Happy Monday everyone! To the left you can see our awesome new car. We bought a 2013 Camaro 2SS just in case any of you were interested
This past weekend was nice and fun. And that is great because work is so busy right now that I feel like I’m running around with my head chopped off. Can’t wait until the summer and this is all over hopefully. This past weekend went by too quickly, but oh well.
We got a TON of snow yesterday. On Saturday, I had the windows open and it was nice outside. Then of course we get over 15 inches of snow and it’s supposed to just keep snowing. This really stinks because we just bought the Camaro and of course it can’t drive in this. Snow in the spring time? NO!
Today, we’ll just be sharing the Jeep but that is a hassle since we don’t work at the same time nor work anywhere near each other. I am definitely not looking forward to driving to work, then back home to take W to work, then going back to work and then going home and then picking him back up 4 hours after that. AHHHH!
Also, I have a really awesome guest post about a fellow blogger and her significant other who quit their jobs around 6 months ago to travel the world. They have been all over and her guest post about it goes live on Friday. I know all of us dream about this happening one day, so why not live through her in the meantime? Be sure to come back on Friday!
Definitely a lot of spending in the past week. We bought a new car so that is expected! We are happy about one thing though, we thought it would be around $200 per month (at the minimum) for the Camaro’s car insurance, but it turns out that our insurance actually LOWERED and now we are only paying $100 per month for both of us on both the Camaro and the Jeep. That is crazy to think about. I even emailed our insurance company to make sure that was correct, and they said it was.
Everyone told us that we were crazy for getting the Camaro because our insurance should have gone through the roof. For some reason we got lucky so I’m definitely not going to complain. It is sad to see that my old car is no longer in the driveway, especially since my dad help me pick it out just one week before he passed away. Weird memory, I know, but it is still something that I think about. He LOVED Camaros though and had one for nearly half his life, so I’m sure he is super happy that we have a Camaro
I received approximately $1,713 in payments in the past week. A good week of course. I do feel like I’ve stalled with my extra income, but I am fine with that. I’d definitely rather have it be stable and having only the slightest increases than be decreasing.
Anyways, I’m still at a great level! How are you doing with your extra income? What are your goals with it? Eventually leave your job and do only extra income efforts? Pay off all of your debt? Tell me all about it! I am really interested.
We’ve been doing really good with our food budget. I still will never say how much we were spending before, because usually jaws hit the floor. Our fridge is super packed with food though and we need to start eating more of it before it all goes bad. I do have a question though, how much do you all spend on food per month? How about per person per month?
I am doing AWESOME with working out. I run at least a couple of miles a day, have been lifting and eating more healthy. It does really help to have our gym in our basement. Do you prefer to work out at a gym or at home? How much do you spend per month of being fit (whether it be gym memberships, a personal trainer, organic food, etc)?
Yes, the upfront cost of buying weights (we spent over $300 in weights alone, plus $300 for the olympic bar), a “cage” to put the olympic bar on (that was another $500 plus $50 for the seat) and around $800 for the treadmill (got it at a MAJOR discount). We paid for it all upfront with extra money so it’s not as though we even noticed it. Saving up and paying for it immediately is awesome! And now we don’t have to waste gas driving to our gym which was 20 miles round trip. AND we can spend that extra time that we would have been driving and just work out instead.
A few weeks ago I wrote a blog about being a one car household in the rural countryside. I never thought I’d recieve so many comments about how having one car to share between two working adults just isn’t feasible when there isn’t access to public transportation. I guess I didn’t make the point of that post clear enough:
Having one car to share between two working adults who must both commute to work is entirely doable. Even without public transportation.
Let me repeat that: There is absolutely no public transportation to be had in my rural community, yet my fiance and I still manage to make it work, day in and day out. Some days it’s annoying, but most days it’s not. In fact, most days I thank my lucky stars that we’ve made it work with one car, because cars are freaking expensive. Having one is bad enough, two would set me back on my debt free journey significantly.
Now, we both live way beyond walking distance to our respective workplaces, so we’ve had to resort to some pretty creative ways of getting around. Here are a few:
I live eight kilometres from work, and while I ran that distance a few times while training for my 10k road race last spring, it’s a bit far (not to mention hilly) to bike. I work in an office without a shower so showing up all sweaty from an invigorating bike ride wouldn’t be the best strategy to get ahead in my workplace. My fiance, on the other hand, only lives 1.6km from a coworker, so on the days when I don’t drop him off in the morning, he bikes up there and hitches a ride into work.
While we haven’t purchased one yet, I would absolutely love to have a scooter. Fuel efficient, affordable, and perfect for driving alone, I’ve been drooling over a scooter for awhile. Living in a rural community and being so damn far from everything, a regular bike isn’t really the best option for getting around, but a scooter? Count me in! In my last post on this topic, some of the readers mentioned not being able to convince their husbands to give up the second car, maybe floating the idea of replacing it with a motorcycle will sweeten the deal?
