New Teen Driver At Home? Six Tips For Teaching Them Responsibility On The Road

A driver’s license is a major rite of passage for a teenager. It is also a source of anxiety for parents. The following tips are designed to help your teen become a responsible driver and soothe your frayed nerves

Lead by Example

Your children learn life skills by modeling your behavior. This includes safe driving habits. Make sure you practice good behavior by buckling up, avoid using your cell phone, and staying focused and calm.

Encourage Financial Responsibility

Your teen is more likely to act responsibly if they have a financial stake in vehicle ownership. Encourage your new driver to contribute their own funds toward the purchase and maintenance of their vehicle. You can find used cars at an affordable price at places like the Autobank of Kansas City. Used cars have a much more reachable price tag for teens, and it can help them feel more responsible when they are helping to pay. You can also have them help pay for things like insurance, so they understand that driving is a privilege. 

Encourage Communication

It is a fact of life that young people will make mistakes. Make sure your teen knows they can count on you if they get into a situation they cannot handle. You can even establish a code word that signals that they need help if they are unable to speak freely. You can turn the situation into a teachable moment later when you can both discuss the issue calmly.

Set Boundaries

It is best to set realistic restrictions on your teen’s driving privileges during the first few months. For example, you can limit driving to daytime hours or require that they have an adult driver with them until you are comfortable with their skills. You should discuss these limitations with your teen ahead of time to avoid arguments later.

Create a Contract

Many parents have their young driver sign a contract before hitting the road. The contract should detail the rules that your teen is expected to follow regarding car use, maintenance, and safety. The contract should clearly state how you will monitor behavior, as well as the consequences for breaking the rules. You can even include a set of graduated privileges if your teen honors the agreement.

Discuss Road Hazards

Most parents discuss the dangers of drinking and driving with their kids. That is certainly important but does not cover many of the hazards faced by today’s teen drivers. Distractions from cell phones, tablets, and smartwatches cause thousands of accidents each year. Parents should discuss these issues with teens often. You may even want to disable vehicle features that make it easy to use electronic devices while driving.

Finally, it never hurts to enroll your teen in a professional driver’s education course. This may even earn you a discount on your insurance. You can instill good driving habits in your kids at a young age.

Carsurfer Admin

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