Re: Should new drivers get a car?
posted at 9/7/2011 12:19 PM EDT
I would say no, no car for a new driver. But I am from a relatively non-car owning clan. Growing up, my parents had only one car for most of my childhood (even when we lived in Santa Monica for 3 years, where in true LA fashion, it seemed like everyone owned cars
not just a car). They only bought a second car when I was in middle school, and that was because my dad took a job that was not public transit accessible. (This was in Cleveland, so still a pretty good transit system, but not as good as Boston).
I did get my first car from them my junior year in college. My Dad finally got a new car (the one I bought from him was that one he got when I was in middle school) and sold me his. He had a ton of work done on it before he sold it to me, at a ridiculously cheap price, but he didn't want me to get a "free" car. Paying for it (and the insurance, gas, maintenance and other fees, like on campus parking) was a way of demonstrating that I really wanted the car.
My DH didn't even get his driver's license until we had been dating for years, so he didn't have a car. We are now a one car household, and I am not sure if we will ever be a two car household, unless I need one for getting to and from work.
If you do decide to get a car for your daughter, I would definitely make sure she pays for at least part of the cost, and is aware of what the actual costs involved are. I think teen drivers (even those who don't get their own cars) would be shocked to learn how expensive it is just for insurance, and many parents don't bother to explain it.