It’s hard not to think that might happen to your teen. They might be taller than they used to be, but they’re still a long way from fully grown.
You might tell them you won’t buy a car for them right when they get their license. You’d prefer they wait a couple of years, or else they can earn their own money to buy one, thereby teaching them some responsibility.
The Teen Brain is Not Finished Developing
Teenagers are not always capable of making the best decisions. For instance, they might commit some act of vandalism to impress their friends, not thinking about how it might affect their future.
The reason for this is that the teen brain has not fully developed. The brain does not finish growing until an individual is in their early twenties.
For this reason, you can tell your teen not to ingest alcohol or illegal drugs and then get behind the wheel, but that does not guarantee they are going to listen to you. They might agree when you tell them not to, but then, when they’re around their friends, the peer pressure to do something foolish might be too strong.
You Might Worry that Something Will Distract Them
You may feel like you don’t want to get your teen a car because you think various things distract them easily. You might think that if they go for a ride in their vehicle, they may pay more attention to their friend in the passenger’s seat than to the road ahead of them.
They might try to text and drive if they bring their smartphone with them everywhere they go. They could smash into the car ahead of them if they’re trying to find a radio station they like.
Again, you can tell them that you’re not comfortable getting a vehicle for them until they’re a little bit older.
You’re Tired of Driving Your Family Members Around
Now, on to some reasons why you might want to get that second or third vehicle. It could be that you’re sick of being the family chauffeur. You may feel like you spend all of your time driving your teen over to a friend’s house, the movies, the mall, or anywhere else they want to spend their time.
Maybe your teen has some extracurricular activities like soccer or band practice, and you would rather they have their own car so they can get to and from these events. You can also buy them their own vehicle so they can get to and from school. This way, you can drive straight to work without having to drop them off.
You Want Your Teen to Get the Experience
You might feel like your teen is old and responsible enough that they can act reasonably if you get them their own car. You’ve talked to them about never ingesting drugs or alcohol and driving, and you’ve told them not to use their phone to talk or text while driving as well.
Getting them their own car might be good practice for them. Perhaps they’re going off to college out of state after high school, and you feel like they’ll need a vehicle at that point. Letting them get some practice beforehand will come in handy rather than learning once they’re already at a big university.
You Can Incentivize Getting a Vehicle
You might feel like you can incentivize your teen getting their own vehicle once they have their license. You can give them your old, hand-me-down car, and you will get yourself a new one. This is a time-honored tradition, but you can tell them you’ll only do that if they can prove how responsible they are.
You might have them prove that in several different ways. For example, you could have them keep their room clean, mow the lawn, do the dishes, vacuum the house, and so forth for an entire year. You might have them maintain a sparkling grade point average.
You can come up with other ways that your kid can prove their responsibility to you. Only if they can fulfill all the requirements will you give them your old car.
This way, you can be sure that your teen will behave well, and you’re also making them earn the car instead of just giving them the keys. They will enjoy the vehicle more if they feel like they sacrificed and toiled to get it.
You will have to weigh both of the slate’s sides before determining whether to get a new vehicle or not. There will probably be reasons both for and against it, but one side will be more compelling than the other.