It’s amazing how tempting a new car is. You see the car on the ads, on the road, and/or hear friends talk about it. You dream about what it would be like to have that new car smell, an odometer that has single digit miles on it, and not a scratch on it. In particular, trucks can off/on intrigue me to daydream a bit.
Then I look at my current car, a 2009 Hyundai Elantra. It has some scratches of course, as any 5-year-old car would. It has low miles for its age, just breaking 29,000 this past week. It could use a car detailing inside, but still runs and looks like new.
And most importantly, it is 100% paid off. With 5 years left on its warranty and so low miles that it’ll will be barely 60,000 miles in total 5 years from now. Assuming nothing major changes, you’re talking many more than 5 years left in this car.
Today I loaded a walk-behind lawnmower, the quartered sections of my old plywood basement door that was replaced two weeks ago, and 5-6 long sections of lumber. I had the fold down the seats, put a plastic sheet down, and stuff them into the car. But they fit and the car brought me to the town transfer station without incident.
Sure a truck would be convenient, allowing me to do a single trip to the transfer station instead of 2 or 3. Sure a new car would be nice. But, it is very nice to own that car 100% without a payment and with many more miles to go on it. And soon, my wife’s car will be in the same situation.
That is the beginning of financial freedom for sure.