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Consider Selling Your Car & Going Car-less

Americans have a love affair with their automobiles. One of the first ways people want to show off their economic status is through buying a nice vehicle. Even the poorest college student is likely to have a car, though it may be a bit worse for wear. In fact, “Americans own an average of 2.28 vehicles per household, and more than 35 percent of households own three or more cars” (New York Times [3]).

Surviving in America without a car is counterculture and can make life difficult, especially if you live in the suburbs or the country. However, there are times selling your car might be just the right thing to do.

How Much Can You Save Without a Car?

AAA estimates that it costs $8,100 a year to own a car, according to the New York Times [3]. How much getting rid of a car can save you depends on your personal situation. However, most people pay for gas, insurance, repairs, maintenance, car payments, and license fees.

We are already a one car family, and our car is completely paid off, but we have still thought of selling it to get out of student loan debt faster. This is how much we would save a year if we got rid of our car, and we are a conservative example:

(Keep in mind, this expense would be significantly higher if we had a car payment as many Americans do.)

We would not be able to reap all of the savings because we would still need to get around with a vehicle occasionally, so we would have to take a transportation alternative. Still, even if we rented a car once or twice a month, it wouldn’t cost us more than $200 per month, so we would still save at least $219 a month.

Transportation Alternatives

The idea of giving up your car may be a bit scary, but there are plenty of alternatives.

Considering getting rid of your car can be a scary thought. There is no doubt that cars make life easier and life can be inconvenient with only one, or none at all. However, there are significant savings if you can break the attachment to your car.

Would you consider selling your car? Why or why not?

(Photo: franganillo [4])