The Pros & Cons of Owning More Than One Car
Owning multiple vehicles has its advantages and disadvantages. It can be a lifelong dream for car fanatics to have several of their favorite vehicles parked in the garage. Car collectors often view car ownership as a business venture or a passion-fueled hobby. However, for families, sometimes owning a second or third vehicle is a necessity.
While it’s often beneficial and necessary, owning multiple vehicles is expensive. From taxes to insurance and from maintenance to fuel costs, annual expenses can add up quickly. What’s more, car maintenance is time-consuming. Detailing, cleaning, and general car duties take up a lot more time when you own several vehicles.
Before investing in a second car, it’s essential to consider the pros and cons. Our guide takes you through the pros and cons of owning more than one car, ensuring you make the right decision and know what you’re getting yourself into.
Pros of Owning Multiple Cars
There are some great benefits to owning multiple vehicles. Here are some of the pros to having more than one car at your disposal.
One of the greatest benefits of owning two or more vehicles is the convenience they bring. If one of your cars is in use or undergoing repairs, you can drive your other vehicle. If you share a car with a partner, you may have different schedules. An extra vehicle allows both of you to travel to different places at the same time.
If you have children with extracurricular activities, like sports, art, or music, a second car might be essential to ensure you meet these commitments. Although carpooling and public transportation are viable transport options, they are far less convenient than driving yourself.
Unless you live within walking distance of the areas you regularly visit, having a second vehicle may not just be convenient but also essential for your schedule. When your children become teenagers, having another car provides extra convenience so they can drive themselves to school, work, and run errands.
• Cargo Space
Multiple vehicles mean increased cargo space. Your carrying capacity is multiplied if you have access to two vehicles. This is particularly useful if you need to move furniture, household items, or large quantities of goods from one place to another.
If you enjoy taking road trips, having additional space is useful for comfort and practicality. Storing baggage and items for travel without compromising legroom makes for a much more enjoyable trip. All you need is an extra driver.
• It Gives You a Plan B
Car problems always seem to crop up at the most inconvenient times. Whether your car won’t start one morning before work or the engine warning light flashes while you’re on the highway, you’ll be glad to have a second car as a backup.
Although many car problems can be avoided through careful maintenance, issues often arise without warning. Such problems may take several days for you to resolve, keeping your car off the road. Your second car alleviates stress throughout this period. You should always have a Plan B in case of emergencies, and a second car provides this alternative.
• Driving Economically
Many peoples’ dream cars aren’t designed for practicality. Most sports cars and certain luxury vehicles are high-performance automobiles designed for speed, power, and aesthetics. They are not intended to be driven to perform the daily school run or commute. If you own a sports car or another type of fuel-guzzling vehicle, it’s beneficial to have a second car for more economic driving. Many modern vehicles are designed to be economically efficient. They have low carbon emissions and boast excellent gas mileage.
In terms of cost savings and the environment, miles per gallon (MPG) and carbon emission statistics are the most important factors to consider. Some other aspects warrant your attention, such as the type of fuel it uses. Diesel engines are generally regarded as being fuel-efficient. However, they don’t run well if they are infrequently used and driven predominantly over short journeys. In this case, you may face regular repair bills. While a gasoline engine may not be as fuel-efficient, it might be more suitable if you don’t drive a lot.
There are now several alternative fuel engines, and we’re seeing some of the world’s largest car manufacturers releasing electric cars that can compete with more traditionally built vehicles. Car enthusiasts develop emotional connections with their vehicles. Owning a second and more economical car allows you to enjoy your luxury vehicle without worrying about the environmental repercussions or the high fuel costs incurred from regular driving.
• Perfect for Large Families
As your family grows, so does the need for transportation. If your family consists of six or more people, you might not have adequate space to transport everyone. A second car ensures you can take trips as a family by splitting into groups, especially if you’re also toting sports or camping gear. With large families, the children may also have several commitments. Having two cars allows you and your partner to manage the responsibilities of your family better.
• Resale Value
In certain circumstances, buying a second car can be financially rewarding. While cars depreciate over time, limited edition models, vintage cars, and vehicles with a cult following can increase in value. Purchasing a second vehicle with the intention of selling it for a higher price can be a great way to invest your money.
If a second vehicle means you split the driving between both, it may reduce the amount of wear-and-tear experienced. With fewer miles, each car might maintain its value for longer. This maximizes its resale value when the time comes. However, you must continue with essential car maintenance to keep it in the best possible condition.
• For Specialized Work
Depending on your occupation, a particular type of vehicle may be beneficial. For example, a builder, construction worker, or farmer can get great use from a pick-up truck. The cab provides the perfect space to store and transport tools and materials. You can carry machinery and heavy-duty goods without damaging the interior of the vehicle. Pickups are also capable of towing other vehicles or trailers, including landscaping trailers.
