5 Tips for Buying Your Teenager their First Car

Buying your teenager their first car can seem like an absolutely harrowing experience. Not only are you fighting back your fears about their safety, but you're also fighting them about the car that they've already decided they want. By following a few specific tips you can make sure that you get a car that both your teenager and you are happy with.

1. Make Sure It's Cheap... And Insured
There's a reason that people used to buy secondhand cars for their kids, and it wasn't all about the initial price. If your kid is like 90% of the other kids out there, they will crash this car, and they will crash it fast. Crashing a car is like a right of passage, and all that one can hope is that the damage won't be that big. Teenagers usually don't like cheap cars, so you can consider compromising with them on something specific, like the model or the colour.

2. Get The Safest Vehicle Possible
As a corollary to the above, the vehicle should also be safe, not fun. Most times a teenager damages a car it'll be purely cosmetic damage, but a parent does have to remember that a teenager is still just learning about how to drive. There is the very real possibility that a teenager will get into a messy accident, and in that case you'll want the car to be protected. A tiny sedan may be cheap, but it may also not have the appropriate safety features. When in doubt, choose safety over everything else.

3. Decide On A Price Before Going To The Lot
If you don't decide on the price before going to the lot, you run the very real risk your teenager is going to see something absolutely fantastic that he or she really needs. Setting the price point beforehand makes it absolutely clear to your teenager that there's only a specific subset of cars that they can look at that day.

4. Consider Buying From A Friend Or Family
Hand-me-down cars are actually the best first car for a teenager for a variety of reasons. When you buy a car from a friend or family member, you already know the car's history in and out. You can get a great deal on it because you don't have to pay any dealership fees, which lets your teenager get on the road worry-free. If you have multiple kids, it's even better, because you can hand the kids down cars from one to the other.

5. Don't Be Swayed By The Pleading
Teenagers can be quite convincing. The final step in buying your teenager their first car is in remaining firm. Teenagers will say and do almost anything to try to get their way, but as a parent, you know what's best. Getting a teenager an expensive car is usually a costly mistake down the line when the car needs to be repaired or replaced.

When handled properly, buying your teenager a car can be a great way to bond with your teenager while helping to usher them into adulthood. By setting the appropriate guidelines and boundaries you can have a pleasant experience while avoiding a fight on the car lot.

Steve is the parent of a 17 yr old who recently went through the tedious process of finding a suitable first car for his son. He had already spent a considerable amount on driving lessons and wanted to make sure his son was driving a safe car that was within their agreed budget. He wanted to share his experience with other parents in a similar situation. 


  1. Mukhang di ko carry regaluhan ng car son ko now Sis. Maybe later. Enough na muna yung family car. Hehe.


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