I have read multiple news articles about how millennials don’t drive and have no interest in buying and owning cars. While the idea seems to be driven by the notion that we are an apathetic bunch, the reality has more to do with money. And when I look at my finances with a sober eye, I can no longer afford to keep my car. Here is why:
1. The cost of gas. No matter how good you are at saving money on gas, you still have to buy it in order to get from place to place. And while I can allot for the price of gas in my monthly budget, it does add up over time.
2. The cost of insurance. My car is paid off, but while I was paying it off, my dad was paying for the insurance. He has since stopped paying for the insurance. It may seem like I should just suck it up and pay it, but the monthly payment alone is more than I can afford. The extra money a month from not having to pay the regular car bill is already doing my wallet a world of good.
3. The cost of repairs. I have spent at least $750 dollars in repairs on my car, and it’s already making another funny sound. It’s possible that the amount of time my car spends at the mechanic is specific to that car alone, but that doesn’t mean that everyone is immune to the cost of potential repairs. Sometimes things that go wrong with a car are a cheap fix. Other times, not so much. The fact of the matter is, I don’t have the income to drop upwards of a hundred dollars on what might be a simple fix. I don’t have a monthly budget that allows for an extra hundred dollars in my current situation.
4. The cost of upkeep. Cars don’t just run perfect except when something goes wrong. There is also the cost of oil changes, tire rotation and general upkeep. And even though those things are usually not very expensive, the cost of upkeep makes a fourth way in which a paid off car is costing me money.
I’m already a pedestrian most of the time, and I am no stranger to taking the bus or a cab if need be. When I looked at it financially, there was no reason to keep the car.