Alternatively, if you drive a lot for work, it is advantageous to get a second car designed for long-distance driving. This can reduce the number of potential problems your car experiences and reduce fuel and running costs.
Cons of Owning Multiple Vehicles
Despite the many benefits of owning more than one car, you must not overlook some cons. Here are some things to look out for.
• Increased Running Costs
Owning multiple cars translates to an increase in running costs and automotive expenses. Besides the cost of purchasing the vehicle or the monthly payments, you must spend a lot more money running both cars.
You must also consider other costs such as insurance, fuel, maintenance, parking, and repairs. There is no guarantee that a new car won’t break down, so make sure you can comfortably afford the annual cost of owning a second car. Although car expenses vary, depending on the make and model, estimate that your expenses will double with a second vehicle if you plan to drive it a lot.
From the very moment you drive your new car away from the dealership, it starts to lose value. Unless your vehicle is vintage or was available for a limited time only, it is most likely depreciating every second. Unfortunately, depreciation has no let-up, and the worth of your car will continue to decline until you get rid of it.
If owning multiple vehicles isn’t a necessity for you, it is an asset that will inevitably lose you money. You may be better off investing in something that has the potential to grow in value. As a general rule, large and luxury vehicles depreciate faster. This is mainly because of their running costs and the expenses involved in repairs and replacements.
• Storage Space
Not everyone has enough space around their home to store one car, never mind multiple vehicles. Finding suitable places to park your cars might be difficult. If you have to park on the street or another spot out of the way, it makes it impossible for you to monitor all your cars, making them more vulnerable to theft or damage.
Some apartment buildings have dedicated car parking lots with one parking space allocated per resident. While there may be other spaces available, they are often very expensive to rent annually. This must be factored into your budget when deciding on purchasing a new vehicle. If you’re forced to store your cars away from your home, ensure that you take appropriate security measures, such as installing an alarm and a Lo-Jack.
Tips for Managing Multiple Vehicles
If you are the proud owner of more than one car, there are a few key measures to make car management easier and ensure you keep your vehicles in top condition. Here are some of our tips for managing multiple vehicles at one time.
• Vehicle Protection
Vehicle protection is paramount, particularly when you own more than one. Investing in quality car covers can keep them safe and protected while they aren’t in use. Providing an extra layer of defense, a car cover can prevent dents, dings, and scratches from loose debris or passers-by.
Car covers are also highly effective in preventing damage from natural elements. Harsh weather conditions, intense sun exposure, and salt-filled air can cause significant damage to a vehicle’s exterior over time. Salt is very corrosive, especially if it gets into the engine. Keep your cars in sheltered areas where possible, and always remember to use the car cover when it’s parked. Installation takes a matter of minutes and could save you money on costly repairs.
• Monitor the Condition of Your Cars
Perform routine checks on the condition of the vehicles to make sure you identify early signs of damage or wear. Check all essential fluid levels, such as motor oil, radiator fluid, transmission fluid, power steering fluid, and brake fluid. Test the pressure of each tire. Most cars have a recommended psi of between 32 and 35, but you should check the owner’s manual to confirm each vehicle’s exact recommendations. If possible, drive each of the vehicles regularly.
• Drive Economically
Driving economically reduces carbon emissions and fuel costs and preserves the condition of your engine. Focus on driving smoothly rather than quickly or slowly. Ease up on the accelerator, shift gears intelligently—if your vehicle has a manual transmission,and avoid harsh braking. Not all engines work identically, particularly when it comes to driving efficiently. Take note of your car’s most efficient RPM and stay close to that level when driving.
• Keep a Log of All Repair and Maintenance Work
Repair and maintenance work is hard to keep track of for one vehicle, never mind several. Keep a log of all work carried out on each of your vehicles, even routine maintenance and servicing. Gather receipts and note the cost and date of each. It is also beneficial to track the mileage you’ve clocked between trips to the mechanic.
If you lead a busy lifestyle as a multiple vehicle owner, you might forget that one of your cars is overdue for service. Keeping a log helps you keep track of repair work, giving you the best chance to maintain your vehicles’ condition. Having a full service and repair work history can also increase the value of your vehicle to buyers.
Weighing Your Decision
Although there are several benefits to owning more than one car, it is an unnecessary luxury in many cases. Many considerations must be taken in the decision-making process, but finances play the most significant role in most scenarios.
No matter how many vehicles you own, care and maintenance are extremely important. Drivers must prioritize vehicle safety and dedicate time to look after all vehicles. Car covers are essential for protecting your investment.
Browse our selection of quality car covers. All our covers come with a warranty. Shop online or give us a call at (800) 385-3603 to get a quote for your custom car cover.