To buy or Not to buy? The Pros and Cons of Car Ownership

To buy or not to buy? That is the question. When considering car hire, Sydney might seem like a city where you need your own ride. On the other hand, entering the world of car insurance quotes and fuzzy dice can seem daunting. This quick guide to the pros and cons of car ownership might help you consider your options.

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Photo: Alex ’77


Cars are a major investment, expensive to own and maintain. For price comparison, let’s look at a glacier white 3 door Toyota Yaris with auto transmission. The drive away price for this automobile, before any deals that might be had at your local, is in the vicinity of $18,241.66. Over a period of four years, the average resale time for a car, the resale value drops to about forty five percent for small cars and luxury cars. Other types of car are much lower. That makes the total investment $10,032.92 after trade in or resale.

Comprehensive insurance from various companies, paid monthly, will cost the average driver another $3,301.44 (cheaper if paid annually), totalling $13,334.36. A rental for the same period as $25 a day would set you back $36,525, making purchase the clear winner financially before you account for repairs and registration, unless of course you don’t drive every day. Driving fewer than three days a week would make renting the cheaper option.


Do you have a garage? On street parking? When it comes to parking, the ride that brings you freedom can suddenly become a tiresome shackle. It becomes impractical to consider moving to certain locations, certain types of houses, if they don’t have sufficient parking. That’s something a non car owner doesn’t have to consider. As an added bonus, a non car owner with a garage or space can rent it out, subsidising their rental or public travel.

On the other hand, if parking time is limited in your area, the council can issue you with a parking permit for your vehicle, letting you park for as long as you need, but they’re non transferable. If you ever need to park a rental there, you may get into real strife. This decision really depends on location and personal needs but definitely begs consideration.


You car drops massively in value the second you drive it off the lot and newer shinier cars are always rolling out behind it. When it comes time to trade up, flogging off your old jalopy before snapping up a new one can be a real hassle. Selling for the right price, damager repairs depreciation,  and mileage are just some of the headaches with which you’ll have to contend. How much easier would it be to choose your car fresh every time you need one? A van today, sir? Roadster, madame?

There’s something to be said for not being tied down.

Your Own Space

The one thing your own car can give you is that little space of your own away from the rest of the world; your books on the back seat, your loose change in the door for tolls. It feels familiar. It smells familiar. It picks up little memories over time of the places and people and roads of your life, no one else’s. So, if you want that freedom and that space you know is yours, that’s probably the best reason to get one, but if you feel those sentimental concerns are more attached to you than your metal friend, then it’s time to do your sums and really consider if it’s what you need or just what you want.

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