Car vs Salary: Tips affording a car on minimum wage

E cxSmpwfvEVda48T3GNYYFz37ko s khtaRua3eyt6miKD6bo87eIZeabIa LK8J1IhRMoRFkWlbhfA1nrcPq7AhVqBeRNhSzuv3wBo8UtLwKASOjE4veHB1dLcOkQtzbYYRe1DE69raGPpNQhIBJdQsb9Xgvt5SDnyF07MU1Lk7r 2E5LNB I

The car you drive says a lot about you and can also be an investment in your future. So if you’ve recently landed a new job or are starting on minimum wage, there may be some options for helping you afford a new car. In this guide, I will talk you through some things to consider that could help lower the cost of your next car purchase.

Choose a new car over a used one

If you’re looking to save money on a car, you should consider buying a new one instead of a used one. New cars might be more expensive in the initial outlay. However, they are more reliable than used ones and have better resale value when it comes time to sell your vehicle.

New cars have fewer miles on them, so less wear and tear has occurred during their lifespan (and therefore, less need for repairs). 

Consider monthly parking

Parking can be a significant expense if you commute to work or school. You could consider parking at home and using public transport, but this defeats the purpose of owning a car. 

If you work in an office building without parking facilities on-site, it might make more sense to look for monthly parking. For example, when I worked in Boston, street parking was extortionate, so I used a monthly garage parking in Boston while at work and saved myself hundreds of dollars each month.  

Stick to a budget

It’s time to get honest with yourself. For example, you must stick to a budget if you have a car.

The first step in creating your own personal budget is ensuring all of your expenses are accounted for each month before calculating how much money can go towards monthly repayments on a car. 

You should include the following:

  • Rent/mortgage repayments
  • Water rates and power bills
  • Mobile phone/home phone bills (if applicable)

Improve your credit score

Think about it: if you have a bad credit score, you might not be able to get the best interest rates on your loan. So make sure you avoid being hit with high-interest rates by improving your credit score.

To do this, the first thing that you need to do is ensure you make all debt payments on time every month. Then, if you have existing debts, try to reduce these costs as much as possible before applying for a loan. 

Consider a lease instead of an auto loan

Leasing may be a better option if you’re unsure how long you’ll keep your car or want to avoid being stuck with payments on an auto loan. Leasing is like renting a car: at the end of the lease term, you can return it and get another one (or buy it) or pay more to extend your lease for another few years. Leases are often cheaper than buying outright because they allow manufacturers to offer lower monthly payments; however, leases come with higher interest rates over time than loans do — so make sure that paying off early won’t cost more in total than taking out an auto loan instead.

Compare insurance prices

There are a few things to consider when you’re looking to insure a car. Although for example, the insurance cost will depend on your age and gender, where you live, and the type of car you drive. Again, using comparison websites will help you understand the best price possible for your insurance.

Factors that affect how much it will cost include:

  • Location: Where you live can impact how much your insurance will cost; proximity to major cities means more expensive premiums because drivers are more likely to be involved in accidents or other incidents that require repairs. The same goes for someone close to an area known for high crime rates or frequent traffic jams (e.g., school zones).
  • Type of vehicle: This impacts whether or not a person needs full coverage or liability-only coverage—but also consider whether they need roadside assistance plans (which can add up quickly if they rely on them frequently). Questions like these can help determine what kind of policy would best suit any given person’s needs before deciding which company might fit best within those parameters.

Buy a hatchback, not an SUV

Another way to save money is by choosing a hatchback over an SUV. This can be especially helpful for people who live in cities and have to park on the street. The smaller size of hatchbacks means they are cheaper to park, fill up with gas, and maintain than SUVs. They also have lower insurance rates because they’re less likely to get into car accidents or cause damage while driving.

You can afford a new car on minimum wage by making the right choices

You can purchase a new vehicle on minimum wage if you follow these tips:

  • Choose a new car over a used one. It’s not only safer but will also be more reliable and have fewer repairs in the long run.
  • Stick to your budget. While it may be tempting to buy something extravagant, don’t let yourself go overboard just because you can afford it. Make sure that your total monthly expenses will not exceed what you make per month by more than 10%. If they do, reconsider your options and see if there are ways for you to cut down on costs without sacrificing too much of what makes life worth living (like fun!) to save money for the goal at hand—getting behind the wheel of an excellent ride!
  • Consider monthly parking costs when looking for cars with low fuel economy, like SUVs or large sedans.


If you are struggling to afford a new car on minimum wage, remember that it is possible. You just need to make good choices, like buying the right kind of vehicle and budgeting carefully. We hope this article has given you some ideas on how to do that!