Author Topic: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)  (Read 788 times)

typicalmillenial

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Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« on: June 17, 2019, 09:00:59 AM »
Hello everyone,

I will give more context on my financial position below, but here is the situation:

I am driving a 2014 Honda accord that I bought in a haste because my hand-me-down car died and I needed a commuter asap. Don't love it, don't hate it. I want to trade in for a Subaru Outback as it will be more accommodating to winter activities, camping gear, bikes, etc (things that the current vehicle does not do well). I live in New England and these things are what I spend a great deal of time doing.

I genuinely think that cars are overprices pieces of steel, and I want something that I can drive into the ground and that will accommodate the things mentioned above. Gas mileage is about the same on the two cars, and the outback is AWD which is something I know I don't need, but think would benefit from greatly.

Can someone please punch me in the face, or at the very least explain to me why I cannot seem to get over the "need" for this different car. I view the Outback as swiss army knife that I can keep for a very long time, but it would take some cash that might be better deployed elsewhere.

This has been an ongoing internal debate for the past 6 months, and I can't seem to get over it. Then again, a Subaru Outback being my "dream" car doesn't seem all that bad....


Financial Situation (rough)

Age- 24
Singe
HCOL area

Assets
401k-$7000 (24% of pay bi week)
Roth IRA- $12000
Cash- $6,000

Salary- $67,000 base + commission(expected $100k + for 2020- currently in software sales)

Expenses- $3500/ mo
-includes all spending (fixed and variable)

Car Breakdown

Accord

Loan- $11,700 left
Payment- $270/mo
Insurance- $67/mo

Outback

Loan- $16000 with a $7000-$10000 down payment
Payment/Insurance would rise, but not by very much based on my assessments.

Thanks for reading and any advice!

RWD

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #1 on: June 17, 2019, 09:33:14 AM »
I was on board with your plan until you got to the loan. Take your $7-10k down payment and buy a used 2010-2014 Outback outright. If you must have a 2015+ then wait until they depreciate some more.

Side note: if you can get good financing (e.g. ~3%) you should take it, but not in a scenario where you are buying a more expensive car than you could with cash.

teltic

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2019, 09:37:03 AM »
You're asking mustashians if it's okay to buy a $26k car? $26k?

Anything over $10k a face punch worthy. Like RWD said, buy a used Outback.

RWD

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2019, 09:54:52 AM »
By the way, the 2010 Subaru Outback is not much of a downgrade over the 2015.

2010 vs 2015+
Cargo space: 34.3 cu ft vs 35.5 cu ft
Acceleration: 8.6 sec vs 9.1 sec (2010 is faster!)
Fuel economy: 24 mpg vs 28 mpg

typicalmillenial

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #4 on: June 17, 2019, 02:59:25 PM »
@RWD @teltic

Thanks for responding. To be totally honest, I think I am just falling victim to marketing. I want an AWD car, but probably don't actually need one for what I am doing. At least I don't need it enough to take a large chunk of a bonus and put it into a vehicle at this point in my life/career (that money goes further invested the right way...)

If I put some racks on the accord it can fit whatever I need, coupled with good snow tires I will be able to get just about anywhere. Plus, the car will last forever.

thanks again

Another Reader

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #5 on: June 17, 2019, 03:16:42 PM »
Get your savings rate up and focus on FIRE.  Freedom is a lot more valuable than all wheel drive...

teltic

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #6 on: June 17, 2019, 08:27:22 PM »
I lust over getting a new car all the time.  I nearly bought a 2014 Nissan Leaf... "To save gas money". I sometimes tell myself "with $7500 rebate and $3500 state rebate, its cheaper to buy new!" excuse.

In time... I'll get an electric car... For now, I'll put another 100k miles on my 2013 Hyundai Elantra. 

Enjoy your current car.  Once you hit ~200k miles... You have my approval to buy a <$10k car :)

nereo

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #7 on: June 18, 2019, 06:03:37 AM »
Like you @typicalmillenial - I live in New England and my main activities are hiking, backpacking, cycling and skiing. I drive a 10+ year old Honda Civic (with snow tires in the winter!).   I got this car because the price was awesome and the fuel economy is good, no other reason than that. -- it was in that sweet spot of being older but low miles.

You don't *need* an outback or any other more 'sporty' car.  While I won't deny they are nice, and would accept one if free, you certainly don't need to go $7k into debt for one.  Bikeracks and roof-racks allow you to carry whatever gear you need on your existing ride for just a few hundred dollars (pref. off of Craigslist).  I even put kayaks on my Civic, no problem. MMM wrote a post about turning a small car into a bigger one. Dedicated winter tires do far more than all-season tires on an AWD vehicle.

Realize most of what you are desiring right now is marketing getting into your brain.  It's ok - they are very good at it.  But it's just a very expensive want you can easily do without.

Better Change

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #8 on: June 18, 2019, 09:06:40 AM »
Subarus are over-valued.  Even used ones are ridiculously overpriced.  Many of them have engine issues as well.  We looked briefly when we had to replace our 2001 Camry (sad face) but noped out of there pretty quickly.  We settled for a Mazda 3 hatchback.

I roll up to trailheads with my 2006 Civic.  I haven't had issues getting our bikes/camping equipment/skis in or on it.  The worst part is the low clearance when there are humongous potholes in those inevitably unpaved roads getting to the trail, but I've never gotten stuck.

Also, I laughed pretty hard during our first substantial snowstorm here in the mid-Atlantic last fall: there were numerous AWD Subarus in the ditches while my trusty Civic with brand new all weather tires was powering up and down hills like a champ.

Uturn

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #9 on: June 18, 2019, 10:34:49 AM »
Let's ask the question another way.

Dear MMM community,

I have an $11k hair on fire situation, and I am good with that.  So good in fact that I would like your opinion about pouring some gas on that fire because I don't have enough luxury in my current car.

frugaliknowit

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2019, 11:58:53 AM »
There you go:

"If I put some racks on the accord it can fit whatever I need, coupled with good snow tires I will be able to get just about anywhere. Plus, the car will last forever".

kendallf

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #11 on: June 18, 2019, 12:17:35 PM »
I have nothing to add here but I read your title as "Itch that can't be scratched (cat post) and I have built a couple of really nice cat scratching posts.  Disappointed now.

nereo

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #12 on: June 18, 2019, 01:08:26 PM »
I have nothing to add here but I read your title as "Itch that can't be scratched (cat post) and I have built a couple of really nice cat scratching posts.  Disappointed now.
oh, please share!  I'm always looking for creative and low-cost ways of keeping my felines entertained...

JLee

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #13 on: June 18, 2019, 01:09:53 PM »
I have nothing to add here but I read your title as "Itch that can't be scratched (cat post) and I have built a couple of really nice cat scratching posts.  Disappointed now.
oh, please share!  I'm always looking for creative and low-cost ways of keeping my felines entertained...

My cats' favorite scratcher is a small piece of plywood that I stapled carpet to. They absolutely love it and it was made out of scrap stuff I had kicking around.

kendallf

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Re: Itch that can't be scratched (car post)
« Reply #14 on: June 18, 2019, 01:22:07 PM »
There goes the car advice...

I have made two or three using a plywood base and a 4x4, with large diameter sisal rope wound around it.  Our cats seem to prefer the rope to any commercial carpeted ones.  No pictures handy, unfortunately.