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A New Car!

November 1st, 2019 at 05:01 am

I bought my car yesterday -- quite unexpectedly! I was going to wait until Saturday when my son could drive me to several places in distant suburbs. But when I looked at local websites rather than the big Autotrader-type things, I found new options.

I bought a 2014 Kia Soul with only 29K miles. It is in beautiful, perfect condition. I paid cash (which included putting $2700 on a credit card) and the total was $12,705. I'll get some of that back because I'll be reimbursed for taxes and fees.

It was a little over my spending limit, but I am so pleased. I did look extensively at Toyotas and Hondas, understanding totally that their reliability is legendary, but the only options for me would have been cars that were older than the one I lost (which was pretty old already!) or cars that had very high mileage.

The Kia Soul has good ratings for reliability as well, and I am trusting that this will be a good car. I love the way it looks and the way it handles, the roominess of the interior and the nice, high seat! I didn't realize how much I hated getting in and out of the low-slung Civic. A friend of mine just told me that he LOVED his Soul and that it handled great in snowy conditions.

The fly in the ointment is going to be quickly paying off what I put on the card. I'm going to have to really be frugal in order to pay it off in a couple of months to ameliorate the interest. Unfortunately, this is the worst time of the year for that, as Christmas is coming, as well as two birthdays this month.

Today I'm going to go get my wheel tax paid, as well as go to the gym and pick up a few groceries. I'm due for a haircut, but I think that may have to wait until tomorrow. But I'm so excited to get in my new car!

20 Responses to “A New Car!”

  1. Wink Says:

    Congratulations on your new car!

  2. creditcardfree Says:

    Congratulations! I hope it is a great car for you. Will love following your frugalness to pay off the credit card! We put some on a credit card for our daughter, then paid it off with savings before interest struck. We are paying ourselves back to savings for that now.

  3. Dido Says:

    Congrats on the new car, and I hope it's everything you are expecting!

    If the credit card debt is high at a bad time of year, you might look at a 0% balance transfer offer. You can find those typically for a 4%, sometimes 3%, rarely (but occasionally) a 2% fee. If you find one for 3%, that's just $81 paid upfront, and that might make things easier as you get into the spendy time of year. That's what I do whenever I have a big unexpected expense, like my Buffy's veterinary hospitalization back in June. Being able to pay the fee, essentially a low interest payment, and then spread the payment on the principal over time, really helps.

  4. Lots of Ideas Says:

    I agree with Dido. It is really worth looking for a zero percent balance transfer card - maybe even one with a bonus for signing up!

    Nerdwallet has some offers...

  5. Petunia 100 Says:

    Chase Slate has a 0% for 15 month offer, with no balance transfer fee.

    Text is https://creditcards.chase.com/a1/freedom-slate/compare?Cell=63RD&jp_cmp=cc/Slate_Brand_BMM_Slate_SEM_US_NA_Standard_NA/sea/p25773535971/Chase+-+Balance+Transfer&ds_rl=1250291&gclid=EAIaIQobChMI2cSn37HJ5QIVEtvACh14wg2nEAAYASAAEgL0xvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds and Link is
    https://creditcards.chase.com/a1/freedom-slate/compare?Cell=...

  6. Petunia 100 Says:

    And congrats on your new car! What color is it?

  7. AnotherReader Says:

    People that suggest borrowing on a card with a three percent up front fee to pay off a loan in two or three months are not very good at math. Calculate the APR on a $10,000 loan with a $300 up front fee paid off in two and three months and get back to me.

    Those that focus on the zero percent loans will forever be in debt. The only people that should consider these loans are people that will require most if not all of the zero percent period to pay off the loan and will actually have the loan paid off at the end of that period. Others are just fooling themselves.

  8. AnotherReader Says:

    Having said that, the Slate offer with no balance transfer fee is a good deal if you qualify. CB is the kind of person that would use that offer wisely.

