Wednesday, October 31, 2012

What I Don't Think I Will Be Buying Anytime Soon

At work the other day my boss was asking a lot of questions about my driving (whether I have a license, how often I drive, etc) and I started to worry he was going to suggest I buy a car. See, I have this new treatment where I need to go to the doctor's office (across town!) once a week, and because of the schedule in which I can go, that means leaving work early some days. By TTC, the trip is minimum one hour one way. I will get into more details on this treatment soon when I have time to write up the post since I haven't done an update on my treatment in 2.5 months. Oops

Anyway, in addition to that my role is changing to one where I need to leave the office more and it may be convenient to have my own car so I don't have to coordinate with my boss.

I have never owned a car. This might sound ridiculous for a 26 yr old, but I couldn't afford one in high school, then I went to University and could afford one even less (no debt on graduation was worth giving up that kind of luxury!). Then I moved to my dad's where I could walk to the GO train and commuted to the city. And then I moved to the city and it is just way cheaper to take transit. I never really wanted/needed a car before!

But now I kind of do want one. I find myself going home to the suburbs to visit family more, I commute 45 minutes one way to work (on a good day!) and now I need to leave the office so much and I want to minimize the impact on my work by doing so.

So I priced it out! And guess what! I WON'T be buying a car any time soon.

Here was my quick monthly breakdown:
Parking: $150
- I don't own a parking spot and renting in my building is pricy. This doesn't even include parking at work (no idea if I can even get a spot) or parking at the doctor's or around town

Insurance: $200
- I recently found out that if you haven't had insurance before they charge you quite the premium until you build a good driving record with them. So even though I have had my full license and a clean record, I can expect to spend minimum $200/month for the first year. Obviously this could depend on how much insurance I buy too (eg: new car = higher insurance)

Car Payment/Lease: $250
I have no solution to the argument of buy new, buy used, or lease. But I think if we assume I will pay for SOME sort of car for four years, it will be roughly $250 a month. That is pretty accurate for a lease, or car payment with a down payment, or just buying a used car with the down payment money and dividing the cost over four years.

If you add that up, I am spending $600 a month without even DRIVING the car. I think with gas, maintenance, plate renewal, and occasional parking I could be looking at $700 or more (I have no idea how much gas I would actually go through but I would buy a small, gas-efficient car).

Even if I scrape off things here and there and take into account my insurance dropping to a reasonable rate after a year, it would still be at least $500 easy. PER MONTH. That is $6000 a year I could put towards my mortgage. Or vacations. Or fancy new clothes.

Therefore, unless my boss offers a good raise or even to buy me the darn car, I don't think I will be taking the plunge quite yet.

Sigh, good bye dream car.

Oh and PS- Happy Halloween! Was I supposed to do a Halloween post? I bet everyone else will today. I'm a rebel haha


  1. $150 for parking?!? Ridiculous!

    On the flip side, believe it or not, $200 looks pretty good for monthly insurance costs in the city. If you've never had insurance before, I wouldn't be overly surprised if it was even more than that when it was all said and done.

    Cars are ridiculously expensive. Just for fun, check out ZipCar or a similar service. Last year, when our insurance went up without warning again, we priced it out and found we could get a zipcar every weekend and once during the week and it would be about the same price as owning one ourselves. And we don't have to pay for parking! It's an option - and they're all over the city now!

    1. I looked at zip car once and it didnt work out as a great deal when all was said and done. But i wasnt comparing against ownership costs at the time!


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