Goal: Paying Cash for My Next Car

Beginning this month, I am saving up to hopefully pay cash for my next car.  I have a 2004 Chevy Cavalier that recently rolled over 150K miles. I've driven this baby since my second year of grad school and it has been good to me.  However, I KNOW that cars don't last forever and that I need to be preparing for the next one. 

People sometimes ask me when I'm going to get a "doctor" car.  My answer is always NEVAH!!!  People, I'm a psychologist, not a physician.  While I make a great salary, it's not "physician money" nor do I want to spend a lot on cars ever.  I'm just not that interested in cars and know firsthand how they can be totaled in seconds.  To me, they are a practical necessity. 

I work in healthcare and park amongst physicians.  BMW, Lexus, Cadillac...and my little Chevy.  I'm pretty sure that safety and security checks my parking permit on the regular to see if I really belong in that lot.  Tee hee!! This makes me chuckle.  To be honest I feel a little smug about the whole situation- who says you have to inflate your lifestyle to fit in?  I refuse.

                                                      Hello there!

At this moment, I'm leaning toward a pre-owned Honda Fit.  Who knows what will happen in a year.  My goal is to save about $14,000 over the next twelve months which will be possible as long as I bank all of my side income, stick to my budget*, and save a portion of my primary salary.  It's do-able but will be a challenge.  If I spend less than $14K- great!!  I know for sure that I will not be spending any more.  I just feel that that is a ton of money for a depreciating asset.

I was able to move some money around yesterday, so as of today I have $1000 and a bit of change in my car fund.  I should have another $400-600 to add to that at the end of the month.  I'll keep you updated on the progress I make each month as well as any financial set backs that occur.  This will be the first time I will buy a car in cash.  Wish me luck!! 

*Which means buying fewer clothes.  Sticking to my budget always means buying fewer clothes.  And books.  I know where my problem areas are.  Ahem.


Unknown said…
A similar option is a Pontiac Vibe or a Toyota Matrix (they're the exact same car inside different body shells, but Pontiacs are usually priced cheaper than Toyotas). I have a Vibe, and I love it. Good gas mileage (32-35mpg), but still roomy enough that I can haul a washing machine. The read seats fold completely flat and have durable plastic on the back and in the cargo area so you can load things like washing machines without damaging the upholstery. The passenger seat also folds down or when you need to carry LONG things like a rolled up area rug. The last year that the Pontiac Vibe was made was 2010.

-Jamie D.
Thanks for the info, Jamie!! It's important to me that I can haul a lot with the reselling that I do and whatnot. LOVE that you can haul a washing machine- that's perfect! I'll refer back to this when I start car shopping. :)

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