Author Topic: How to convince my husband to sell the car?  (Read 6444 times)

ScienceRules

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How to convince my husband to sell the car?
« on: April 23, 2013, 05:02:56 AM »
Hello all! This is going to be another ďget the spouse on board/am I being unreasonable?Ē post.

I posted earlier this year with our budget and questions about med school. In it I identified our car as our biggest problem. So the dirty details about the car:

Itís a 2013 Subaru Outback Limited. Itís an awesome car and my husband and I both really like it. BUT, itís ridiculously expensive and weíre graduate students. We had a 2005 Jetta until last summer when it had a problem. It ended up being the timing chain, but it took a couple weeks and about $1500 to get it fixed. Me, being the spoiled middle class person that am I, could not handle having a car that breaks down. So we bought the Outback and sold the Jetta. We sold our Jetta for more than we bought it for a couple years earlier and we got $1000+ off invoice on the new car. So those transactions both went well, but now I donít think that we need a car and Iím having a hard time even talking to my husband about it.

We owe ~$25,000 on it at 3.9%. We should be able to pay it all off this summer, since weíve been flexing our saving muscles (and obviously we should pay it off even if we keep it).

Reasons why I donít think we need it:
-We take the bus to school (we are going to try to cut down on this when I get back to the States. Now that we are no longer required to purchase bus passes, my husband is going to bike and Iím going to walk or bus until I learn how to ride a bike again)
-We live in Seattle so everything is pretty close - Greenlake is a mile away, the closest grocery store is 8 blocks away, and Costco is 6 miles away. Again, Iím not proficient on a bike, but if we rent a zipcar twice a month and take care of all our driving needs then I donít think it should be a problem.
-We generally only use the car once a week anyways. So if we plan our trips and grocery shopping better twice a month trips to Costco should be plenty.
-We spend about $700/month on the car (car payment, insurance, gas) vs., a very high estimate of, $300/month with the zipcar (allows for 4 full days per month)

Reasons my husband says we should keep it:
-He wants it
-We already bought it so we shouldnít sell it and lose $8000 on it (taxes included)
-He doesnít want to walk the <1 mile to the zipcar every time to go shopping Ė his time is too precious
-He doesnít want to ride the bus to the grocery store or to see my family
-I made the mistake of telling him to get rid of the Jetta so now I have to deal with it
-He doesnít want to spend money on the zipcar when it would just be going to waste, whereas with the car payment at least we have a car at the end

SoÖ I am being unreasonable in wanting to get rid of the car? A lot of my frustration comes from suggesting the idea to him and him spazzing out about it. I suggested that we treat our car as a zipcar for a couple months and see if itís feasible for us and all I got out of that was, ďYou can do it, but weíre still not selling the carĒ. Is it worth it to keep pushing on it? Where do you cut your losses and admit itís not worth the marital strife? In most other things, he's been great about saving. He saved much more than me until I found MMM. But there are still some issues we have. For example, I want a chest freezer and to buy half a cow so we can have alot of meat (his requirement) and it can be healthy food for us (my wish). But he sees it as me just wanting to buy things and he doesn't care at all about what he eats as long as there is plenty of meat, so it's a struggle convincing him that buying good food (even though it's a little more money) is much better and cheaper in the long run than him eating hot wings everyday (like he's doing now while I'm out of the country).

Sorry this turned into a such a ramble. Thanks for your help!

Reepekg

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Re: How to convince my husband to sell the car?
« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2013, 08:55:27 AM »
Sounds like he's pretty annoyed you pushed to get rid of the Jetta and are now changing your mind. I would be.

The inconvenience level of having no car is increased compared with just getting the Jetta fixed up. I don't think you have much of a leg to stand on in this argument, and may have to live with the mistake. I wouldn't want to pay $8k for less convenience.

