Bring on the Budget: Buying a Car for Your Teen

The time you’ve been dreading about as a parent has finally come. After 17 years and a nerve-wracking driving test, your child is now an adult who is legally permitted to drive on the streets of Malaysia.

car for teen

While they’re anxiously waiting to get their hands on their very own personal vehicle, you’re trying to figure out how to provide them with a car that works well, is safe, and will not break your bank in the long run.

Fret not, dear reader. This guide will help you prepare for the said situation mentally and monetarily so that you and your teen can choose the best car while strengthening your bond in the process!

Table of Contents

To Buy a New or Used Car?

The first question anyone will ask themselves in the quest to buy a car for their teenager will most likely be, “Should I buy a new or a used car?”.  Let’s delve into this list to find out which one works best for you.

1. Budget

It’s important to set a budget that you’re comfortable with as it will make it easier for you to choose a car for your son or daughter. With a set budget, you can easily shortlist the cars that you think would be suitable for your purchase and you can proceed to choose the car that is in line with your teenager’s needs or preference.

In addition to that, a budget will help set a proper down payment for the car you’re planning on buying and this will also provide some breathing room for future installments.

budget is great

Setting up a budget is easy. Here are some guidelines that you can use to set your spending limit:

  • Increase your deposit: When buying a used car, a larger deposit equals a lower monthly payment. Putting down at least 20 percent into your down payment will significantly lower your monthly payments in the future.
  • Limit your monthly car expenditure: You should be able to live comfortably and meet your lifestyle needs after deducting your debt which includes the monthly repayment amount for the car. The 50/30/20 budget method is a good rule to follow where your needs (which include car payments, utilities, loans) are 50 percent of your monthly income, while 30 percent should be your wants (shopping, dining) and 20 percent goes into your savings.
  • Shorten your loan term: Extending your loan term to nine years might seem like a great deal but when you consider the interest, you end up paying more than you should. It’s best to go with a shorter loan term of five or seven years if your budget allows it.

2. Financing

Once you have a budget, it is time to work out the financial aspect of owning a car. For this, it is better to have a thorough discussion with your teenager so that they can be prepared for what is coming in their future as a car owner.

For the sake of this guide, we will be looking at the financing option for two similar models – the brand-new Proton Saga 1.3L Premium AT and a used 2020 Proton Saga Premium 1.3L from CARSOME.

Let’s say you have RM10,000 that you can fork out for the down payment and a monthly budget of RM500 for the monthly installment. The brand-new Proton Saga costs RM39,800.00. With a down payment of RM10,000 and five-year loan with 3.5 percent interest rate, you will end up with a monthly installment of RM583.58, as calculated here.

Meanwhile, the used 2020 Proton Saga Premium 1.3L can cost as low as RM35,200 on CARSOME and with a down payment of RM9,973 plus a five-year year loan, you will end up with a monthly installment of only RM494.

used saga financing at carsome

So, it is RM583.58 vs RM494, which means you are paying 15 percent less! As the breadwinner of the family, you might be able to take on any of these payments, but if you’re going to hand over this responsibility to your teenager once they become a working adult, this surely needs some consideration between the both of you.

3. Maintenance

After considering your ability to finance the car for your teen, the next most important thing that you need to look at would be the maintenance aspect.

maintaining a car

If you’re going with a new car, you will be advised to maintain the car at authorized service centers only, to guarantee proper workmanship as well as to abide by the warranty.

But on the flip side, these authorized service centers limit your choices when it comes to maintaining the car. Bear in mind that maintenance at authorized service centers might be on the expensive side sometimes if you continue beyond your warranty period.

Meanwhile, if you go for used cars, you are free to choose which workshop to send it for service. This works great if you already have a trusted workshop that you’ve been working with, even more so if the workshop is close to home and it fits right in your monthly maintenance budget!

To top it off, you don’t have to worry about calling any authorized centers if the car has a sudden breakdown. You can pull up mobile applications like Pomen on your smartphone and you have certified professionals coming to look at the car in just a few taps, anytime you want! 

