Archive for the ‘Car’ Category

I have.

When I signed my credit card receipt for $354 worth of TLC at my mechanic’s.

Then I drove home in my steam-free car. 🙂

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Loyal AAA customer

Because AAA is worth every penny of the yearly $47 dues when your car starts STEAMING as you drive down a crowded boulevard.

Every. Single. Penny.

Tomorrow I’m driving my car getting it towed to the mechanic’s. I really hope my engine is not damaged and the total cost of the repairs will be manageable.

I have a feeling there will be a lot of repairs coming up…


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Bit the bullet, canceled coverage

I’ve decided to cancel collision and comprehensive coverage on my car. This move reduces 6-month premium from ~$620 to ~$450.

Even though having the insurance made me feel safe, the real purpose of insurance is to protect me against costs I cannot shoulder. My cash reserves, coupled with the actual cash value of my car, meant that comprehensive/collison coverage didn’t make much sense. I already had a high deductible of $1,000.

I can get a reasonably reliable late-90s Honda for $5,000 to $6,000, so I think I’ll be okay.

As for liability coverage, I am maintaining 50/100/50 coverage ($50k per person, $100k per accident, $50k property). Here’s hoping that I’ll never have to use it.

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How to spend $500+ in one go

Two words: car repair.

My trusted mechanic had informed me of this expense a couple months ago, so while I’m not panicked about this expense, it’s still a big chunk of change. This repair isn’t urgent, so I can probably put it off for a couple of months, but I know that it’s important to take care of my car properly.

At least this bout of repairs will get me into 2009.

This repair, however, does raise the question:

1. At what point should I consider buying another car? The KKB value of my current vehicle is at around $3,500-$4,000. In my first year of ownership, I’ve spent over $1,000 (or 1/3 to 1/4 of the car’s value) on repairs and routine maintenance. I won’t buy a new car as long as this one continues to run reliably. After all, Mom is driving a 1993 Civic with no air conditioning (granted, she never takes it on the freeway). I’m not as frugal as Mom, but still.

2. Should I continue to pay for collison and comprehensive coverage (with a $1,000 deductible) on this car? By only having liability insurance, I can save around $500 a year.

So much to think about.

Non-car-related tip: Sephora is having their Annual Friends & Family Sale online, where you can get 20% off everything by using the code FF2008. Unfortunately, today’s the last day. So hurry if you have something you wanted from the Mecca of All Beauty Products. Hat tip to C.C.

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The gas prices are falling down…

Falling down, falling down
The gas prices are falling down
My bad economy.

Like my new twist on an old classic? I filled up my tank today for $2.77 a gallon. Cannot remember the last time that gas was so cheap – I would rejoice, but as an economist said, falling gas prices is like losing weight because of a parasitic illness.

Had delicious fish tacos for lunch (CB treated, and yes, I imagine that in an unemployed scenario he definitely would buy me lunch sometimes, right?). Thank heavens for hole-in-the-wall restaurants with no ambience but can’t-beat prices and AWESOME food!

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$3.99 per gallon

Never thought I’d see the day.

I think the most I’ve paid for gas is around $4.59 / gallon, and the cheapest is around… $2-something a couple years back?

Are you seeing some relief at the pump?

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New reality

Filled up the tank today for $4.47 / gallon. Was very, very pleased.

How are gas prices in your neck of the woods?

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Gas. Hurts.

For the month of May I spent over $200 on gas. This month, on top of the gas expenditures, I have to take my car in the shop for an oil change and minor repairs (~$120?).

Like most Californians, I’ve adjusted (slowly and reluctantly) to the painful reality of increasing gas prices. I am mentally preparing myself for $5/gallon by the end of the summer.

What can I cut? Well, the first answer is… gas. But, I can’t take public transportation to work, and on the weekends, I just want to go where I want to go! I figure I usually drive around 150 miles a week, which for my area really isn’t that much at all.

I’m guessing the first things to go would be things I’ve considered: no more trips to Ross, fewer dinners out, fewer groceries. Fortunately, Mom keeps me very well-fed by giving me loads of frozen and prepared food every time I go home. Yes, I am blessed. No, I don’t feel like a mooch. Is that bad?

Anyhow, I am hoping that 1. my rent won’t go up, and 2. my car stays “healthy”, and 3. I have more self-control over spending!

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Indiana Jones!

Saw it this weekend. Did you like?

More movies I’m excited about:
Sex and the City
The Dark Knight

By the way, I get $7.50 AMC or Regal Entertainment tickets at Costco (good any time, anywhere… except in Manhattan where I believe there is a $1.50 surcharge), and they have helped me to keep my movie costs down. The theater closest to my home charges $12 for an evening ticket!

Oh, and this weekend, I just filled up my car for $4.05 / gallon. I guess this is only a hint of things to come.

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Silly, silly me.

Only 2 months ago, I was filling up for less than $3.50 a gallon. Now the gas in my area has shot up to $3.85+, and on the way home I saw some stations with $3.99/gal. (I use regular unleaded).

I think I can handle $4/gal gas (but the pain… the pain!). But $5 a gallon? $6? Who knows how high gas can go. The upshot? Maybe people will start driving less, so… the roads will be clearer!

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