Top 5 Ways for Work-at-Home Moms to Save on Common Car Expenses
Even if you don’t have to make a commute to get to work each day, you’ll still face plenty of car expenses as a mom on the go. Between running household errands and getting the kids to school, the doctor, and other activities, you’ll rack up a lot of miles on the old minivan. And you may even find yourself leaving the house to meet clients or drop off products on occasion. So you might be looking for a few good ways to cut costs when it comes to this necessary expenditure. Here are some that are sure to help you save.
- Lease or loan? This is a question that many moms, business owners, and adults in general face when buying a car. And there are financial benefits and drawbacks to both. With a lease, you can likely secure significantly lower monthly payments. And when the life of the lease has ended, you can finance the remainder of your car purchase for less because you will already have paid off a portion of the car. But you could face penalties if you trade it in for a new model with any damage or overage on miles. And if you continue to lease you’ll have car payments forever without ever owning your vehicle. You’ll just have to weigh the pros and cons to figure out which option better suits your financial situation.
- Fuel economy. There are so many cars on the market that offer fuel efficiency that you’re sure to find one that’s right for you. Although you likely need a spacious vehicle to transport your kids, that doesn’t necessarily preclude you from options like alternative fuels, clean diesel, or hybrid or electric motors. Some are more expensive than others up front, but you may be eligible for government incentives to cut this cost and you’ll definitely save at the pump.
- Easy maintenance. When you’re counting every penny, adopting a DIY attitude is a must. So rather than springing for pricy oil and filter changes every three months, learn how to do them yourself. I know what you’re thinking: this is not for you. But that’s where you’re wrong. Anyone can learn to change their own oil and do basic automotive maintenance. It’s a messy job, to be sure, but it’s not terribly difficult, what with online tutorials, and it can save you a ton of money on annual maintenance costs.
- Ride a bike. Depending on the age of your kids and how many you have, it could be difficult to use a bike instead of a car. But with a bicycle trailer or a baby seat on the back you could take one or two kids with you to run errands sans fuel and other car costs. It’s also a great way to get some exercise.
- Deductions. Here’s the deal with deductions. If you spend most of your time working at home, you’ll almost certainly save more by claiming a home office. Heck, going to cheapcarinsurance.net could deliver greater savings if you rarely use your car in a work-at-home capacity. But if you happen to drive frequently for your job, deducting a “work vehicle” may be worth looking into. At the very least you should discuss the possibility with your tax prep specialist.
Image source: savvysugar.com (shutterstock)