Your vehicle may not be rusting away in a deserted field, but that doesn’t mean you don’t hanker for a new ride. The temptation is there every time you’re on the road! But before deciding to abandon your paid-off or nearly paid-off vehicle for some fancy new one, think again. Here are some reasons to stick with the car, truck or SUV you have:
It simply works and is reliable. As long as you continue proper maintenance of your vehicle, you should be able to keep it running well beyond 100,000 miles. In fact, thanks to better engineering and manufacturing, many cars and trucks get well over 200,000 miles. Keep a tally of maintenance and repair costs each year. Then divide that amount by 12 to determine what it costs monthly to maintain your vehicle. If that is below the monthly cost of a new vehicle payment, you are still saving money! If the old vehicle is costing more than it saves, by all means, spring for a new one!
Vehicles only depreciate. Even a new vehicle will quickly lose value. Your older one has an advantage here. Those small dings to the doors or spills on the carpet may be frustrating in a new vehicle; in your older vehicle, they can just be overlooked.
Insurance and other costs may be lower. A new set of wheels might cost you more to insure. And, you might miss out on discounted rates some states offer for registration and property taxes on older vehicles.
Instead of taking on a new payment for a new car, consider putting aside that much money each month. You can use the fund to keep your older vehicle running, or as a down payment when it finally is time to make a switch.
Here are some more tips on how you can keep your vehicle maintained and running well past 100,000 miles. Hint: Check your glove box!