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My Car Battery Died and the AAA Replacement was Cheaper Than AutoZone!

I posted this on Facebook last Friday and figured I should share here too!!!  🙂 — If you have AAA and your car battery needs to be replaced, it may be cheaper to go through AAA than doing it yourself at AutoZone or parts places like that! Not a Great Morning My car battery decided to call it quits on me overnight.  I called AAA for a jump since I was stuck in our garage and can’t easily jump my Fit with our Prius.  Plus, I was just truly hoping it was the battery and not my alternator or something. The truck that AAA routed over arrived in about 30 minutes.  My battery tested as needing to be replaced even though it started after the jump (I was so happy it was “just” the battery). AAA Wins So what was the AAA price for replacing a battery that has a 3 year full warranty and an additional 3 year discounted warranty?  $136.14 total with everything. What was AutoZone’s price for a 2013 Honda Fit battery with a 3 year warranty and additional 2 year discounted warranty? $169.99 plus taxes and a disposal fee. So I saved $40-$50 by staying at … Read more

Our New Car Streak Continues…

I’ll file this post in the category “because having a baby isn’t expensive enough”… Know how I mentioned that my husband and I prefer to buy new or nearly new cars, ride them into the ground, and start over?  Well, I might not have been crystal clear that our definition of “riding them into the ground” is a bit lazy.  We like to ride them for 9-10 years and move on when the first big repair pops up so we don’t have to handle the little car errands that tend to happen in a vehicle’s “second life”.  My Car For example, my 2005 Chevy Aveo only had 63,000 miles on it in 2014 when I sold it, but it was going to need a new engine in a year or two because of how crappily that car was made.  I sold it on Craigslist for $3400 and bought a new 2013 Honda Fit for $16,400 drive out on a 5 year loan at 0.9% (no money down).  I still have 13 payments or so left on it.  Our savings accounts are making 1% by themselves, so I don’t feel the need to rush on paying off the remaining loan. Hubby’s … Read more

Let’s Whine About Insurance Costs!

It’s that time of year for us again – most of our insurance policies are up for renewal.  I cringe every time I pay one of the bills, and yet I know that we’re actually getting fair renewal rates. How do I know?  I shop around every couple of years or when there is a significant jump in cost.  AND I talk a lot about everything to everybody, so I usually have a good idea of what is being paid by others. So chime in below so we can all keep up on the going rates in our own regions.  I’m starting with our most costly out-of-pocket coverage and working my way down.  Knowledge is power…knowledge of costs is the power to save money! Health Care Coverage We don’t technically have health insurance.  We joined Liberty Healthshare in 2016, which is a health cost sharing group.  It’s not actually insurance, but they work similarly.  They don’t guarantee coverage, have a maximum coverage amount of $1,000,000 per incident, and they don’t cover pre-existing conditions fully for the first few years. But they let us join, cost WAY less than our previous health insurance ($299 a month instead of $570+), and have … Read more

Tesla in Our Future?

My Honda Fit is about 3 years old and has 50,000 miles on it.  I have high hopes for it to last at least another 100,000-150,000 miles without huge repairs.  BUT hubby’s 2007 Prius has 165,000+ miles on it and all of those small end-of-life issues are slowly popping up like oil leaks.  Prius Prime? Until this year, we knew that Len’s next car would be a Prius.  He loves his Prius.  And we thought the next one would most likely be the Prius Prime, which we have been checking out on and specific dealer sites (it’s running about $30,000 around Texas).  It has more cameras, can go up to 600 miles on one tank, and gets 53-55 miles per gallon. Tesla? But now we’ve heard about the new Tesla – self-driving, electric, and will be available for about $35,000.  It could be worth an extra $4,000-$9,000 to us in order to own a self-driving car that will go 250+ miles without needing to be charged.  You just plug in your destination address like you do with your personal GPS and the car takes you there.  That’s simply magical. Our Tesla Hesitations We both are a little hesitant to jump into … Read more

The Uber Car Lease Program Sucks – How to Escape

Did you see the article about the pregnant lady who was driven into further debt by leasing a car from Uber?  One of my friends actually just lived through an Uber lease experience, and it is truly crappy.  $180 a week for leasing a car. THAT’S $720 A MONTH FOR A CAR LEASE! WHY??? Why did my friend or the pregnant lady in the article take on a super expensive lease like this to start with?  Because my friend’s credit is bad, she only had stressful experiences with car buying, and Uber made it easy. But buying a car, hell, even leasing a car regularly, would have been so much cheaper even with bad credit! How to Escape an Uber Lease If you ever thought about leasing a car through Uber, DON’T. If you already have, here are a few steps I’d suggest taking right now: Get it through your head that you are getting screwed in a very not-fun way. A cheap Uber lease is $180 a week…that’s $720 a month.  $720 a month for a regular car!!! Let’s say you don’t have the cash to buy a used car cheap off of someone.  Even with not stellar credit and no down payment, … Read more

Complete 10 Step Guide – How to Sell a Car on Craigslist

Ah Craigslist! It's an excellent place to buy things, but I've never thought about using it to sell my car before. These ten easy steps tell you exactly how to sell your car on craigslist and put some cash back into your pocket without getting scammed.

Long time readers may remember my first post about selling my car on Craigslist.  Well, in my ongoing effort to make this site better for you, I fleshed it WAY out and created a complete 10 step guide!  I hope this makes selling your car on Craigslist EXTREMELY easy!!!  No reason to lose thousands at the dealerships! In 2008, my husband bought his 2007 Toyota Prius and needed to sell his 2003 Hyundai Sonata.  The dealership only offered us $2000 to trade it in, so I sold it myself on Craigslist for $4800.  Yay!  In 2014, I bought my 2013 Honda Fit and needed to sell my 2005 Chevy Aveo.  The dealership once again offered me $2000, so I sold it on Craigslist for $3400.  Woot! To summarize, dealerships always offer way less than your car is worth.  If you have the title, sell your car way more on Craigslist.  Plus, save a ton of time since I’ve already done it twice – just follow the steps below! 10 Steps to Sell Your Car on Craigslist: 1.  Determine the Value of Your Vehicle Check out these sites to set your price: Kelley Blue Book Edmunds Comparables on Craigslist Add at least 10-15%  (I list mine 25-35% higher … Read more

The Pros and Cons of a Prius – From an Owner’s Mouth

We originally bought our used 2007 Toyota Prius in early 2008 when gas prices were reaching $4 a gallon here in Houston, TX and there was a 200 person waiting list for a new Prius. Long story short, they wanted $32,000 for a new Prius or $27,000 for a used 2007 Prius with 30,000 miles on it already. After a few hours of negotiation, we settled at $21,500 for the 2007 model. With financing at 4% and everything else, we ended up paying it off early and put in a total of $23,400. (Slightly unrelated, but if you own a Prius, these trash cans seem to be a favorite accessory that fits in the doors…) In December 2011, I posted about our Prius since they were getting popular. I wanted to check in again now that our Prius is 9 years old and just hit 155,000 miles. Prius Pros It still makes 44-47 miles per gallon on road trips and 47-52 miles per gallon with in-city driving. Yep, that seems backwards but it isn’t since the breaking system is part of the battery re-charging process. It still has great amount of storage space for us. It regularly carries 4 men and their reffing … Read more