Saturday, February 21, 2009

Selling the car and living without it.

This post was also made on the CalendarBudget forums (CalendarBudget is an online google-like calendar that lets you enter all your expenses and incomes into a nice graphical interface that will visually help you plan for your budget and future! Don't forget to enter that you were refered by please!)

If, like me, you have a car that you are not using to go to work (I take the Train and subway in the morning) but rather only take it for groceries and family visits and such, then I might have an idea for you.

My car is a Ford Focus 2002, and because I had a bad credit when I rented it (16.25% interest on 4 years!) and I'm a "new" driver, my total costs just for the car and insurance is $330.00. Add to that the gas (around $80 a month) and various/varying maintenance costs, I guesstimate my total monthly cost of this car is just about $500.

That is, obviously, a lot of money to be throwing away on something I only use on the weekends, and I've been looking to sell the car at a price just high enough to cover the rest of the car loan and be done with it. But what would we now use for groceries and trips?

Quite simply, rental services like Budget and Enterprise offer vehicles that can cost around $50 for a 24-hour period with unlimited mileage. Enough for larger groceries, shopping, visiting parents, etc. Even with the cost of filling up the gas tank, a lot of money is to be saved. On alternate weekends, either smaller groceries or having things delivered (at what, $5?) makes this a very good way of saving money.

If you live in an area that does offer "proper" public transit systems that can take you to work in less than an hour (train is even better, just sit down, read a book or watch a movie on a DVD player or laptop... that's the life!) then this is definitely something to consider to be cutting costs!

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