RAC Cars News


Car Ownership On A Budget

By raccars Published

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There's no avoiding the fact that car ownership is an expensive business, but usually a necessary one. The most obvious way to keep running costs low is to buy an economical car with low CO2 emissions, but apart from that, there are a number of ways to make your money stretch further.

Selling your car

When you're selling your car, it's tempting to take what appears to be the easiest and most convenient path, straight to internet car purchasing companies. The lack of legwork involved makes this sound like a very attractive option, but you are unlikely to get the sort of price you will be looking for. However, if this is how you decide to sell your car, get quotes from a number of companies before selling, to get the best price possible.

If you are selling your car privately or to a dealership, pay some attention to the condition of your vehicle. A full valet service could be repaid at resale time, while repairs to minor cosmetic issues to wheels, bodywork and the interior, could make your car far more desirable to buyers.


While insurance providers are regularly criticised for a failure to reward customer loyalty, they all put plenty of effort into gaining new business, so rather than letting your insurance renew automatically, go online and negotiate a better deal with another insurance company if necessary. Shopping around will almost certainly be rewarded with a lower premium.


Don't let the worst happen before you pay some attention to your car's well being. A timely replacement of your battery could save you a significant amount - as one of the most common sources of breakdown call outs, recovery companies are able to charge premiums for battery replacements. Check your battery's health regularly and replace it as soon as it starts to falter.


Whether you are buying fuel or food, motorway service stations are expensive - to the tune of potentially 10 pence extra per litre of fuel and possibly double the price charged by supermarkets for drinks and sandwiches. With a little forward planning, you should be able to organise your journeys so that you refuel somewhere cheaper.


Consider what's covered in a warranty very carefully before you invest. Some are well worth the money you'll pay but others cover every issue except those you need and others have inconvenient clauses, such as a ceiling on payouts - an automatic gearbox failure on a premium vehicle can run into thousands to repair, so a cost limitation of £500 is completely unhelpful.

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