Living without a car: The pros and cons

A woman riding a subway.

Before you buy a car, consider the benefits and drawbacks of living without one.

Benefits vs. drawbacks of owning a car

The benefits of not owning a car The drawbacks of not owning a car
Major savings
Owning a car is a major expense.You can save a lot of money if you really don’t need a car or can manage to live without one.
By not owning a car, you can avoid saving for a down payment, making monthly car loan payments, and all of the other expenses that go along with car ownership such as insurance, gas, maintenance, and repairs.
Multiple options
There are definitely cheaper ways of getting yourself from here to there. Consider taking public transportation if available in your area; getting a moped; or, riding in a carpool.
A healthy choice
If you can walk or ride your bike, you’ll save money and get some free exercise. Having one less car on the road cuts back on traffic and air pollution.
Rent when you need to
Even if you don’t own a car, you can rent a car now and then when you need one.
Reduced convenience
Without a car of your own, you may not always be able to travel exactly where, when, and how quickly you want to.
Missing the “fun”
Millions of Americans are in love with their cars. There’s no denying it: having a car of your own can be fun.

If you decide to get a car, be realistic. It’s a major expense and responsibility, so research, think it through, and take the process step by step.

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