It was just over a month ago that I bought my new car. As you may remember, I didn't want to buy a new car but some vandals forced the decision upon me. I ended up with the choice of a cheap and probably fairly reliable Plymouth Acclaim or an expensive but very nice and probably fairly reliable Honda Accord. I bought the Accord, who can argue with heated leather seats? (Many people complimented me on my new car, thus the "Whoas" in the title of the blog.)
The cliché money can't buy happiness is likely due to the fact that with every new purchase the novelty eventually wears off. How long does it for the novelty of a new car to wear off? Just over a month. Now I really like my new car but as nice as it is I've come to the conclusion that I can't afford it. Although it's true that any bank would merrily give me multiple times as much money as I still owe I feel that I can't afford it.
When I owned the Tercel I really didn't have much stress when it came to my car. I knew that if something on it broke, I could have it fixed and not really miss the money that it cost. Now however, I have this debt hanging over my head. I wanted to pay off my car before the year end but I don't think that it's possible unless my roommates decide to cover my part of the rent for the remainder of the year. (If you did guys, I would do all the dishes.) I also realize that I should get some winter tires so there's another several hundred dollars.
It's not only that, I also worry about the car. The airbag light is on (and I would like to think I learned my lesson about ignoring warning lights) so I should probably get that looked at. Now I worry about what the repairs would cost. There's also a little rip on the driver's seat. I rub it every time I get in and out making it worse all the time. I would like to get it fixed before it gets worse but that's no doubt an expensive repair. If I don't fix it though, I worry about the resale value. Actually I fairly regularly worry about the resale value which is stupid with cars because the hard fact is that they depreciate rapidly.
Christmas is also coming and the last couple of years I've spent a fair bit of money on gifts through the World Vision Christmas catalogue. I would like to do the same this year but I don't want to be stressed out about it either. I'd feel bad if I spent less this year just because I'm driving an expensive car especially since I'm earning more.
The other thing is that I realize that the only thing I really like about this car is the cd player. I love listening to music. Don't get me wrong, I like the sunroof, the leather, the keyless entry, and the myriad of other options, but I wouldn't miss them all that much but I worry that the longer I wait the harder it will become to live without them. The question is though, are they worth the extra stress? I think no. As my friend mentioned, you should own your car, and not let it own you. I also think that I am perhaps overly sensitive to being in debt, a trait that bothers me not at all.