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Okay, I'm sure there are plenty of one car families out there, so I need some advice, encouragement.<br>
I'm trying to sell my car so we can save some money (insurance, gas, maitenance, etc.), but now that it's such a real concept I'm getting nervous. I've gotten so used to having the freedom to drive to the park, get groceries, or even just get out of the house when DS and I are getting too bored at home. I know it'll be a better choice for our family, it'll save some gas, a little bit of our breathable air, etc. but I'm so used to my freedom!<br>
We live in an area where we can't walk to anything we need, like groceries or a park. I take my 16 month DS on walks around our block, but won't go outside our one block neighbourhood because it's a very curvy road with no shoulder at all, much less sidewalk and people drive so fast and dangerously on that road....then the next road is a divided highway.<br>
I can get my DH's truck anyday but he leaves for work at 5:45am, so I'd have to get my DS up before then and he usually sleeps until at least 7.<br>
I guess I need some encouragement and I'd love to hear how often others get out of the house and what you do when it's a 1 car family.<br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">:
 

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I would advise you not to do it.<br><br>
You will be socially isolating yourself and your son. You could be setting yourself up for serious frustration and depression. It will be basically taking all the spontaneity of your life outside the home - you won't be able to perk things up, or relieve restless-toddler pressure, by going anywhere, without laying on yourself the extra burden of getting up at 5:30 to take your husband to work. And what if something comes up in the middle of the day?<br><br>
I have done the no car thing for years before I was able to get one, and I would be willing to give up a lot of other stuff before I went back to no car. If you were in an urban environment that would be one thing. You wouldn't be giving up all your options to actually go anywhere.<br><br>
For your environmental/gas cost concerns, just don't drive unnecessarily. Combine errands. Whoever buys it will probably drive more than you. How much gas will be consumed by doing your husband's commute twice each way when you take the truck? Also, most trucks are rated very poorly for child safety.
 

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We did the one car thing for 2 years. DS was born when we did it and we did it until he was about 18 months old. It was hard but you can do it. You will save a lot of money. Truthfully I think we saved more that way too because I couldn't go out and buy stuff on a whim. I really had to wait until i had the car to go run errands and such. We just bought another car and it is hard to pay for another auto insurance and pay for gas and upkeep. Some days having one car feels impossible and you will get frustrated, but I think it is worth it if you can do it for a while. Try it for a year or 6 months... set a benchmark at least. If you have to, you can always get a cheap used car down the road. Good luck!<br><br>
PS -- Keep the car seat at home or get an extra one, then hitch a ride wtih a friend when they go to the park/mall/zoo or whatever. Your friends will like the company and you can give them a couple bucks for gas.
 

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We love being a one-car family but my caveat is that we live within walking distance to a lot of places and my husband often takes the bus to/from work if we need the car. I agree with the PP that there can be advantages to having to plan for your outings because you really utilize them more if you can't just hop in the car at any given moment.<br><br>
I know it's a huge drag to wake up the little guy to take your DH to work but you might even develop a little routine with that too- the novelty of wearing jammies in the car, coming home and having breakfast together, then maybe a short morning nap before you start your day?<br><br>
It is a huge financial savings and a big gift to be giving the environment as well. Every time it feels like an inconvenience you can feel good knowing that you're leaving the world a little cleaner for your son to enjoy as he grows.
 

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We became a one-car family a year or so ago and I'm very happy with our decision. We cut our insurance by half and we plan our outings more carefully, so there's been a huge drop in the amount of money we spend on gas. The car we sold was the gas-guzzler, so we're down to about $60/month on gas these days.<br><br>
I'm fortunate in that I'm the one who has the car most days. DH often takes the bus to work and now that it's nice he's biking again. We've also done the shuffle where I drop him off and/or pick him up, but it's fairly manageable. It's also taken some adjustment when one of us goes out of town for a day or weekend, but we've so far been able to hitch rides or borrow a vehicle.
 

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We are trying to go to one car too but its my dh who will be the one without the car. He can walk to work and we usually pick him up in the evening.<br><br>
I honestly would be nervous too if I wasn't in walking distance to most things. I can walk to some things but I definitely rely on the car to get to the store and I don't like going on the weekend when I could be spending the time with dh. I would also worry, like the pp said, about isolation, etc if you can't get out. Do you have good public transit-is that an option for getting to the park or the store?<br><br>
Could you downgrade your car-still save some money but still have a car? The car we are keeping is a 1990 Corolla-cheap on gas, cheap to insure but really reliable.
 

