You may have noticed that things have been just a bit quiet here recently. Life has been keeping us busy and after the Celica broke down this past Wednesday, we have been in car hunt mode. While the timing on the car’s demise wasn’t great, the good news is that we have enough in our savings system to cover purchasing a new car. The bad news is that this has meant that until we buy the car, we have been sharing and that has given me less time to write.
Buying a Car with Cash
Our goal is to pay for this car with cash. While not everyone wants to do that, I will say that not having car loans has been beneficial for us for several reasons.
- Smaller monthly expenses. Having a car payment is usually a big chunk on many people’s budget. We had to deal with for it ourselves when we were first married. I remember the relief once we paid it off know that we had some breathing room in our monthly cash flow.
- More freedom to allocate money. That few hundred dollars that we don’t pay for the car loan has been reallocated for other goals. Yes, some of it is being redirected towards our car replacement fund, but it’s also giving us a bit more fun money and charity money. The point is we can decide month to month what we want to do with it.
- No more pressure to go to the dealership. Now that the car is paid for and isn’t on a warranty, we don’t have to take it to the dealership to get inspected. I don’t have a problem with getting a repair done at the dealerships, but I’ve noticed that I’m strongly encourage to get more services done there that only they could handle.
We still have the goal of paying off the student loan early, so keeping away from new debts is a priority.
Hunting for a Good Car
Since we’re hunting for a car to last for long time, we’ve created a list of what we’re looking for our next vehicle.
- Make/Model – In addition to using resources like Consumer Reports, we’re also reviewing Edmunds’ True Cost to Own list to make sure that the car we get won’t cost us an arm and a leg to maintain.
- Price – Looking to buy this car in cash, we have a budget that we’ll work to stick with.
- Transmission – We were fine with either a manual or an automatic.
- Clean Title – It’s easier for us to just focus on clean titles. I know some who are more mechanically talented can find some gems with those without one.
- Gas Mileage- With my husband’s commute, getting good gas mileage is important and our minimum is 30 mpg.
When you were shopping for your car, what were deal breakers for you? What were options that you wanted to have?
Car Hunting Soon?
I’d love to hear from you about getting a car. Are you planning on a buying a car this year? How many of you are buying from a private seller?
Photo Credit: RJL20