One day, my 2001 Durango with 160,000 miles will give up the ghost. It has been, and still is, a good car. Maybe the best I've owned. It is my GOODD (get out of dodge... in a Dodge) car. But since I only own one car at a time, if I had a Fiat 500 that would also be my GOODD car. Anyway.
I'll never buy a new car again. I don't see the point. Pay twice as much to get to drive the first 40,000 miles myself? When I intend to add 100,000+ miles to it my own self? And I had a bad experience with the last new car I owned.
So a recent trip to the garage to get the power steering fixed got me looking at he online used car market. I paid something like $16,000 for this fambly truckster in 2005. Now, six years later, if I want to buy a 4 year old car with the same wear I will pay... $16,000. Not bad.
When I bought the car I have now, I shunted the car payment to a separate account so I could cover the monthly bill. I never stopped doing that, just put it into savings. I figured I shouldn't get used to not paying a car payment. So I now have a sizable sum in liquid form saved up for a rainy day (nigh stormy at this point) or, more likely, that money will go to a down payment on the next car. With a little luck and time, that pile will go to just buying the next car outright. Dave Ramsey would be proud. And I didn't have to eat beans and rice to get here.
I like long trips on the Eastern Shore of Maryland on weekends, for whatever reason, because that's a good time to catch Dave Ramsey. He is one of the few call in talk radio shows that doesn't annoy me. The problem with call in shows is that an interesting host turns over their programming to amateurs that like to hear their own voice coming in over the radio. You have to a be a skilled Boss Jock to make that worth listening to. I think that was the secret to Rush Limbaugh's success a couple decades ago. Effective management of the callers. He was the first one to develop that talent and it got him more sponsors and stations. Rush could have had a radio show about car repair and done just as well, I think.
Back to my car. I chose the Durango because it was a mid sized V8 SUV. It could cover the 4x4 work I need with snow that twice a year it snows enough, and is good for camping that twice a year I need that, and for hauling a trailer those 3 times a year I need that. Church picnics, that sort of thing. And it could haul my crap inside. A Suburban sized SUV was too big, and the Jeep Cherokee was too small. Not too many SUV models out there that achieve the Goldilocks effect for me. The Trailblazer and Escape had other things going against them.
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