A red convertible with fancyt hubcaps may be your kid’s dream car, but a car’s safety rating is the most important feature of a vehicle for your high school or college student. Yes, it’s even more important than reliability, fuel economy or even the size of a car. If you are buying a new or used vehicle for your back-to-school teen, check the vehicle’s safety rating first. Both the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and the federal National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) conduct detailed independent crash testing for both frontal and side impact. There are several ways you can check on a car’s safety rating and maintenance record. To see this entire story, visit Living on the Cheap, our sister site.