Starting a car fund.

Well, this is long overdue. It’s been popping up in my head more and more and it’s really getting urgent now: I need to start saving for another car. The inspection on my 2004 Aveo was due in December. I went in November to have things checked up and start preparing, I knew I had a few things to fix but I wasn’t quite prepared for the amount of stuff I needed to do. I asked the garage to look it over for general maintenance as well and asked what I could do to prolong the life of the car. The guy showed me a few things and said to make sure to fix the rust, have it undercoated and with some maintenance I should get another few years out of it.

an expensive list
an expensive list

I got creative and sourced parts on ebay, amazon, new and used in the US and Canada, ordered them, paid a family friend to do some work and spread out the cost. Over the past 5 weeks I’ve spent $340 on a new windshield and wipers, $280 cash on a set of studded winter tires, $80 on a set of winter rims, $15 on two new bearings (yay ebay), $95 for a new resonator (internet) and $38 to have it installed, $340 cash to fix the rocker panel, rust all around the bottoms of the doors and the keyhole in the trunk + putting the winter tires and rims on. And then a few dollars on a used washer pump.

I’m about $1,200 into it right now. Why don’t I just buy a new car? Well, that costs more money, higher insurance, I would have to borrow and to keep this thing running IS actually cheaper. It’s not exactly fun though.

At this point all I have left to fix is to have the bearing and washer pump installed. However, before I’m able to pass inspection I need to replace the daytime running light module… which is fried, and its fried due to a known issue and is part of a GM recall but there’s no fix… so they said pay for the $170 part + installation and tax and I’ll get reimbursed… at some point. UGH.

vroom vroom
vroom vroom

So, having told you all that. I realized… I really, like REALLY, need to start saving for another vehicle now. Actually not really NOW, but more like five years ago. I have always intended to drive this car for as long as possible and I have always intended to save and pay cash for another car. It’s on my bucketlist. My little car is now ten years old and having the rust fixed, having it undercoated and putting all the money into replacing these parts I do anticipate keeping it running for several more years but besides saving for travel, retirement, my emergency fund, a possible future house (that fund doesn’t even exist yet… until I sell my house) and I haven’t even thought about kids/family yet… and well, life, it’s HARD to save even more especially since I continue to not make more money every year.

It’s so frustrating because yeah I got a little raise, but I’m barely keeping up with inflation income wise. I earned somewhere around $30k gross last year, it’s varied up and down a bit but I have yet to top $40k. I’m under employed, I do apply for jobs and sometimes I get an interview but the whole issue is FRUSTRATING. I keep chugging with what I have, I overspend, I try to save..I get ahead little by little. I need to try harder, but I’ll get to that in my 2015 goals post.

Reality came knocking this month and I realized I need to get serious about saving for a new vehicle. I live in PEI and unless I live in downtown Charlottetown AND work there, there is just no going without a car. Ive set up an automated savings plan to contribute $4.00 per week to my vehicle fund. I started with $10.00. I now have $18.00. I’ll save about $220 by the end of 2015. That’s barely anything, but it’s something and something is always better than nothing. I learned from my botched plan to begin saving 10% of my net income mid-2013 that trying to start some new ambitious savings goal just doesn’t work but starting small and snowballing it does. (Seriously, I wanted to start saving, suddenly, on top of everything $250 or so extra a month while I was losing work, it was completely unrealistic)

So that’s what I’ll do. $4 a week. I wrote down an increase to $6.00 in my planner on May 1st, but first let’s get through the next few months and see that I can keep this up. I have a lot of goals and a lot of stuff to plan for 2015.

What kind of car do you drive?

Published by Renée

I write about my life, travel and my financial up and downs on my blog, Nickel By Nickel, while contradicting myself daily. ;)

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