Car Buying Advice - Getting married, SUV or Sedan

pezhed1pezhed1 Member Posts: 7
edited April 2017 in General
I'm getting married in a few months and we anticipate a family in the near future. I have a very short commute to work. I was thinking an SUV would be nice for road trips, moving wedding gifts around, running errands, and of course, the extra room will be handy for kids. Having said that, I'm wondering if it's overkill to get an SUV now when realistically children wont be in the picture for at least 12 months and I have such a short commute. Any thoughts?


  • tireguytireguy Member Posts: 200
    I bought a brand new 2000 Jetta the day after graduation, and a few months later we bought a nice second-hand Wrangler.  We also bought an 8' trailer to haul furniture and stuff as we established a household.  That was fun for a few years.  We waited until our married life and income were stable and established before having kids, though we always knew we wanted a big family.  A few months after our third anniversary, expecting our first, we started looking at crossovers but decided there was no point in buying something we'll eventually outgrow.  So I went out and bought the biggest, baddest SUV on the lot (GMC Yukon XL).  Thirteen years later, it's still hauling our family of six and all our suitcases up and down I-95, on the beach in NC and through any amount of snow in PA.  Everyone thought we were nuts for dropping that kind of money on a vehicle in our mid 20s, but I've watched our friends and relatives go through two or even three upgrades over the same period, spending much more to drive lesser cars because they either couldn't plan ahead or couldn't stomach the higher up-front payments--which were substantial, but I haven't made one since 2009!
  • NathanCrumbackNathanCrumback Administrator Posts: 508
    @pezhed1, Congratulations on your engagement and up coming wedding!

    There's a lot of maturity in your question and I wish it was asked more often. Most young families tend to forget to plan for what life will be like down the road. You might be at the age where you are both establishing new careers and the incoming money seems to increase year after year. I think it comes down to what your overall goal is. There are other factors other than just the car (plans buying a house, paying off debt, moving, jobs, hobbies, financial goals, etc.).

    I think it would be wise to sit down and set a budget. Since budgeting is something that most people should practice, I would sit down and see what your budget is now and possibly in the future (if one of you stay at home with the kids or other similar income changes, etc.). From there, you can decide what car might fit your budget instead of what find a budget to fit the car. Also, is your fiance bringing a car into the equation? Could this car be something that stays with the family then you update the other car when you're ready?

    As for actual choosing a car type, there are pros and cons to each. I guess I don't have answer right off the bat because it comes down to your budget and "must haves". Like if you need All Wheel Drive (AWD) because you live in a climate that may call for it, that might lean my answer more towards an SUV (more options).

    I would even throw out the option of looking at a Hatchback. It's a little bit of both worlds and might not be as expensive as an SUV.

    Edmunds Moderator
  • thebeanthebean Parts UnknownMember Posts: 1,190
    Right now, you can get great deals on sedans since a lot of people are buying SUV's.  Plus, the pricing on sedans is more attractive.  But, if you're going to trade it in a few years, the resale for sedans will probably be pretty depressed.  
    2015 Honda Accord EX, 2019 Honda HR-V EX
  • pezhed1pezhed1 Member Posts: 7
    Thanks for the advice! I'm a bit on the "older" end for most newlyweds so budget wise we'll be fine as I'm pretty secure financially. My thoughts were to lease a vehicle. Even thought I know in the long run it's not the best financial option it does provide more flexibility down the road if things change. I guess I'm just having an existential crisis of getting an SUV vs sedan :)
  • texasestexases Member Posts: 10,251
    I don't think leasing provides more flexibility. You'd have to get out of the lease before it's up, not the easiest thing to do.

    And an SUV can be anything from an HR-V to a Suburban, so you have a wide range of choices. I like the flexibility with a compact SUV like a Forester or CX-5. Decent mpgs along with good room for 4 people or 2 people and lots of stuff.
  • mlevinemlevine Member Posts: 552
    SUV is the way to go. When your wife needs stuff from the store, if you need to get baby furniture or baby things, when you need to load stuff for the baby to travel, and when visiting need to take one vehicle when you go out, SUV is the answer. My first was pathfinder 4 wheel drive. Always have had one since 1st baby.
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