  9. Dido Says:

    AR, it's little to do with math and more to do with lifestyle. Yes, on an APR basis, the rates are high, but the point is that CB said that she would feel very pinched in the short term by trying to pay that money back to avoid interest. The longer the payback, the lower the effective APR would be. She can feel very stressed and try to pay it back in 2-3 months, or she can take advantage of a balance transfer and pay it back over time and feel less stressed. And if there's a zero percent balance transfer out there, all the better. I agree that people who are not good with credit can get themselves into trouble by overzealous use of these offers, but there's no reason why responsible people should not take advantage. Debt is not all bad. It can also function as leverage to enable one to live a better lifestyle than one could without its use, but it should be used wisely.

  10. Joanne Says:

    Enjoy your new car. You must be happy to have one again. It sounds nice.

  11. latestart Says:

    Enjoy your new vehicle.

  12. AnotherReader Says:

    "Debt is not all bad. It can also function as leverage to enable one to live a better lifestyle than one could without its use..."

    Consume now, pay for your past consumption that you could not afford later. Or maybe never pay for it and die with a lot of debt or file bankruptcy. Very bad advice, IMO.

  13. Lucky Robin Says:

    Sounds like you really lucked out on that car, CB. I hope it is as great as can be over its lifetime for you.

  14. Lots of Ideas Says:

    AR - CB is looking at @$3000. With a cash reward offer, she could easily offset the balance transfer fees do then some.

    Credit cards can be a danger to those who use them indiscriminately, buying more than they can afford.

    They can also be a tool if used wisely. I charge everything I can, paying in full each month, and I add about $50 a month to my bottom line that way. It costs me nothing, and in fact makes tracking my spending very easy. I don’t churn through cards to get bonuses but I have used that feature when I had a reason to want a new card. If I had a large unexpected expense I would consider a zero balance card as a way to finance if I didn’t have or want to deplete my savings.

  15. AnotherReader Says:

    I'm all for cash back and rewards credit cards and bonuses for opening new ones. I use them all the time and I pay them off before due. CB is a responsible person and she would look at this the same way you and I do.

    Dido is advocating spending more than you can afford and then paying it off when you can afford it. The problem is that you continue to want things you can't afford. You end up going further into debt to satisfy those wants.

    I'm disappointed that someone that is a professional financial adviser would give such poor advice. Looking at her finances as disclosed on her blog, I suspect that if you subtract out her retirement accounts, her net worth is not very high. She's juggling high credit card debt, a mortgage, and a HELOC. Another job loss would likely be very damaging to her. In my opinion, her choices and the rationalizations for making them compromise her credibility. As Dave Ramsey says, "Don't take financial advice from broke people."

  16. Dido Says:

    No, I am NOT advocating spending more than she can afford. And my net worth is north of half a million in total, and still tens of thousands in the black if you subtract out my retirement accounts. AR is twisting my words, distorting them far beyond what I said.

    What I had in mind was the analogy to a mortgage. Many fewer of us would live in homes if we had to pay for it entirely up front. Now a house is possibly, but not necessarily, an appreciating asset, while a car is a depreciating one, but I am in no means advocating for living beyond ones' means; just pointing out that it would be possible to spread the expense over a bit of time so as not to feel so crunched in the short term.

    Think about losing weight. You could try to starve yourself for a short term, or consume fewer calories over a longer term. Either way, to lose weight, calories in will need to be less than calories out. But cutting a few hundred calories a day is more sustainable than starving yourself. I believe in responsible debt use, and not living beyond one's means, but also in managing cash flow in a manner that is sustainable. Ideally one has an emergency fund that covers all of these unexpected expenses, but if one doesn't, then a zero percent loan and cutting expenses somewhat over a period of time might be more sustainable than trying to "starve" oneself financially over a short term.

  17. AnotherReader Says:

    I really admire CB for how she has managed her money over the last year. She made do with a significantly reduced income without dipping a lot into savings. She lived a full and satisfying life for the year, and dealt with unexpected expenses in a rational manner. I think most readers here would do well look to her example when they experience financial adversity.

  18. rob62521 Says:

    Glad you found a car you like. I'm sure you will figure out a way to reduce expenses to pay for what you have charged. You've done a marvelous job living below your means before so I have full confidence in you.

  19. Dido Says:

    I totally agree with you here, AR. CB is definitely a model to emulate!

  20. CB in the City Says:

    You guys are too kind! I have only done what I've had to do after a lot of mistakes I wish I could redo.

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