When Ruby was born, we outgrew our family car. My Toyota Sienna, which has been a wonderful and extremely reliable car, only seated 7.
During my pregnancy we saved for a larger vehicle, and we paid cash for our new (to us) car.
Debt is not an option for our family.
We are committed to living a debt free lifestyle, avoiding all debt and doing things on a cash basis. During my pregnancy we attended Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University and learned about his “drive free” plan. We became ever more determined to delay gratification, save for our needs and not incur debt.
Car payments keep people in slavery to a depreciating liability. Cars are not an asset. Assets make you money (investments, businesses, etc). Cars are a liability. Cars cost money. Simple. There are plenty of people who say “You’re always gonna have a car payment”, but those people are mired in a poverty mentality. Also, they’re wrong.
Research show that the people in this country with the highest net worth buy high quality, late model used cars. They let someone else take the huge depreciation hit when you drive the new car off the lot. They save thousands and always drive something nice. But don’t take my word for it. Just read any of Thomas J. Stanley’s books for the proof.
We felt confident that we would have enough cash saved for a nice, new to us used car by the time the baby was a couple of months old.
We Paid Cash For Our New Car
But, my husband had a great year in his business and even our accountant was shocked at how much we owed the tax man. Our savings was wiped out. We could have let this get us down, but instead we viewed it as a blessing that we were able to stroke a check and pay our taxes!
We kept saving money any way we could. We had a yard sale, sold a bunch of unneeded stuff on eBay and Craigslist, and stuck to our budget.
I made a large poster that we put on the wall and every time we made a deposit into our savings, we added another peak to the graph. It was motivating to watch it go up and up.
Two weeks ago, we CUT A CHECK and drove this baby home:
It is an indescribably great feeling to have a very nice new to us car that meets our needs, emergency fund savings still in the bank, and NO DEBT. I’m so proud of my husband and myself for having patience, diligence and staying the course to meet our goals.
Of course, life is full of sweet irony. We found out a week ago that we will need to upgrade in several months. To a 9 seater.
(Update: we paid cash for another car a year later, this time a 15-seater passenger van.)