Getting your first car is a right of passage for many Americans. Whether your parents purchased it for you or you scrounged up the money yourself, that first vehicle can represent a level of freedom. Of course, many first cars are far from well-maintained, high-end machines, and it's easy to keep one well beyond its sell-by date.
If high school is sitting comfortably in your rearview mirror, you may be outgrowing that first car. Keep an eye out for these three signs that your trusty ride's next stop should be your local scrapyard.
1. Your Commute Requirements Are Changing
First cars for many people need to meet a relatively unchallenging set of requirements. In most cases, they handle transportation to and from high school or a first job and then spend a decent amount of time sitting in a campus parking lot. In other words, you might not have been putting many miles on your vehicle.
Commute requirements can change drastically after graduating from high school or college, however. If you suddenly find yourself with an average American commute, that might mean around an hour spent in highway traffic every day. Junking your old car and using the money for something more reliable can be a safer option to make sure a breakdown doesn't make you late for that first real job.
2. You Didn't Care For It
It's no secret that most high school and college students aren't the most careful automotive caretakers. Reckless driving, poor maintenance routines, and a general lack of care can all take a toll on a car, especially one that may have already been a little old and worn-down when you got it. Everyone makes mistakes, but it's eventually time to leave those behaviors behind.
Unfortunately, while you might be much more responsible, the cost to bring a poorly maintained car back up to par can be high. If you can see the signs of poor maintenance every time you get in your car, it's probably time to consider a one-way trip to the junkyard.
3. You've Outgrown It
Tastes and requirements for vehicles change over time. You might have enjoyed driving a sporty coupe in high school, but maybe you need something respectable or a little bit bigger. If your car isn't worth much, then the hassle of trying to sell it on the open market probably isn't the most efficient way to get into something that meets your new needs.
Instead, giving your local junk buyer a call can be a quick and painless way to ditch your old car, giving you some much-needed cash for a down payment on a vehicle that fits your new adult lifestyle.
For more information on getting cash for your junk car, contact a service like Cash For Cars.