The following article is a guest post
Cars are a major component of our living costs. With around 95% of US households having at least one car – and with transport taking up around 15% of our annual budgets on average – cutting car costs is something that could benefit us all. From being more careful about where we get our car insurance quotes to changing the car we drive, there are quite a few things we can do to spend less on motoring.
Read on to find out about five ways you can cut your car costs.
It may sound obvious, but one major way we can cut the costs of driving is simply to do it less. The majority of trips involve a car these days, and 85% of us use our cars to get to work. Of course, there are some journeys where a car is definitely required and, if you live in the middle of nowhere, walking to the grocery store to pick up some basics might not be an option.
However, most of us could drive less if we put a bit of thought and effort into it. Plus, it’s recommended that we get around half an hour’s exercise every day, so leaving the car in the garage and walking down to the store could be a good option for more reasons than just financial ones.
Switch to regular gas
Many of us like to use premium gas in our cars – after all, why not use the very best? This makes sense for some cars, but most vehicles run perfectly well on regular gasoline. You could save up to 20% on the cost of your fuel by doing this, depending on where you buy your gas. Also, if you live in an area where there is a large number of gas stations, shop around rather than going for the first one you see. You can find price differences of up to 10% in a relatively small area, which will obviously have an impact on the cost of your gas.
Shop for insurance
Another trick when you’re looking for ways to cut the costs of motoring is to shop around for your car insurance. Different companies will offer different policies with different standard cover and extras. You might also find that two insurance companies offer the same cover for markedly different prices, so take a look at a couple of price comparison websites to work out where you can get the best deal.
Don’t modify your car
Also, try and avoid modifying your car wherever possible. Not only do the modifications themselves cost money that you don’t really need to spend, but they can also bump up the cost of your car insurance. Even small changes such as alloy wheels can have a big impact on how much you pay for insurance, so try and resist the temptation if you can!
Buy an efficient car
Finally, buying a more efficient car might cost you some money up front but it could save you significant amounts over time. For instance, a car that uses fuel more efficiently will help you at the gas pump and if you buy a car that’s renowned for its safety, it will also help your car insurance costs. It’s definitely one to ponder.