My fiance and I carpool almost everyday, whether it’s me driving him to work, or him taking the car and dropping me off at work before taking off to do his thing (he’s an entrepreneur so his work hours and location are more erratic), we always make sure to coordinate our schedules. Beyond that, I often carpool to work with my own colleagues (one of whom lives around the corner from my house for part of the year), and he with his. Sometimes I worry that my coworkers might get annoyed with this, so I always make sure to offer to pay my fair share of the fuel costs, and I’m always prompt and ready at the designated pick up and drop off times.
I work a typical 8-5 day, and in the summer so does my fiance. His business is seasonal, however, and in the winter he often finds extra work to keep busy. Since we only have one car, and the nearest city (read: source of jobs) is 30km away, he makes sure to only apply for positions with hours that won’t conflict with mine.
Finally, I’ve worked hard to show my employer the value of having me work from home. Having the flexibility to be able to stay home and work on my laptop allows me to forego having to arrange transportation completely for the day. I can just sit back on my couch in my pyjamas and not have to worry. Working from home has the added benefit of not having to navigate the treacherous winter road conditions that are often present in my rural community during the colder months – having two cars is expensive, but so is going off the road!
Having one car in a rural area with no public transportation isn’t an ideal situation. In fact, attempting it with two working adults and children would probably be downright impossible, but as young professionals without children, we’ve found ways to avoid the ridiculous costs that come along with owning a second vehicle. I’ve actually discovered some hidden benefits including improved communication with each other and a better relationship with neighbours and coworkers. I’m serious about getting out of debt and that means eliminating every single unnecessary expense in order to throw more money at debt. A second car is unnecessary to us, and not having one has helped me pay off almost $13,000 of debt in ten months.
Hey everyone! I want to introduce my new staff writer, Jordann. She will be helping me out and posting every Friday most likely. I love her writing so I’m glad she decided to join me on my blog. You can visit her at My Alternate Life. I’ll let her take it away now.
Growing up in a rural area, I was used to needing a car to get anywhere. With no public transit whatsoever, and the nearest city 30 kilometres away, most families had two to three vehicles (read further on the most gas guzzling cities!). One for mom, one for Dad, and an old beater for the teenaged kids to fight over. Heck, the average Dad usually had his own personal car as a hobby that he only drove on Sundays in the summer.
Cars, in my neck of the woods, weren’t an option, they were a necessity.
This was, I thought, how most people lived. That is, until I moved to a city center for University. You mean to tell me that people don’t have cars here? This was a revelation to me. To be able to not just get around comfortably, but often more easily without a car, was a novel concept to me. I lived four years in University without ever owning a car, and even though I had access to one, I didn’t use it. Transit was the way to go, or good old fashioned walking.
Then, one fateful day the summer after I’d graduated University, I totalled my then-boyfriend-now-fiance’s trusty neon. We were moving back into rural country shortly, and the demise of his vehicle meant that a car payment was soon to grace our finances. We had no choice, we were moving to a rural area, we needed a car.
Let me tell you, after 21 years of not having to deal with a car payment, insurance payments, gas and maintenance costs, having a car has been nothing but an unwelcome expense. Sure, where we live right now, we need a car, but that doesn’t mean I like owning one. I guess it’s because I’ve never owned a car, but I’m the complete opposite of desensitized to that payment. The idea of having not one but two cars to spend money on? No thank you.
Where I’m currently living, I live eight kilometres away from work. My fiance’s job requires him to travel between 30 and 50 kilometres per day to different job sites. In our surrounding area there’s nothing but residential housing and farms. No public transportation to be had for miles around.
Yet we only have one car. Sure, it can be annoying at times, but not nearly as annoying as the cost of an extra car payment, insurance, gas and maintenance. We have to be more coordinated, my fiance car pools with a nearby fellow employee, or when he needs the vehicle he drops me at work early, or picks me up late.
We can’t go separate places at the same time without coordinating first, and we get very good at planning our errands to coincide with the other’s obligations (he gets groceries while I’m at my photography class, etc).
Having a single car is completely doable, and we don’t even live anywhere with access to transit!
On the average month, not including maintenance fees (since those pop up sporadically), I spend around $440 per month of our 2007 VW golf. If we were to add a second car to our household tomorrow, we’d probably look for the same type of vehicle: used but in good condition, compact and good on gas.
So, theoretically, if we were to be a two car household, our automotive expenses would cost us around $880 per month exclusive of maintenance fees.
That’s a ton of money! An extra car would run us around $5280 per year! That’s a very good chunk of income. I can’t help but think that extra $440 could be put to better use, like saving up for a house down payment, putting towards retirement, or paying off the remaining $25,000 in debt I’m trying to get rid of.
No, for now I think I’ll deal with the minor inconvenience of being a single car household in a rural area, and put that money towards paying off debt instead. Things might change once I have kids, or maybe when I allow some lifestyle inflation creep, but for now I’m happy with my relative lack of mobility.