Author Topic: 2nd Car for Family, what type?  (Read 1580 times)

Kiwi Mustache

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2nd Car for Family, what type?
« on: April 18, 2016, 10:48:50 PM »
My partner and I are 27 and 29. We hope to have children over the next few years. Two would be ideal.

My partner has a 2012 Toyota Corolla Hatchback that she bought a few months ago so that would hope to go for another decade at least.

My car is on it's last legs and therefore I'll be looking to replace it within the next year. I'm wondering whether having two compact hatchback cars is the right way to go or should we have a station wagon as the 2nd car for extra room?

Ideally I'd like to get a Honda Fit hatchback or Toyota Yaris as they are fuel efficient and popular so repairs and spare parts can be sourced cheaply.

Would a family of four be fine with two compact hatchback cars? I like to buy a car and run it for years until it dies but I want to make the right decision now before a family comes along.

I'd use my car for driving to work 2-3 times a week (I cycle when the sun is out) and the odd out of town trip to go hiking or family holidays once a month or so. Then the odd trip across town in the weekend to visit friends.

alsoknownasDean

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Re: 2nd Car for Family, what type?
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2016, 02:53:12 AM »
If it's not driven much and a wagon is cheap (how much are old Commodores and the like in NZ?), then it's not a bad idea to get a wagon or even a van.

The other option is to buy a hatchback now and sell it and buy something else once the need arises.

How many k's would you do per year?

MayDay

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Re: 2nd Car for Family, what type?
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2016, 06:12:18 AM »
We started with 2 civics and two children. This worked fine except for longer car trips (think 12 hours) and camping. But if plan on just short road trips and no camping, you should be OK.

You'll find that the concept of a hatchback with fold down rear seats for storing large things like bikes is not so awesome with kids. Once you get those #&-%$ car seats in, you won't want to take them out to stash your bike except under dire conditions, lol.

The only other question might be if you plan to bike with the kids - can a burley fit in the trunk? It could in my civic.

Around ages 4 and 6 is when the two small cars started making us crazy. I'd consider leaning towards a bit older car, if you find with kids you want a bit more space (after all, kids grow legs and turn into teenagers) your car will be closer to replacement time. But it just depends on your driving habits.

NoStacheOhio

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Re: 2nd Car for Family, what type?
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2016, 07:40:10 AM »
We started with 2 civics and two children. This worked fine except for longer car trips (think 12 hours) and camping. But if plan on just short road trips and no camping, you should be OK.

You'll find that the concept of a hatchback with fold down rear seats for storing large things like bikes is not so awesome with kids. Once you get those #&-%$ car seats in, you won't want to take them out to stash your bike except under dire conditions, lol.

Seat choice is super important with this. I have to put a bunch of work stuff in my car semi-regularly, and I actually prefer taking my Mazda3 instead of swapping for my wife's CR-V because my seat (Graco MySize) is a bout 100x easier to install/remove than her's (Recaro PerformanceRide). Both a great seats, but the Recaro is a tank, and a total pain to tighten down. Loading three Pelican cases and a cart into a compact hatchback requires a little bit more creativity, but it's still easier than dealing with the Recaro.

Also, don't bother with LATCH, it's stupid and the weight limits are including the seat, so they're way lower than just using the belt properly.

There's a FB group, I think it's called Car Seats for the Littles, where someone or other has basically tried any conceivable car/seat combination and you can get a sense of how it works before buying anything.

With regard to car choices, I would say just buy something that meets your current needs. If you're buying 4-10 years old in good condition, you won't be taking much of a hit on depreciation if you decide you need something different a couple years from now.

And because this is MMM, have you thought about whether you really, really need two cars? Maybe as a test, try just parking your car for a week or two and only using one car.

gooki

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Re: 2nd Car for Family, what type?
« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2016, 12:18:47 AM »
As above. Buy what suits your needs now and then sell/buy if/when you run out of space. A tow bar and roof racks can extend the storage space of any car significantly.

FWIW my kids are 3 and 5 and we've just purchased our first second car. Mazda 6 station wagon.