Several Converging Factors Have Caused People to Keep Their Cars Longer Than Ever

Andrew Koole
· 3 min read
If you put off
buying a new car
in 2020, you’re not alone. The COVID-19 pandemic forced many Americans to change their auto shopping plans—so much so that the average age of a car increased by two months over the course of the year.
Economic strain, adjusted work habits, and stay-at-home policies prompted people to keep their cars, park them, or scrap them altogether.
Although the trend is expected to die out as life goes back to normal, it’s one you might want to maintain going forward. Keeping your car for longer can be a great way to save on expenses, including
car insurance
Full coverage car insurance protects your vehicle as well as your wallet.

Why the average age of cars increased in 2020

The decrease in new car sales might be a predictable result of a global pandemic, but other factors affected the average age of cars that you probably didn’t expect.
The most surprising trend was the uptick in "scrappage" over the year.
IHS Markit
claims that over 15 million cars became inactive throughout the year, the largest volume in 20 years.
In most years, scrappage decreases the average age of vehicles since inactivity usually indicates that a vehicle has been recycled. But in 2020, many "scrapped," or inactive cars were merely uninsured as people parked their commuting vehicles and worked from home.
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How keeping your old car can help you save money

Automakers have made it very tempting to trade your car in for the newest model. But in the long run, doing so can get very expensive. New cars depreciate in value extremely quickly, so when you bring it in for a new one, you’re getting much less for it than you initially paid.
Trading in your car once it’s paid off also means you always need to budget for monthly payment. Holding onto it for a few years afterward saves you that expense.
The scales may tip once wear and tear starts accumulating, but as long as they’re regularly maintained, most new models can last at least 10 years before repair costs become too expensive.

Car insurance for used cars

Another reason to keep your car for longer: it’s an easy way to save on insurance. While some used cars are cheaper to insure than others, holding onto something that’s reliable and has good safety features will keep your premiums down.
It can be tough to sift through all the factors and figure out the most cost-efficient way to own a car. A lot can change based on the make and model, where you live, and the state of your driving record. But in terms of saving on car insurance, the easiest way to know you’re getting the best deal is to shop with
Jerry is a personal insurance broker that lives in your pocket. But don’t worry about buying tiny office furniture, Jerry is an app. Once you download Jerry, just answer a handful of questions that will take you roughly 45 seconds to complete and you’ll immediately get car insurance quotes for coverage similar to your current plan. Jerry customers save an average of $879 a year. Oh, and we should mention…Jerry is free.

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