Author Topic: should i trade in cars  (Read 3457 times)

show me the money

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should i trade in cars
« on: May 21, 2015, 09:59:43 AM »
Hello all,

 Absolutely love this community, and need to pick your brains. my wife and i have made a major effort to become more mustachian, invest lots of income lately, maxing 401k, not buying as much crap, but still struggle with that one.

 My question comes to our cars, we have one child now, and looking to expand our family to two or three children max, i know about the three across in smaller cars, but right now my problem comes from my wife's two large dogs ~ 75lbs each, and it is hard to take them with us to my mothers house two hours away.

I have a 2005 camry with 87,000 miles on it, and she has a 2005 corolla with around 150,000 miles, both have been paid off for about 5 years now, an i had every intention of driving them into the ground, i have been thinking of following MMM with getting a used minivan, and a hatchback or wagon, both our vehicles are sedans, and lately i find doing anything such as picking up wood to expand our vegetable garden a major pain, i like the idea of a minivan for the room to haul all of us including the dogs, and the ease of hauling wood and supplies, just not huge on the mileage, however my camry does not seem to get much better than the sienna estimates. i can purchase the van outright but would probably finance as the rates are so low i can put that money into my investments instead and come out on top.

not sure if getting a van or hatchback/wagon is worth the cost while both cars run fine and have a lot of miles left.


Clean Shaven

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Re: should i trade in cars
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2015, 10:25:02 AM »
Some random thoughts:

- If you've had the Corolla and/or Camry for awhile, then you know the repair/maintenance history, and have a decent basis for believing they'll be reliable (or not) in the future.  That's a plus, vs. buying a used minivan whose history you do not know.

- A roof rack (will hold long items like wood) and/or trailer (install $125 trailer hitch on car, buy $250 trailer from Harbor Freight) might cover your household/garden hauling needs.

- Problem still remains of how to haul around 2x 75# dogs plus kids.  Minivan would cover this, and the other items too.

- If selling one or other of the cars, I think I might be inclined to keep the Camry (larger, lower miles) over the Corolla.  The larger car may be more useful for the kid(s) and car seats. 

- Alternative to minivan, perhaps:  since you seem to like Toyota, maybe consider a used Venza?  Basically a Camry wagon, might cover your space needs, but not sure if cargo area is big enough to hold those dogs.

ketchup

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Re: should i trade in cars
« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2015, 10:37:42 AM »
How often do you take both dogs to your mother's house two hours away?

If you replaced the Camry with a minivan (or wagon), how often would you drive it without the need for the extra space?

Figure out the total expense of the minivan or wagon (cost per mile, accounting for gas, depreciation, insurance, maintenance) and compare it to the Camry's same number.  Multiply that difference by the number of miles you would drive the minivan per year (utilizing it to its fullest or driving it empty, so total miles).  That's your total yearly cost increase.

If the extra cost is high and you don't travel to your mother's house very often, it could make more sense to simply rent a larger car for the occasion.  If either or both are not true, the minivan/wagon could make sense.

My girlfriend and I have two cars, one small hatchback and one big wagon.  The small car has cost 17 cents/mile to drive, and the big car has cost 23 cents/mile.  At least 80% of the miles put on the big car utilize it for things the small car could not do (also frequently involving dogs).  All other times it sits parked (with few exceptions) while the small car does all the routine commuting, grocery getting, trips with less cargo, and other nonsense BS driving.  If we had to use the big car for more single-person activities (commuting, etc) it would make it a far less efficient tool and cost us a lot more overall.  Every 10,000 miles of driving in the big car costs us an extra $600 over the small car.

With "more than occasional" needs for more room, I truly feel the large wagon + tiny hatchback approach to be pretty close to optimal for a two-car couple.

show me the money

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: should i trade in cars
« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2015, 02:08:57 PM »
How often do you take both dogs to your mother's house two hours away?

If you replaced the Camry with a minivan (or wagon), how often would you drive it without the need for the extra space?