Since it is a 2013, I think the best way to come out of it financially might be to get use out of it for a couple years and then reconsider selling it to minimize loss. It won't depreciate as drastically now that the initial few months of new -> used are over.
« Last Edit: April 23, 2013, 09:00:33 AM by Reepekg »

ScienceRules

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Re: How to convince my husband to sell the car?
« Reply #2 on: April 23, 2013, 09:49:30 AM »
Sounds like he's pretty annoyed you pushed to get rid of the Jetta and are now changing your mind. I would be.

The inconvenience level of having no car is increased compared with just getting the Jetta fixed up. I don't think you have much of a leg to stand on in this argument, and may have to live with the mistake. I wouldn't want to pay $8k for less convenience.

Since it is a 2013, I think the best way to come out of it financially might be to get use out of it for a couple years and then reconsider selling it to minimize loss. It won't depreciate as drastically now that the initial few months of new -> used are over.

Hi Reepekg! Thanks for face punch! I think I needed to hear it from someone other than my husband. He is definitely annoyed we don't have the Jetta anymore.

To clarify, the idea isn't to sell the car immediately. The $8000 loss is for selling it next January. So we would have had it 1 1/2 years by that point. At this point I just wanted him to consider going without a car.

Vilx-

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Re: How to convince my husband to sell the car?
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2013, 10:25:06 AM »
Or you could take the car and use it for the next 20 years. That would probably amortize the cost too, and with proper care it's quite doable. I think. :P

Flynlow

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Re: How to convince my husband to sell the car?
« Reply #4 on: April 23, 2013, 10:40:10 AM »
I think you're taking the wrong approach.

"How to convince my husband to sell the car?" implies YOU'VE decided what to do, and now how is he going to get on board with that.  Maybe the question should be "How do we reduce/eliminate the car expenses?"  Isn't that the real goal?  Now you're not telling your husband what to do, you and him are a brainstorming team, figuring out this problem. 

Playing devils advocate:

If I were him and you told me to sell the family car that we just went into debt for, after forcing me to get rid of a car I liked, we'd paid off, and all it had wrong was deferred maintenance (timing belt/chain has a replacement interval on VWs), I'd be kinda pissed too. 

Renting a car once a week (4 times a month), at a cost of $300/month, more than covers the upkeep on a paid for car.  That might be part of it too.  I wouldn't want the aggravation of arranging a rental, pickup, damage inspection, and paperwork, when it cost me MORE per month than my old Jetta did.  Seems like a lot of effort for less savings. 

Dee18

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Re: How to convince my husband to sell the car?
« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2013, 12:57:31 PM »
Sounds like this might be one of those times when you can either be right or you can be happy.  I'd go for happy.

N

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Re: How to convince my husband to sell the car?
« Reply #6 on: April 23, 2013, 10:03:05 PM »
I was in a similar situation- but not quite.

We had a paid off 2004 Civic and a 2010 Kia Rondo with a loan balance of 10K.
Last year I convinced husband to go down to one car and we sold the Civic (to my sister, who really needed a car) We put the money towards cc debt.

6 months later, I found MMM, got religion, and realized the extent of our debt and came to the conclusion we needed to sell the car with the loan. We'd already put 10k into it and we both LOVED that car, but in our current situation, it just wasnt feasible at all to keep it and pay 10 more grand (plus more insurance per month).

It was difficult to talk about because he was irritated we already sold our paid off car, although at the time we sold the civi, neither of us considered selling the Kia. but since Id made that decision, he was like, why listen to you now?

Ultimately, our current debt situation was so bad that we just had to sell that car with the loan, there was no way to keep up with it.

I sold it (paid off the loan plus a little extra!) and bought a 2005 ford focus wagon off craigslist with cash for 3800.

So I get where you are coming from and I see where your DH is at, too. I think it is going to depend on your overall financial picture. You made a mistake selling the jetta. You made a mistake buying a new car on loan.

you have to pick your battles, or, know when to fold em. etc  :)

but, listen, you can always sell it later on down the road. take care of it, baby it, dont drive it that much, and maybe a year from now, one of you will feel differently about the situation.


