The Life of a Home Mom

3 Tips for Finding a Second Car

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Getting that Second Car

Time for a Second Vehicle

Kids are all back in school and husband is working his job during the day. What does that mean for me and my little one? Simple, we are stuck home. Last year this wasn’t an issue at all, we had a second vehicle which meant when we got bored we went and did something. Being stuck home during the end of summer heat means we are literally not leaving the house. It’s time to start looking for a second vehicle. Thankfully we’ve been down this road before and we know what to do.

finding a second vehicle

Tip 1:  Know What You Want

Think about what it is you want or need. Sure everyone wants that dream car but that isn’t always ideal for that second vehicle you are needing? For me, no matter what it must have 5 seats, 4 for the kids and one for myself. For say my husband who would just need one to get to work he could have a 2 seat pick up truck. Technically, I could get a normal family car. If I would like something a little bigger so the whole family can go I do have to get a mini van or something along those lines if I don’t want to do the drive two cars to one location.


  • What will it be used for? (hauling items, commute back and forth to work, chauffeuring children from one activity to another, grocery shopping, long road trips, camping, etc)
  • How much do you have to spend on one? (Willing to pay monthly payments? Or do you want a vehicle that you bought right off the bat?)
  • How much are you willing to put into a used vehicle to fix it up? (Oil leaks, new tires, breaks, etc)
  • How are you willing to drive to purchase a vehicle? (This will help in your search range)
  • What type of gas mileage are you looking at? (economy, van/suburban)
  • Will this be used for traveling long distances? (If you plan on traveling you might not want a car that has 100,000 miles on it)
  • What features do you want it to have?

Car Shopping Tip 2:

When you know the model you are looking for this will make the search a little bit easier. Notice I didn’t say a piece of cake. Try asking around to see if any of your friends, churches or neighbors might know of someone trying to get rid of a car. This should always be your first source because it’ll be easier to purchase and you won’t have to go hunting through all the papers/online.

Check out newspapers and websites such as to see if there are any new/used cars in your area for sale. You never know what you’ll find. My 17-year-old was looking to see what prices are in our area that she could start saving up for and found 3 cars between $1500-2000 that interest her. We were able to see they were in driving distance so if they are still available in a few months we’ll head over to check them out. She loved reading the reviews on the site because it tells about that particular car or brand depending what you are searching.

With we are able to check out the car with the pictures of the actual vehicle, there is a price comparison guide, you can check for all the recalls on that particular make/model and get a Carfax report. I love this, not all places will openly have this. Use the price comparison so you can tell if they are asking too much or just right.

If you decide to use places like Craigslist, please keep in mind that not everyone is honest. Bring someone with you to check out the car. There have been too many people reporting of getting robbed meeting up to buy/sell a car. Do it in an open area and never in the dark.

Tip 3: Take it for a Test Drive

If the current owner is NOT allowing you to test drive it you should have red flags popping up all over the place. Most dealerships allow you to test drive, even people that put ads in the paper let you drive it. If they are saying you can’t test drive it, even with them in the car something is probably wrong with it and it wouldn’t be worth the hassle.

Do you have any tips for finding a second vehicle?

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