Shopping for a New Car?

I had previously mentioned that I would be looking for a new(er) car this summer. Nothing has changed on that front. We have saved $7,400 for a car so far. I, unfortunately, inherited a life insurance policy of $10,000. This is going to be used for a down payment. Mr. Wanderlust and I had originally planned on buying a used car. We have had a hard time finding a used car with the mileage we wanted, type of car, features, and price point we are willing to put into a used car. A car is not an investment in our minds. It is going to depreciate no matter what we do, used or new. We are also very worried about service history on a used car. With the amount of driving that we have to do in the next 9 months, we want a car with a great service history. That isn’t something you are guaranteed with a used car. To get the car, again, with the features, mileage max, peace of mind, etc. we started to get into new car prices anyways.

Yes, there is a ton of justifying why we are getting a new car. It is what it is. It makes both of us feel more at ease mentally. So, I went to test drive cars the other day. I picked up a friend of mine who likes cars and away we went. Our first stop was a Honda dealer to check out the Honda Fit. The primary feature that I want, is a navigation system built in. Out of the three GPS I have owned they always seem to fall off the window when I really, really need to see it. We drive a lot already, and with traveling across country three times in the next month, I would just like to have it built into my dash. Mr. Wanderlust has mentioned his desire for Satellite radio on everyone of our road trips to date. Neither of these are needs. They are wants, for sure. I fully recognize that.

So, at the Honda dealer, I go in to look at the Fit. I like small cars. I tell the salesman I am looking for the Fit with Nav. They only had four fits on the lot and they were all base models. He informs me that they do have a new to the line, for 2016, car called the H-RV. He tells me it is larger than the Fit and I’m turned off. I’m not a fan of big cars. He convinces me to look at it, it is his job so mostly just humoring him. It’s bigger than I expected. He shows me the features and how it looks and all that and offers me to test drive. I do. I fell in love with this dang vehicle. It is a crossover, so a small SUV kind of. It is $26,720 for the car. Tax, fees, etc will be upwards of $2,350. I’m thinking about going into the dealer that is right by my house/church, tomorrow to run some numbers. I have no intention of buying yet. Not at all until early/mid July.

I did test drive other cars that day. I test drove a Chevy Cruze, which was a horrible experience all around. The salesman was awful. He gave us a car to test drive with the gas light on. He was more interested in getting me out the door in a car that day, than answering my questions about the car I came in for. I also hated the way the car drove. It was rough, uncomfortable, and the transmission was jerky. I also test drove a Ford Focus. I already liked the car. Think it is great, but I do worry about the backseat lack of leg space. I plan on having whatever car I get for at minimum, 10 years, if not longer. I have a tendency to drive cars until they no longer run or are practical for the needed use.

So, after test driving, I wrote my husband a lengthy letter about each of the cars and my thoughts and asking him what he thought. I also ran some general numbers using online calculators to give him a financial cost outlook. I know I will have $18k to put down on the car when I go to purchase. We are still awaiting my husbands pay to take hold, so I’m only running financials based off of my paychecks right now. If his start hitting our account prior then I could come close to, if not, a 20k down payment, along with the trade-in of my car. Honestly, all of this could go poof if my husband says no. This isn’t a one person decision, so I have to wait to hear from him about it all.

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