ScienceRules

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Re: How to convince my husband to sell the car?
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2013, 02:06:42 AM »
I think you're taking the wrong approach.

"How to convince my husband to sell the car?" implies YOU'VE decided what to do, and now how is he going to get on board with that.  Maybe the question should be "How do we reduce/eliminate the car expenses?"  Isn't that the real goal?  Now you're not telling your husband what to do, you and him are a brainstorming team, figuring out this problem. 

Playing devils advocate:

If I were him and you told me to sell the family car that we just went into debt for, after forcing me to get rid of a car I liked, we'd paid off, and all it had wrong was deferred maintenance (timing belt/chain has a replacement interval on VWs), I'd be kinda pissed too. 

Renting a car once a week (4 times a month), at a cost of $300/month, more than covers the upkeep on a paid for car.  That might be part of it too.  I wouldn't want the aggravation of arranging a rental, pickup, damage inspection, and paperwork, when it cost me MORE per month than my old Jetta did.  Seems like a lot of effort for less savings.

Thanks for the advice. That phrasing would definitely come off a lot better. I think at this point it's better to just let it go for awhile and see where we are in a year or so. I think it's too emotional of a topic to bring up again anytime soon.

To respond to your other points, trust me there was no twisting of the arm to get a new car. Neither of us knew what was going on with the Jetta when it broke leaving stranded 1+ hours from home. He was more frustrated than I about it. I was the one who suggested a new car, but he was totally on board with the idea, and he preferred the outback over a smaller, more fuel efficient car like the elantra or focus.

As far as renting a zipcar goes... the $300 a month is a high estimate for four full days. I think 2 full days or 3 part days would be more realistic and around $150. For arranging a rental, pickup, damage inspection, and paperwork, etc, my friends who use zipcar say it's super easy, nothing like the normal rental car process. Also, for the time period we had the Jetta we spent about $250/month averaged out on maintenance. This did not include insurance or gas like the zipcar does.

ScienceRules

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Re: How to convince my husband to sell the car?
« Reply #8 on: April 24, 2013, 02:09:38 AM »
Sounds like this might be one of those times when you can either be right or you can be happy.  I'd go for happy.
Yeah, for now I think I'm going to let it go and see where he is in a year or so about it. It's just frustrating sometimes because I'm trying to save money so he can go to med school and it seems like he is choosing the car over med school when he says med school is his dream.

Or you could take the car and use it for the next 20 years. That would probably amortize the cost too, and with proper care it's quite doable. I think. :P
True :)

ScienceRules

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Re: How to convince my husband to sell the car?
« Reply #9 on: April 24, 2013, 02:16:29 AM »
It was difficult to talk about because he was irritated we already sold our paid off car, although at the time we sold the civi, neither of us considered selling the Kia. but since Id made that decision, he was like, why listen to you now?

Ultimately, our current debt situation was so bad that we just had to sell that car with the loan, there was no way to keep up with it.

I sold it (paid off the loan plus a little extra!) and bought a 2005 ford focus wagon off craigslist with cash for 3800.

So I get where you are coming from and I see where your DH is at, too. I think it is going to depend on your overall financial picture. You made a mistake selling the jetta. You made a mistake buying a new car on loan.

you have to pick your battles, or, know when to fold em. etc  :)

but, listen, you can always sell it later on down the road. take care of it, baby it, dont drive it that much, and maybe a year from now, one of you will feel differently about the situation.
Thanks for sharing. His response was definitely, "why should I listen to you now?" As far as our overall financial picture goes, it's okay right now. We have a mortgage and a car payment. No cc debt or student loans, but the hubs wants to go med school when we finish our PhDs and we are PhD students so it's not like we make alot of money. So I see the 20K from selling the car as 20K we don't have to get in student loans in a couple years. I'm going hold off on discussing it again and see how it goes in a year or so. Thanks again!