Figure out the total expense of the minivan or wagon (cost per mile, accounting for gas, depreciation, insurance, maintenance) and compare it to the Camry's same number.  Multiply that difference by the number of miles you would drive the minivan per year (utilizing it to its fullest or driving it empty, so total miles).  That's your total yearly cost increase.

If the extra cost is high and you don't travel to your mother's house very often, it could make more sense to simply rent a larger car for the occasion.  If either or both are not true, the minivan/wagon could make sense.

My girlfriend and I have two cars, one small hatchback and one big wagon.  The small car has cost 17 cents/mile to drive, and the big car has cost 23 cents/mile.  At least 80% of the miles put on the big car utilize it for things the small car could not do (also frequently involving dogs).  All other times it sits parked (with few exceptions) while the small car does all the routine commuting, grocery getting, trips with less cargo, and other nonsense BS driving.  If we had to use the big car for more single-person activities (commuting, etc) it would make it a far less efficient tool and cost us a lot more overall.  Every 10,000 miles of driving in the big car costs us an extra $600 over the small car.

With "more than occasional" needs for more room, I truly feel the large wagon + tiny hatchback approach to be pretty close to optimal for a two-car couple.


The trips are only a couple times a year, here is where i would need a face punch, i thought about purchasing the sienna and keeping the other two cars, only using the minivan on the weekend for the hauling stuff and trips to mom's house. then trading in the camry for a smaller hatchback after the mini-van was paid off.

the trailer part is a good alternative for hauling. i suppose a large wagon would work, typically what we have done in the past is rent a van that has the third row fold flat then it has room for the dogs and the luggage/baby stuff since we stay for a few days when we go. we just have to vacuum out the van really well when we get back and take the van back which can be a pain. i get tired of renting a van.

Mother Fussbudget

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Re: should i trade in cars
« Reply #4 on: May 21, 2015, 04:54:01 PM »
Twice a YEAR?

<punch>

Stop thinking about trading in your cars RIGHT NOW!   You have another 210,000 miles on the Corolla, and many, MANY more on the Camry.  Drive them both until they drop, or until you can give one of them to your kids as a first car.

In the meantime... RENT a mini-van twice a year for the trip to gramma's house.

show me the money

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: should i trade in cars
« Reply #5 on: May 22, 2015, 07:00:24 AM »
Twice a YEAR?

<punch>

Stop thinking about trading in your cars RIGHT NOW!   You have another 210,000 miles on the Corolla, and many, MANY more on the Camry.  Drive them both until they drop, or until you can give one of them to your kids as a first car.

In the meantime... RENT a mini-van twice a year for the trip to gramma's house.

so no mini-van, what about hatchback/wagon? i wish i had bought one of those then

ketchup

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Re: should i trade in cars
« Reply #6 on: May 22, 2015, 08:52:18 AM »
Based on what's been said, I would say keep renting the van twice a year.  Add a roof rack or trailer hitch to the Camry to allow for hauling needs, or if infrequent just use the "$19 for the first 75 minutes" truck at Home Depot.

IF you get a large wagon, I would absolutely say have it replace the Camry.  You probably wouldn't like my suggestion for a wagon...

show me the money

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: should i trade in cars
« Reply #7 on: May 22, 2015, 01:01:17 PM »
Based on what's been said, I would say keep renting the van twice a year.  Add a roof rack or trailer hitch to the Camry to allow for hauling needs, or if infrequent just use the "$19 for the first 75 minutes" truck at Home Depot.

IF you get a large wagon, I would absolutely say have it replace the Camry.  You probably wouldn't like my suggestion for a wagon...

haha nice picture, i have not seen one of those is a while. no i was looking at more like a subaru outback/forrester for wagon, but really leaning more towards honda fit, toyota matrix, or a prius c or v if i could find a prius v used at a great price that would be nice, i figure ive got a good 5 - 10 years for that though

thanks for all the advice everyone

ketchup

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Re: should i trade in cars
« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2015, 02:10:14 PM »
If you don't need the space of a Buick Roadmaster Wagon (that's mine; it's great), something like a Subaru wagon could make sense.  They can be thirsty given their size though as they are AWD.  But if something as small as a Fit or Matrix would do the job, I'd say it's hard to go wrong with those.