Why won't my parents let me buy a car?

I have worked extremely hard this summer with 50-60 hour weeks, in hope I'd have enough to buy a car I really wanted by the end of summer. Well, I've made over $6k and the car I currently drive is worth $5k (title isn’t in my name though). So in theory I have about $10k to spend (with a grand being left for taxes, DMV fees, and insurance). The car I'm looking at is an LS1 Camaro or Trans Am, which are anywhere from $6k-$8k in good condition. Well, I'm still going to be working during the semester to afford gas and bills, so it won't even be a problem. However, my parents won't let me buy one. They tell me I need to save my money for when I graduate so I can pay off student loan debt. Well, the problem with that is:

(1.) That is an incredibly soul draining way to live life. Wait until like 25 to start having fun in life? Just working and sitting on all your money and only spending it on bare essentials? That's a great way to breed depression and make women hate you since you’re focused on yourself rather than them.

(2.) I'm a freaking mechanical/energy engineering major. Student loans are trivial to me, I could pay them off completely within two years of working and still have enough for rent and such. My dad is an engineer so he should know this too. Energy engineers have an average starting salary of $70k-$90k, and considering I'll be doing energy internships and preferably co-ops during college, it will be easy to get that salary after I graduate. Co-ops and internships pay well (around $20 to $40 an hour) and get you experience that will hire you after college. It also helps this country is about to hit an energy boom and my city is a core player in that. Why not use the money I make form co-ops/internships in the next couple of summers to pay off student loans? I’ll be making way more from that than my current jobs too.

(continued in updates)

(3.) I have nothing else other than food to spend money on. Housing is provided by loans at the school, and so is a lot of my food. Granted it's a rip off but whatever. My parents are already using my college fund to cover like half of the cost anyways (which isn't much since it's an in-state public university). My parents pay for a lot of my things, including my current car. Shouldn't they be HAPPY I'm taking away one less expenditure from them and footing the bill on my own?
They know my ONLY interest in life is cars, why are they denying me happiness? Thinking about cars relaxes me and motivates me. Other people my age spend their money on drugs and salmon colored polo shirts. What is so bad about me buying something functional that I also enjoy? I take my education seriously and had a 3.8 GPA freshman year when half the people switched majors, dropped out, or are having to retake.


Most Helpful Guy

  • :O OH NO!!! they won't let you buy the camaro?

    • They're haters of FREEDOM. My brother is all for it (obviously). Yeah, they're trying the whole, "we were nice enough to buy you this boring econobox and you have the audacity to try and make a SLIGHT upgrade for something YOU want?"

    • Show All
    • Don't worry I'll figure something out. I'll probably wait until I'm 20 next March though since I would have no time to drive a car anyways with school starting up next week. Was considering a GTO and C5 Corvette too but I think I'll stick with the Trans Am and just buy a really nice modified one at $10k-ish. Or maybe one day get a Cobra! Who knows.

    • either of those are good! i would say go with the vette if you have the $.

      I like the trans am though, even if you get that, it's a nice car

Have an opinion?

What Girls Said 4

  • You are an adult. Buy a car and start living life on your terms. Don't buy more than you can afford and try to pay as much in cash as possible. If I were you I would try to find a simple decent car but maybe you wanna treat yourself

  • Because you are not letting me choose it XD

  • Did you tell your parents all of that?

  • I guess they don't trust you with such a big responsibility

    • It's not a big responsibility. They trust me enough to drink alcohol and I'm not even 21. I have had a clean driving record since 15 with no incidents or tickets.

What Guys Said 2

  • Eh... I don't know about that.
    How much is your total asset worth?
    Cos if you're spending like...50, 70% on a CAR when you already have one... that really isn't a sound financial decision.

    Remember the 1/10th rule.
    Spend no more than 1/10th of your total asset on the purchase of a car.

    You already have a car.
    It's a luxury.

    Hell, I can walk out to a dealership right now... AT THIS MOMENT and drop down hard cash for a BRZ.
    But is it necessary tho?
    Not really... there are many things that are NICE to have but NICE to have is a bit different from NEED.

    Remember how in the olden days , the average saving ratio of the older generation is up to 20%?
    These days , the new gen is working on negative saving , rarely 3-5% wealth growth per year.
    Maybe it's a more financially wise decision to save up the money instead of betting on the future that changes as swiftly as the wind.

    I get temptations too , that's why I lock them down in mutual funds and GICs so I can't access the money. Maybe give that a go?
    Just my two cents.

    • You're kinda right, but the car I have now is a Corolla, which is not a luxury but a torture. Also, if I sell that Corolla for $5k (it's actually worth slightly more than that) and buy a $7k Camaro, that's only a net loss of around $3k when you include fees. Not bad at all since their is still money for other things. I'll worry about getting an IRA and saving more when I'm 21 and it makes sense to save.

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    • And yes, I'm well aware I'll have less to spend on other things, but like I said before, cars are like my ONLY hobby. I don't play video games and at most I spend like $20 on a concert ticket every other month or more. The rest is for food and necessities.

    • Loans and leases for a car... those are desperate measures.
      Living on bread and water for the next couple of years... that's... the price to pay?
      I mean... back where I come from 10-20% downpayment is the norm when it comes to mortgages. No one want to be living month to month owing money to the bank.

      There's a thing called living within the means.

      As for building credits.
      It is important to distinguish good debt from bad debt.
      Student loans , mortgage , startup loan , a car that is necessary for you to get to work and earn a living.
      Those build credit while still being a sensible necessary expense.

      Expensive holidays , a car that you don't NEED , borrowing money to pay bills.
      Bad debt with no financial return potential.

      Also "credit building" , that's the sales pitch banks go with to get you into borrowing money lol
      if you REALLY want to build your credit score , look into Equifax. Borrowing money is not how you build credit lol

  • Coz they afraid you'd hit it...