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168 Past Due – Should We Repair Or Replace The Car?

by Derek Sisterhen on August 12, 2011

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Past Due: Radio 168 – Should We Repair Or Replace The Car?

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Jane and Bill wrote in this week in the midst of an all-too-familiar conundrum: “Should we shell out the money to repair an aging vehicle, or throw in the towel and buy a new one?”

Right now, they have a large, four-wheeled paperweight in the driveway that requires about $1,500 worth of repairs to make it road ready again. They’re concerned that spending that kind of cash on repairs – money that has to come from the emergency fund because they haven’t been saving for ongoing vehicle expenses – will be a waste. Especially if they can use it toward a new, more reliable vehicle.

Today we discussed:

1) The two typical reactions for most people in this situation: A) Put the repairs on a credit card, B) Go buy a brand new car.

2) How to calculate your true ongoing vehicle expenses (covering everything from tires, brakes, batteries, wiper blades, filters, and alternators), and how to save for them every month in a clean, easy way.

3) The rule-of-thumb (and the exception to the rule) that I use when determining whether it makes sense to bite the bullet and repair an aging car, and when to move on to greener highways.

Cars are typically the largest purchases we make outside of our homes. You have to do your due diligence to make a wise decision on this issue in order to avoid car accidents of financial proportions!

If you have a specific question, I’d be happy to answer it and further cultivate the wisdom of the Past Due Radio masses. The experiences of our listener base provide plenty of insight we all can learn from; don’t hesitate to ask – I’m happy to help!

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