Friday, July 25, 2014

Cutting Costs and Doing What's Right for our Family

Have you ever owned a car that you absolutely loved but knew it was in the best interest for you and your family to get rid of it and go with something cheaper?  Not only has that happened once to us, it's actually happened twice.  No, its not the end of the world and yes we are happy with our decision, but sometimes it's always nice to think about those cars with all those nice extras and comfort that we use to have.  :) 

Back in 2009 when Andy and I started dating, he had a 2007 bright red SRT8 Charger.  HE LOVED THIS CAR!  Only problem with the car was, the payment!  I think he was paying around $600 a month in car payments for this car.  This was fine when he was living at home with his parents. When we decided that we wanted to move in together, Andy decided that he could not keep his beloved Charger.  He went to the Kia dealership in February and purchased a 2010 Kia Forte Koup.  I didn't have much say in the car because we were really still in the new phase of a relationship and to be honest, it was still a nice car.  For him to get rid of his Charger to get a Kia which was way cheaper in payments, cheaper in insurance, and cheaper in gas, really showed me that he was ready to settle down and move in with me.  I still feel guilty every once in a while that he gave that car up for me, but he always reassures me that its OK.  

July of 2012 we decided to trade in my 2006 Scion TC (that was paid off) because it had over 100,000 miles on it and we really needed a car with 4 doors.  I had LOVED the Kia Optima's and we decided to pull the trigger and purchase one.  Not only did I have to have all of the fancy options in the car; heated and cooled seats, leather seats, dual temperature zones, heated back seats, bluetooth, sunroof, etc, but I also wanted the bright blue color.  You know the top of the line Kia Optima!  LOL!   I LOVED the car except for the car payments.  We could afford the payments but knew that something had to give once we were pregnant and knew daycare costs were coming.

May of 2014 Andy was trying to figure out ways to save us money.  We cut his cell phone bill down, we cut out the gym memberships (we weren't using them anyways), we cut back on frivolous spending and then we thought about our car payment.  The Kia Forte Koup is paid off but it is only 2 doors.  The Kia Optima was still being paid on and had a good 4 years to go on the loan.  We knew that if we could trade in the car for a used car, we could lower our payments and save that way.  We took the Optima in and had an estimate on how much we could get for it (we also Kelly Blue Booked it before hand) and then was offered a number.  We test drove a used 2012 black Toyota Prius with 33,000 miles on it.  We liked the car and even sat down and started figuring out numbers.  Andy said the decision was totally up to me and something told me that night to not do it.  So we walked.  We did some more research and found out that we could get a brand new Toyota Prius for $25 more a month in payments (from the used price, we were saving $75 a month in payments on a new Prius) and get 0% interest financing.  We would also get the 10 year warranty on the car (since the warranty on the battery in the hybrid made me the most nervous).  I emailed the sales guy with the exact VIN # of the car I was interested in.  I once again got to pick the color of the car and I reallllllly wanted the Blizzard Pearl color with grey interior, its basically white with sparkles in the paint.  He came back with a price for us and we spent several days deciding if we should go for it or not.  

That Saturday I decided to finally pull the trigger and lets go for it!  We decided to go to a couple more dealerships to see if they could get us a better price.  The first dealership is located off a really busy road but once you pulled into their parking lot and the lots of cars, you realized how HUGE the place was!  I drove back to the Prius' and I did not see a white one. They had a TON of Prius' but not the one I wanted. I was considering a silver color but Andy knew I wouldn't be happy in the end with a silver one.  We decided to leave since they didn't even have the car we wanted.  The next dealership we drove to they were busy but had the white Prius that I wanted.  Someone introduced themselves to us and said they would be with us as soon as they could.  While waiting Andy asked if I would like to go back to the original dealership.  I said yes because I really liked our sales guy and I knew he was working that day. This dealership was SO busy!  We saw our sales guy who was super busy and someone asked if we would like some help.  I gave the sales guy the exact VIN # from the email and asked if we could test drive the car.  They had it and away we drove.  The car had 2 miles on it. We got back to the dealership and found our sales guy and said we were ready to trade in the Optima and get the white Prius from the email.  He went over to the managers to get approval and of course they were not happy with the deal.  They were going to purchase the Optima $2000 over what Kelly Blue Books suggests on the car.  Our sales guy came back and said the problem with the deal with that the white color is a "premium" color and it will cost us an extra $350.  I said explain that's fine but when I emailed you the VIN # of that exact car out there it is the white one and nothing was said about the premium color cost.  We had them there.  :) 

An hour later we were learning a bit more about the car and away we drove our brand new 2014 Prius off of the lot.  Yes this car is pretty basic, there is no fun sunroof or leather seats, there is no heated seats or even cooled seats.  But what it does have is AMAZING gas mileage!  We have been averaging around 52-55 miles to a gallon since we drove it off the lot. It's a blast to drive and is even like a game to see just how high we can get the gas mileage. We also received 0% interest financing and a full warranty on the car that lasts 10 years!  The warranty on the battery alone is 8 years.  I can handle that!

Andy test driving the Prius and asking, 
"Are you sure you want to do this?"

Sitting in the salesman office, waiting on the managers

My last ever photo of the Optima

The inside of the Prius

First selfie in the Prius!

So in all, our decision was the best one for our family.  If you are looking for a car that will sip gas and is fun to drive, I highly suggest the Toyota Prius!

 photo greysignature_zps937d4ad0.png


Jen said...

You guys did the right thing and I commend you for doing it. :)

Linnea said...

I am glad you like the Prius! And totally understand where you are coming from. We got rid of a truck in exchange for a car. Though my husband would rather the truck, it's just such a waste on gas since we both commute!

Post a Comment