Yup, all that waiting and savings has finally paid off.
On Saturday, I traded in my paid off 1999 car and bought a nused (2006) car. Whoo-hoo!! Even better, I paid cash (well, really check) for the nused car. Whoo-hoo!!
I had saved $17,000 for the nused car as one of our 2008 savings goals. I also assumed I would get a couple of thousand dollars for my old car. And my budget for the car was $20,000. We've been researching 3 cars for the past six months so we had a good sense of how much our target cars should cost.
On Saturday, we decided to test drive the three cars we were interested in. The car was below budget $19,500 and was a good price for the year and the mileage. So we decided to buy it! We also decided to trade in my old car at the dealership. While I could have gotten a bit more for my old car if we sold it ourselves we would have to sell it ourselves.
It was a great experience, no discussion of monthly payments, interest rate, etc. While the finance guy asked why I would pay cash for a depreciating asset, I asked why would I pay interest on a depreciating asset. I told the finance guy, if he gave me a 0% loan I would be happy to finance the car. You can guess his response. I wrote a check and drove the car home.