Can I Afford a Hybrid Car?

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Hybrid cars are more affordable than ever thanks to more efficient batteries. More gas stations are putting in charging stations just for hybrids. However, there are very few used hybrid vehicles on the market, so for now consumers will have to buy new. Here’s what to check so you know if you can afford a hybrid car.

Call Insurance Company

One of the biggest car expenses is car insurance. Many car insurance companies will offer lower rates for drivers of hybrids or at least will keep the rates the same. It’s always best to talk to your car insurance agent to see if driving a hybrid will make any difference to your monthly premiums.

Calculate Gas Prices

Take a look at what you spend for gas in a year. If this figure is unknown, keep track of what you pay for gas in a month and multiply by 12. Divide this figure in half, because you may have to sometimes use gas in a hybrid. The resulting figure is a conservative estimate of how much you’ll save on gasoline that can be put towards monthly payments on a new hybrid.

Trade In Price

Don’t assume that hybrid sellers will not purchase your conventional gas car. Some will give generous offers for your old vehicle. It never hurts to ask what you can get for your old car. This may take a big chunk off of your hybrid’s price tag.

Factor In Tax Write-Offs

Americans may be able to get a refund in their federal taxes if they purchase a new hybrid. Some state and local areas also offer refunds because hybrids are better for the environment. Contact your tax preparer for current details and check out the US Department of Energy’s website about tax credits on fuel-efficient vehicles, www.fueleconomy.gov.

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