With downsizing taking place in many industries, it is no surprise that people are looking for ways to retire personal debt and keep within a tight budget. One way to position your finances to best advantage is to keep your current vehicle for several more years, rather than buying a new one. Here are five reasons why driving your car or truck a little longer just makes sense.
No Monthly Car Payment
The first benefit of hanging on to your vehicle a little longer is a very obvious one. Your car is paid for. No one can take it away from you, even if your lose your job. Take the several hundred dollars you would have spent on that monthly car payment, set aside a portion for regular vehicle maintenance and place the rest in an interest bearing savings account.
You Know What to Expect
There are no real surprises with your current car or truck. You’ve learned all the little quirks that have developed over the years and know how to cope with them. Contrast that with the frustration that new car owners feel when their vehicle ends up spending more time in the shop than on the road. That rattling in the glove compartment quickly pales by comparison.
It Feels Like an Old Friend
You’re comfortable with your older vehicle. It’s a normal human trait to refrain from grabbing a hamburger or enjoying a cup of coffee in a new car. After all, you might stain the upholstery. With your older car, there are no such worries. You can order a chili dog, greasy fries, and a gut-buster soda and not give a second thought to the possibility of spilling anything.
Lower Insurance Premiums
Older vehicles normally save you money each year in terms of insurance premiums, and license and tag fees. In fact, you may save enough on these three items alone to easily pay for semi-annual tune-ups and oil changes that will help keep your car in good operating order. In other words, you will pay less to operate and maintain your older vehicle over the course of each calendar year.
Pay Down Pressing Debt
Last, all the money you save by hanging on to your older car or truck can be used to eliminate some of your credit card debt, make a few extra payments on the mortgage, or pay for some improvements around the home. Less debt means less income required to keep your household going. That’s something you would be very happy about if your job disappeared and you had to depend on your savings for a few months.
While owning a new car is nice, it’s not the end of the world if you don’t buy one every three or four years. With proper care, you late model vehicle will provide good service for seven to ten years, allowing you to divert the money you would have spent to other essentials, making your financial future a lot more secure.
After 12 years in textiles and 17 years in teleconferencing, it was time to move on to a third career. Since 2007, I've happily gotten up each morning, made the five second commute to my home office, and written on just about any topic you can imagine. After writing thousands of articles for my clients, I still manage to have something to say.