Although the Canadian population may be aging, Canadian senior seniors are aging vibrantly, gracefully and independently.
As an example, Jim Matthews cites, “Recently, my 86-year-old mother had to give up her driver’s license due to some minor medical issues.” Matthews, the President of LeaseBusters, notes, “She decided not to try to write the test to get it reinstated; it was a personal decision but I believe she was getting tired of the new stresses of driving on the streets of suburban Toronto.”
What happened to Jim’s mother is becoming increasingly commonplace amongst our senior community that are still healthy and active enough to drive their vehicles. One day his mother was fine, the next day she was without a driver’s license and being subjected to an unexpected test.
The reality of her situation and the situation of other seniors is that they should continue to drive and enjoy their lives to the fullest – however, be prepared for the day when they have to “hang up” up their car keys and look to taxi services, Uber and family to help them with their transportation needs.
Which brings us to the most important component of seniors driving automobiles; the actual vehicles they are driving. Seniors should be driving newer, reliable, safe and technologically savvy vehicles in order to keep them, their passengers and other drivers on the road confident. Features such as blind-spot warning lights, lane departure warning monitors, autonomous braking to avoid crashes, rear camera are just a few features that make our drivers and our roads safer. Unfortunately, many of these options are available on newer cars that are often expensive to buy but reasonably priced to lease. Making this type of choice is something that we discuss on Dave’s Corner Garage.
Additionally, most seniors are on fixed incomes that are predicated on interest or dividend income resulting from shrewd investment opportunities. Seniors shouldn’t be depleting the capital inside of these investments to purchase a new car; they should be using the investment income to pay for the lease’s monthly payment.
And finally, as was discussed from the onset, a senior’s life can change in an instant and they could find themselves in a position where they cannot drive their newer reliable vehicle. If they owned the vehicle and were forced to sell it; they could lose between 25% and 40% of what they paid for the vehicle. If they were leasing the vehicle; there are services available that will find a new buyer to take over the balance of the lease and only obligating the senior to pay some administrative fees to exit their obligation.
In the end, leasing new cars for seniors (rather than purchasing them) is a very positive step in safer roads and preserving the needed capital for seniors to be self-sustaining members of our society. For many seniors or people who have aging parents; when the discussion of reliable vehicles come up, this topic should be on the agenda.