A Doggle Chariot and Long Term Outlooks
July 14, 2011
Well. Now we’ve dunnit.
The situation: After setting the date for a car purchase in 2012, and swearing up and down that nothing was going to happen on that front until we had that settled, what happens? PiC finds a potential Doggle Chariot.
I was pretty frustrated with the thwarting of my financial plans. But then I decided that was a knee-jerk reason not to buy and self-centered to boot (my finances, my decisions) so I sat down with spreadsheets and crunched the numbers until I had a clearer view of where we both stand.
Financing was never an option, period. That’s not something I’m willing to compromise on – paying interest (unnecessarily) in order to defer payments means you can’t afford that purchase.
The Analysis: Considering our cash position, I didn’t really want to spend the money. [I know, when do I ever?] But the unwillingness was based on the fact that, if our finances were merged, our net worth would not be at a place that I would feel comfortable making a major purchase. But as we’re not married yet, the monies are not merged. And even if they were, discomfort or not, this purchase would not significantly hurt our big picture goals. True, it wouldn’t do us any favors for the year, and it will be a pain to juggle around cash for property taxes but, it wouldn’t actively put us in a bad position and I’ve also always been cash heavy so we wouldn’t be breaking CDs or other funds to pull this cash out.
From that perspective, if this was the right car, and if the seller accepted our offer, the amount could be under ten thousand dollars, paid in full, in cash, therefore not a financially disastrous decision.
We also don’t intend to carry three cars on the insurance so his car would have to be sold, and that would make up some of the purchase price.
Considering the wedding plans that aren’t coming along but would still need to be paid for at some point when it does come together, I was still on the fence, but agreed that we were in a position to at least look at the car in case it happened to be a well-maintained vehicle that was worth spending on earlier than originally planned.
Of course, the car was not only in great shape with low mileage, and much of the major maintenance had already been done on it early and the work checked out.
The Outcome: I should stop poopooing PiC’s Craigslist stalking, he managed to find the nicest people to buy a new car from. Not only did they accept a really good (for us) offer, they accommodated our needs for the various bits leading up to sale since we weren’t terribly close to each other and even had purchased road trip supplies for Doggle as gifts when the sale was finalized, knowing we were buying it for Doggle.
Now we’re able to have more than two people plus 1 dog per car ride, which is helpful. Most importantly, Doggle’s much more comfortable getting in and out of the Chariot now, and has more room to move around, although now you mostly only see his big head if you look in the rearview because he likes to be Right In The Middle. This is much better for his joints. He was always a bit scrabbly trying to get into my car and you could see him visibly heaving himself up into the backseat. Now he’s still leaping but it’s much more graceful and puts far less stress on his body.
My Realization: It’s still really hard for me to talk through major or minor financial decisions with adults and trust that they are open and willing and committed and going to make the right decisions. I can talk, but I can’t trust. It’s still an emotional imperative that I must be the one to make the decisions at the end of the day or suffer the consequences. Thanks, family. And I’ve always been hands-off with PiC’s finances, outside of sharing general (or specific if asked) information. This transition is a bit tough. But it’s something I’m working on.