Author Topic: More than one year as a one car family!  (Read 2441 times)

Lawyeronfire

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More than one year as a one car family!
« on: October 14, 2019, 07:37:24 PM »
We have just passed one year as a one car family!

About 18 months ago my husband got a job within walking distance of our house about the same time I gave birth to twins. His car was at the end of its life so a few months later we donated it and decided to see how long we could go with only one. It has now been more than a year since we got rid of it and we have barely missed it. Even better, about 3 months ago I switched jobs and we switched daycares so that everything is within one mile of our house, so hopefully we won't need a second car for at least a few years. We have already saved a ton in gas, car insurance, and registration.

We are in one of the worst areas of the US for biking and walking so I don't know anyone around here with fewer than one car per adult. Everyone in my real life thinks we are strange so I wanted to share with someone who would appreciate it!

FunkyChopstick

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2019, 07:46:13 AM »
I am raising my mug of coffee and toasting to you. That is pretty impressive, especially with the littles in tow. It is so funny what the normies ( what me and my husband call normal people) turn their nose up to. Kudos to you. The environment is also happy.

Annie101

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2019, 05:57:53 PM »
Way to go!!  We are one car with kids also and I can relate to the strange reaction from other people! 

aetheldrea

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #3 on: October 28, 2019, 08:47:20 PM »
Awesome! So envious of your one-car super powers. We recently picked up a used Dutch style cargo bike; hoping that will be the bridge to get to one car for us, (eventually).

I’ve been reading the blog “hum of the city” (now old) but they do no cars in San Francisco. Just Uber and transit when they need to, or just don’t want to bike it.

Fru-Gal

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2019, 08:51:15 AM »
Way to go!

We have been 1 (20-year-old) car with kids for over a decade! Meanwhile, we've all become proficient bikers!

Now our household bicycle and public transit expenses are higher than our car expenses!

Also, what you are teaching your children by this move is SO important: Independence, using their own feet, bicycle skills, transit skills, how to navigate...

And driving is extremely dangerous. Doesn't help that these days despite cars themselves being safer, drivers are more entitled and erratic than ever.

lcmac32

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #5 on: October 29, 2019, 11:49:28 AM »
This is fanastic....keep it going!!

jpdx

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #6 on: October 30, 2019, 12:06:55 AM »
Congrats! My family is going on 5 years with one car, and we have no desire to downgrade back to two cars. We walk or bike to a majority of errands and love the freedom this provides. Hope it works out for you as well.

elysianfields

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #7 on: October 30, 2019, 02:03:59 AM »
Congratulations, that's great!  More power to you for doing it with young children.

Hoping my continental smugness doesn't come through: we went four years on the car-free diet, then bought a 10+ year-old fuel-efficient hatchback stick for ~ $5000.  We didn't "need" a car, it made it simpler to attend one teenager's sports events hither, thither, and yon, and allowed our other teenager could learn to drive stick.  We've saved a ton as well on fuel, insurance, and driving lessons.

It helps to live someplace with great public transit, lots of bike lanes (we both bike to work nearly every day), and walkable streets and downtown.


AdventureGirl!

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #8 on: October 30, 2019, 08:51:07 AM »
Glad to hear that it is working out for you!!! We are in month 3 of being a one car family and so far, no problems at all. I work from home and so we have it a little easier than some people trying this, plus we live next to a grocery store and two blocks from the library and three blocks from where I would go to the doctor if I needed to go...so we are lucky in that way. But it has been a much much easier transition than I thought! Everyone thought we were crazy and I was going to lose my freedom, but honestly it's not a problem at all and I rather retire early and take the bus.

Chris Pascale

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #9 on: November 01, 2019, 08:19:07 AM »
So great to read. You must have found some incredible cushion in your budget.

We're thinking that when our van dies (Has 165k miles at 10-yo) we will either replace it with a compact car, or maybe nothing at all.

talltexan

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #10 on: November 08, 2019, 07:43:12 AM »
You are badass, great job!

HenryDavid

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #11 on: November 08, 2019, 09:11:23 AM »
You are living proof that what seems “normal” and habitual blinds people to what is perfectly possible.
Now your neighbours can learn that they have more choices in life than they realized. And their lives might get better.
One household at a time . . . .

Trudie

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #12 on: November 08, 2019, 11:04:34 PM »
Excellent!  This can be done.  My husband and I moved to a university town with excellent public transit.  We can walk or bus most places.  We plan to not replace our second car when it craps out.

talltexan

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #13 on: November 12, 2019, 12:05:10 PM »
My children are 7 and 4. We're in the process of moving from to a house that is closer to many of their sports and activities, and--this will be a major point--is within biking distance of their grandparents.

UpNAtom

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #14 on: November 15, 2019, 09:41:24 AM »
This is great!

We have been a one-car family for three years now and have taken up some winter biking to try to keep it that way; there have been minor rumblings of possibly getting an EV to smooth out the daycare runs and such (I also mentioned that taxis could be a valid option when the road and sidewalks are covered in ice and/or snow).

moonpalace

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #15 on: November 15, 2019, 11:41:47 AM »
Kudos to you! We've been a one-car family for 13 years now, living in a "city" of 6,000 people in Northern New England. I walk to work, my wife runs a home-based business, kids walk or bike to school year-round. It has gotten a bit more challenging in some respects as the kids have aged, and easier in others. Our kids are 10 and 14 now and it seems likely that they will both have no memory of the family every owning more than one car.

Keep it up!

Gin1984

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #16 on: November 24, 2019, 11:56:46 AM »
That is awesome! 

iluvzbeach

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #17 on: November 24, 2019, 03:48:44 PM »
Congrats! It’s really not that hard, right?

This month we celebrated four years of being a one car family. It’s been a non-event for us, except for all the money we’ve saved by NOT having that second vehicle. I highly recommend couples and/or families give it a shot.

caleb

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Re: More than one year as a one car family!
« Reply #18 on: November 24, 2019, 08:44:45 PM »
Nice work.  We went to one car about 18 months ago, and I don't see us going back to being a two car family.

On Saturday I was talking with a friend who's been a single car family for six or seven years while raising preschoolers, and he agreed that he has zero desire to go back to having two cars.

In my mind, it's not only that it's not a burden, it's that getting away from routine car use makes my life better.

When I bike or walk to work I am reliably happier and more relaxed than when I drive.

Cycling to work keeps me connected to the natural world.  I notice the humidity, the direction of the wind, and the smells in a way that I miss in a car.

Cycling connects me to the human world.  I've met far more people at the bike rack than I ever have in the parking ramp.  Somehow bike racks are one of the last places that strangers chat.

And, since this is MMM, I'll mention that not being in a car keeps me from wasting money.  When I have the capacity to run around buying stuff and loading it in the car, I weirdly seem to do it.  Stopping for just a couple things for dinner metastasizes into a $60 grocery run even though the fridge was already amply stocked.  Or that I need to run to the hardware store, which never ends cheaply.  It's as if having an empty car capable of shlepping all manner of commodities home is a void that must be filled.  But it's amazing how many of those errands that seem necessary are really not necessary at all.  Don't have the car, don't do the errands, don't waste money.

Cars can be very useful, but I never want to go back to routinely and thoughtlessly driving again.