I almost fell over last week when my husband uttered these words: “I think we should go to one car for a year.” <cue my jaw dropping to the ground>
I knew he was committed to paying off debt, like me, and that he was willing to try going to one car, but a year?! That was way more than I hoped for.
We have a great relationship, but let’s just say we’re BOTH pretty good at spending money, and justifying it to ourselves and each other. Unfortunately two spenders does not make a marriage richer.
Learn more: 3 Tips To Manage Marriage & Money
He knows what he wants to replace our dead car. He knows what it will take to make that happen, and make sure that we aren’t killing ourselves just to make a car payment.
The first step is to sell the old car.
Fortunately our mechanic offered to buy it, we’re planning on working that deal out in the next week or two. We could sell it via Craig’sList or the like, but to be honest I don’t feel comfortable selling it to just anyone. It’s not safe in the condition it is in (the axle needs to be replaced, if it isn’t – the wheel will literally fall off while someone drives it), and we know he’s going to put the work into it needs. Yes, he’ll get a profit, but not an obscene one. The labor charges are why we won’t have it fixed, but he can do it for about $700-1,000+ in parts and get about $1,000 for his investment.
That money will immediately go into a new ING Savings Account, called Hubby’s New Car. We’ll also be adding a minimum of $200/month to that account. Automatically saved, of course.
Learn more: Successful Saving Strategies
Next, we’ll focus on paying off my car which has a huge monthly payment thanks in part to a series of expensive, stupid mistakes we made years ago. Buying the car that died, and then having 2 more babies, and then leasing a van, and THEN buying a van. (you can blame this all on me since I’m the one with the womb)
In about a year we should have a paid for car, a sizeable downpayment, and better credit scores which will make buying a car and taking on a payment much easier to swallow.
Ideally we would be able to stick with one car, or fully pay for the car in cash, but we have other goals that need to be met at the same time so we’re taking a multiprong approach.
The hubby found out last week that Honda may be releasing a Honda Fit Hybrid in Fall 2010. So that’s our goal, and I think having something tangible to help us save, and pay off debt will be really, really good for us.
This month is an easy month for us, we’re on vacation this week, and have no obligations during hubby’s work hours until school starts August 31st. That’s when the real fun will start.
Here’s an update about how our one car experiment worked.
Changes we’re making due to a one car life:
- “investing” in exercise wear: since I’ll be walking at least 4 miles a day come September I need to “invest” in some clothes to wear for walking. My new gear is all mommy-workout friendly. Yoga pants, breathable materials, and a new pair of shoes are also on my list.
- tuning up the stroller: I’ll be using it daily, so we’ll spend some time tuning up my AWESOME Mountain Buggy Urban Double Stroller.*
- creating a car schedule: So hubby doesn’t stress if we need the car, I’ll stick to 2 days a week where I take him into to work and pick him up.
- pre-planning errands: I’ll plan errands for times when I’m without the kids, or with less of them, and all our errands will get done in one or two trips.
Are you carless, or a sharing a car? Anything you think I’ve missed in terms of planning for a one car lifestyle?
*This is an Amazon affliate link, but I did not pay that much for a stroller. I paid about half that price. 🙂