Many Factors Add to Cost of Ownership Featured
02 January 2018
The cost of car ownership goes beyond the payment for he vehicle itself. It includes everything from filling the tank regularly to the possibility of having the car stolen. A recent report by the National Council for Home Safety and Security found these costs can vary greatly by region. On average, southerners pay less at the pump than those up north. The south generally boasts lower gas prices for a few reasons. First off, southern states have a greater concentration of oil refineries (especially Texas), which reduces the cost of transporting fuel over great distances. Also, states in the Southeastern United States have lower per-capita incomes than the richer northern states. Lower gas prices in Alabama and Mississippi reflect the reality that residents have less to spend on gas. Finally, taxes are a big factor. The states with the lowest gas prices all tend to tax gas at a much lower rate. While southerners pay less for gas, drivers in the northeast worry less about their vehicles being stolen. Vermont, Maine, New Hampshire and New York have the lowest vehicle theft rates. Washington State has the highest rate. Between the everyday cost of gas and the extraordinary cost of car theft, the biggest auto-related expenses are insurance and maintenance. When it comes to maintenance, states with auto plants do best, with Michigan leading the way with the lowest average repair costs. Wisconsin and Ohio are also among the five lowest. The downside for Michigan is the state’s drivers pay the most for insurance, with an the average price of annual premium at $2,394. Drivers in Maine, Ohio, Idaho and Vermont all pay less than $1,000 a year on average. The study drew on data from GasBuddy, Cars.com, Insurance.com and CarMD. Maine, Ohio, Idaho, Vermont and North Carolina have the lowest. Michigan has the highest rate.