Buying a car is a major financial commitment. So when shopping for that special ride, you should consider more than the sticker price.
The total cost of operating a new car for five years -- insurance, depreciation, maintenance, repairs, fuel, financing, taxes and licensing -- often can exceed the purchase price, says the Institute of Certified Financial Planners, a Denver trade group.
For example: You could spend $20,000 over five years to operate a $15,000 car.
Operating costs will affect how much money you have for other things, such as vacations, saving for retirement, eating out and investing. Therefore, it's important to consider the whole picture before you buy.