How much do you recommend I spend on my first car? Watch

Thelastdiadem
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Hi guys,

I haven't actually passed yet but I thought is start looking for cars now so I can buy one ASAP after I pass, as it'll be a lot more convenient for me not to be messing about for ages looking for one later.

I've read a few threads on here that suggest spending up to 2k which I'm more than happy to do, but I'm wondering whether I should spend a bit more.

I'm 18 and I've been learning for around a year (On and off, but currently a lot more consistent). I will mainly need a car to get me to and from work which is in another city and takes about half an hour to drive to depending on traffic.

I'm currently on a salary of 22k which is due to rise significantly in the next half a year so I will be fine to make all insurance etc payments after buying the car. I've saved up a good few thousand which I'm pretty happy to spend on a good car that won't break down on me.

Ideally I'd like to buy a Seat Ibiza or Mazda 2.
But if I was to stick to a 2k budget, I'd probably have to settle for a Corsa or an older Mazda 2.

What do you recommend?

Thanks!
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DrawTheLine
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Spend as much as you want/can afford really. I think my brother's first car was £5-6k.
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adam271
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2k is sensible.
Your gonna make most of your mistakes in your first car. Better if it's not expensive.
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black tea
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Agree - you will most likely damage it in some way within weeks so there is no point in buying one that's too expensive.
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Thelastdiadem
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What do you recommend withing the £2k price range that I should look into buying? I just want a good car that I will feel safe in whilst driving on the motorway.
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BurstingBubbles
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Better to spend a bit more to make sure it's reliable. People saying about damage - that can always be fixed. I have a few minor scratches on mine which I got in the first year of driving and I've had them for a few years now without problems. I'll get them fixed if I want to sell my car, it's just aesthetics as it's not the actual body work or rusty etc.

Factor in insurance, road tax, MOT, service, running costs, petrol etc
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Thelastdiadem
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(Original post by BurstingBubbles)
Better to spend a bit more to make sure it's reliable. People saying about damage - that can always be fixed. I have a few minor scratches on mine which I got in the first year of driving and I've had them for a few years now without problems. I'll get them fixed if I want to sell my car, it's just aesthetics as it's not the actual body work or rusty etc.

Factor in insurance, road tax, MOT, service, running costs, petrol etc
Thanks for this

How much would you say Insurance, Road Tax, MOT servicing, running costs and petrol come to a month?

On the average month I get £1600+. Around £350 goes on my current monthly outgoings, Inc. driving lessons (Which obviously won't need factoring in after
Passing) so surely that leaves enough to cover the costs?
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BurstingBubbles
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(Original post by Thelastdiadem)
Thanks for this

How much would you say Insurance, Road Tax, MOT servicing, running costs and petrol come to a month?

On the average month I get £1600+. Around £350 goes on my current monthly outgoings, Inc. driving lessons (Which obviously won't need factoring in after
Passing) so surely that leaves enough to cover the costs?
Insurance will like be your biggest expense. It will completely depend on where you live, if you can put your parents/relatives with lots of driving experience on the policy (this can bring the cost down). My first year was pretty low because I live in a good area, I think it was about £700 - you could easily be looking that it's in the thousands. You might be able to pay monthly though.

In terms of tax this will depend on the car. Some cars are £0 (If they are smaller engines/Better for the environment). Usually its up to £100 on a small car. Mines £120 a year. It shouldn't be too much more than that.

Service and MOT again depends if you need any work doing to the car. If not then about £100 (depending on where you get it done). I can't remember exactly what I pay but the MOT is usually cheaper.

Petrol depends on how much you drive obviously. For work and general driving to places I get through about 1/2 to 3/4 of a tank a week so about £30-£40. That's about 200 miles.

Always good to have some extra money set aside for if things go wrong. Even little things like screen wash and bulb changes

Also you'll likely want break down cover e.g AA. That's about £80-100 a year if you get things like home start included. See what deals you can get!

Hope that helps
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BurstingBubbles
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(Original post by Thelastdiadem)
What do you recommend withing the £2k price range that I should look into buying? I just want a good car that I will feel safe in whilst driving on the motorway.
I was advised to get a 1.2 or 1.25 litre engine (rather than 1 litre) for motor way driving due to them generally having more power. So my car is 1.25 litre engine but my budget was higher. A larger engine may increase the cost of insurance and tax though.
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ThuggerThugger
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I spent 1500
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Thelastdiadem
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(Original post by BurstingBubbles)
Insurance will like be your biggest expense. It will completely depend on where you live, if you can put your parents/relatives with lots of driving experience on the policy (this can bring the cost down). My first year was pretty low because I live in a good area, I think it was about £700 - you could easily be looking that it's in the thousands. You might be able to pay monthly though.

In terms of tax this will depend on the car. Some cars are £0 (If they are smaller engines/Better for the environment). Usually its up to £100 on a small car. Mines £120 a year. It shouldn't be too much more than that.

Service and MOT again depends if you need any work doing to the car. If not then about £100 (depending on where you get it done). I can't remember exactly what I pay but the MOT is usually cheaper.

Petrol depends on how much you drive obviously. For work and general driving to places I get through about 1/2 to 3/4 of a tank a week so about £30-£40. That's about 200 miles.

Always good to have some extra money set aside for if things go wrong. Even little things like screen wash and bulb changes

Also you'll likely want break down cover e.g AA. That's about £80-100 a year if you get things like home start included. See what deals you can get!

Hope that helps
Thank youuu!!
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Jess.1819
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Yeah I agree with going for a newer car, which means it’ll be more expensive but likely to be cheaper on running and more reliable (saving money on that side) I’ve had my car since before I passed which is just coming up on the 1 year mark now and I’ve not damaged it once other than a barely noticeable scrape on one wheel hub (can’t tell it’s there unless you really look or it’s pointed out) where I scraped the curb parking once so damage wise obviously depends on your confidence and ability but I always think you’re more likely to be careful if you spent more on the car which is better all round really.

I have a 1.0 2015 Ford Fiesta if you’re interested, absolutely love it, zero road tax and it drives amazingly - always important to look into the car before deciding on one (TEST DRIVE IS SO IMPORTANT), see what issues others of the same model have had and look at its stats and insurance but yeah If you can afford it I’d get a newer one as long as you’re not likely to scrape it up a lot aha.
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JackSR
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If you find a few cars you like, just do some research into them to see how reliable they are.
Insurance is probably going to be your biggest expense, as I can't get a quote under £2500 for any car, but it might be different in your area.
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PTMalewski
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Cars are like teeth. If you don't know how to take care of them, and don't have them 'serviced' regularly, they'll cost you lots of money in unexpected time.
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PTMalewski
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(Original post by Thelastdiadem)

I've read a few threads on here that suggest spending up to 2k which I'm more than happy to do, but I'm wondering whether I should spend a bit more.

!
No. Price has literally nothing to do with car's actual condition. A little car in excellent condition costs as much as a premium wreck of the same age.

Buy a car for 2, and be prepared to a spend couple hundreds on routine maintenance each year, and thousands if anything bigger fails. (If you bough a car for 20, similar or even higher costs would apply)

Age is not a factor. A 10 years old car can run nicely giving no trouble, and a 2 years old can blow a head gasket, forcing you to have the engine dismantled, cooling and oil channels cleaned and cylinder head re-polished.
Everything depends on how the car's been treated and was it serviced properly.
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username5114988
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No more than £5,000.
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Lyndsey.95
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I'd pay 2k maximum.
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