Read: 5 Reasons Your Car Breaks Down & How to Get Help

4. Safety

When it comes to buying a car for a teenager, safety would be a major concern for parents. Needless to say, brand new cars are now equipped with a lot of safety systems and measures to ensure the well-being of the passenger, but it all comes with a price.

For example, let’s look at the brand-new Proton Saga 1.3L Premium AT. At the price of RM39,800.00, it offers twin front SRS airbags, Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD), Electronic Stability Control (ESC) with Traction Control System, Brake Assist, Hill Hold Assist, Front and Rear Parking Sensors, as well as a reverse parking camera, all covered by Proton warranty since they’re brand new.

And then we have the used 2020 Proton Saga Premium 1.3L, a similar car with similar safety specifications, that goes for only RM35,200 at CARSOME. That’s a saving of more than RM4,000 and CARSOMEalso gives a one-year warranty if you buy a CARSOMECertified car.

Dealership or Online?

Now that you’ve decided on which car you’re going to buy for your teenager, it’s time to decide on which route to choose.

Looking for a Dealership

If you’ve chosen to buy a new car, you might prefer to go to a dealership to seal the deal. Who wouldn’t, right? They’re usually located somewhere comfortable where friendly sales advisors help you with the car that you’re planning to buy. It’s great, only if you can find a dealership that meets all your needs.

But what happens when you don’t? You might end up with less than exemplary service and if they don’t have enough stock, you probably have to wait a few months or even a year to get the car you’ve planned on buying.

Also, you’re going to have to spend a lot of effort (and gas money) to settle the deal with a physical dealership that satisfies your requirements. No teenager would want to spend their day jumping from one dealership to another.

Not to mention we’re currently in a pandemic, so it’s best to refrain from doing any excessive traveling.

Buying a Car Online

Buying cars online used to be just a dream, but not anymore! Online car platforms such as CARSOME offers a convenient and trusted solution where you can browse for cars online.

You can even make a booking for a test drive (we do home test drives as well) by submitting your details and a CARSOME Consultant will set it up for you. With only a few clicks, you can find all the cars you want in the comfort of your home, without having to leave your bed. 

When you purchase the car online, paying for your purchase is easier as well, since CARSOME supports various payment methods.

carsome used car listing

Read: Here Are CARSOME’s Hassle-free Payment Methods

However, a major concern when it comes to buying a car online is that you might be worried about not being able to physically inspect and interact with the car you’ve chosen. Well, time to throw that concern away because CARSOME listings provide a detailed report with clear pictures (some even come with a 360-degree view!) of the car you’ve selected.

Talk about convenience and full-on transparency!

Decisions, Decisions…

We hope this guide has helped you in coming to a proper decision when it comes to buying a car for your teenage son or daughter. Owning a car is a major step forward in the life of a teenager. As a parent, it is important for you to have a little talk with your teen first, before gracing them with a car to ensure they are ready to accept such responsibility. 

Once they understand the reality of owning a car, they could prepare themselves mentally and physically to become a proper car owner, and you would have one less thing to worry about in the future.

Just Make It CARSOME with an Unbreakable Promise

If you ever decide on getting a used car for your teenager, why not make it CARSOME? With a huge inventory of quality used cars, it won’t be difficult to find one that suits your teenager. On top of that, if you get a CARSOME Certified car, you are guaranteed to get a ride that delivers the CARSOME Promise.

This is our promise to you. 

  • Five-day money-back guarantee: If you buy a used car from CARSOME and you happen not to like it, you can return it back to us within five days to get your full amount back. No questions asked! 
  • Professional inspection: All CARSOME Certified cars go through an inspection that covers 175-points to ensure it is free from major accidents and flood damage. 
  • One-year warranty: Our journey with you does not stop after you buy a car. We will give you an extended warranty to ensure your vehicle is covered in your first year.
  • Fixed price: The price you see on the listing is the actual full price of the car with absolutely no hidden fees. We practice full transparency in our costs to ensure you know exactly what you are getting. 

With that, we do hope that this helps you make the right choice for your teen. You can also check our monthly promotions for even better savings. 

Read more: A Complete Guide on Buying or Selling Used Cars in Malaysia