The Express Lane Blog

Budgeting to Buy a New or Used Car for Your Teen Driver

New Car For Teen Driver

Now that your teenage, soon-to-be driver will be hitting the road with their newly-obtained license, you may be planning on buying a new or used car. Your top priority is to purchase a vehicle that’s both safe and reliable. But buying a new or used car for your teenage driver also presents an opportunity to teach your teenager about the costs and responsibilities associated with owning a car.

While your teenager’s well-being is crucial, you also want to make sure you’re purchasing a vehicle that’s affordable. Mapping out a budget with your teen is an effective way to determine what will work best for your finances while also teaching him or her the fiscal responsibility that comes with buying a car. Here are a few ways you can get started:

  1. Evaluate the costs.
    If you plan on getting auto financing to purchase your teen’s car and he or she is under 18, you’ll be responsible for making the payments. Evaluating your monthly expenses (i.e. mortgage or rent, utilities, student loans, cable and Internet, etc.), can help you determine how much of your income can be allocated towards the cost of a new vehicle.

  2. Develop a savings plan.
    Once you’ve evaluated the costs and determined a budget, opening a car savings account to which you and your teen can contribute weekly, bi-weekly or monthly can be a great way to get your teen engaged in the car buying process.

  3. Set expectations.
    Letting your teen driver know what they will be expected to contribute as far as car insurance, annual registration fees, car maintenance, etc. will help them develop a better understanding of what it means to be a responsible driver and car owner.


If you plan on purchasing a car for your teen driver and have bad credit or no credit, a dealer enrolled in the Credit Acceptance auto finance program can help you get approved for auto financing, regardless of your credit history. Just fill out this secure form on our website to get started on your credit approval today!