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We've only ever had one car. I didn't own a car when dh and I got together and we've only ever had one car at a time since. I've done this in areas where I can't walk and where I can. It's definatly doable but it will take some adjustment.<br><br>
It there public transport near you? I used the bus a lot when I lived in an area I couldn't walk much in. Now I can walk to the park or the store but there are no buses.<br><br>
It might be a good idea to keep the carseat out of the truck unless you are going to be using it or get a second one. That way if you want to go with a friend in their car you have the carseat ready. Otherwise you have to plan ahead.<br><br>
If there is public transport can your dh use it to get to work some of the time? Or maybe carpool? That way he could leave you the truck on days when you need it without waking up ds so early.
 

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We've been a one car family since right after ds was born 3 years ago. I HATE it. We do it because it is a good financial decision for us, but I can't wait until we can get a second car. We live in an area where I can walk to get groceries, and we can walk to the park or library - but where we live - we literally have only those 3 places to go - it's a very small town about 30 miles away from everything. I hate not being able to take the kids someplace on a whim.<br><br>
I also hate the fact (and am pretty nervous too) that in the event of an emergency, I'm basically SOL. I'm not referring to an emergency at home - for instance, my mom suffered a major stroke a few years ago - lucky for me (I guess) it happened at night when we were both home. If it happened during the day, I would have not had any way of getting there.<br><br>
And of course, I could have the car whenever I want it, but it's a major PITA to get the kids up and out the door just to drive DH to work (30 miles away) and back again so we can have the car for basically 6 hours before we have to drive the 30 miles to pick him up at the end of the day.<br><br>
So, my advice is to keep the second car.
 

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We currently have one car. I drove DH to work the last 2 days b/c of appoinmenta, he drove it today and I needed it! Luckily they just started a bus service in my town, and I am three blocks from a pickup <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> They also have a nice feature that if you know you will want to a day in advance (say for an appt.) you can have them add a stop for you as long as you are less than 3/4 mile from the original route. Is there any public transit where you live? Mine only cost a dollar for an all day pass, and they have discount tickets too! HTH!
 

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We became a one-car family last year and it's been working out well. It's working out well because *I* keep the car. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/lol.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="lol"><br><br>
DH carpools to work with coworkers and we give them gas money. A PP posted about isolation and that's what would have happened if he took the car to work every day. We have pretty busy days here and we like it that way -- losing transportation would have killed that and I would have gone stark raving mad.
 

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We are a one-car family, but we live in an urban area well within walking distance of parks, the library, shopping, the gym...and a bus stop with a bus that could take us downtown in fifteen minutes.<br><br>
In that situation, it is easy to be a one-car family.<br><br>
In your situation....I don't think I could do it. Especially since you can't walk anywhere. You will be so isolated.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Unfortunately we don't have any public transport here and I have absolutely no friends within an hour. I hardly ever see them anyway. Pretty much my life is home, grocery shopping and days when we get out to thrift shop, go to the park, etc. so we can get a break from home. So I'm already isolated. Luckily DH works about 10 minutes away so if there were an emergency he wouldn't be far and can usually leave work if he needs to at any time.<br>
I'm still mulling this all over and I really appreciate all the comments and advice, keep 'em coming!
 

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We are a one car family and I have no problem with it because we live within walking distance to quite a few things. My Dh also works about ten minutes away and I can have the car whenever I want to. You mentioned that your Dh works close by as well. One thing that works for us is if I don't want to get ds up and out the door early to have the car for the day, dh comes home for lunch, I drop him back off and I have the car for the rest of the afternoon. Is this an option for you? One car is an adjustment and I don't know if I could do it if we didn't have so many things within walking distance. Good luck!
 

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I wouldnt do it.<br><br>
I have needed it in emergencies.<br><br>
When one car needs work done it nice to have another car to fall back on.<br><br>
It nice not to be tied to the house.
 

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In my first marriage, we had one car for years, until I went back to college when our dd was five.<br><br>
My xh was in the military and I had to get up reeeeaaalllllly early and bundle up the baby and drive him to base if I wanted to get the car for the day. But I did. We survived. If you think it will help financially, by all means, you can make it work! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile">
 

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We have always been a 1 car family.<br>
It can be isolating if there isn't anywhere to walk/bike to nearby.<br>
We lived out in the country recently in that situation for 2 years. Dd and I got in touch with nature around our house most days since there was no where to walk to. We had an inflatible pool at our house in summer. We had snow to play with in winter. Dd loved just walking around discovering things. Kids don't always need a playground to be entertained. We did errands/outings on evenings or weekends or whenever dh had a day off. We really enjoyed doing those things as a family. As long as I got out at least 1 day a week I didn't feel too isolated.<br>
Now we still have 1 car but live withing walking distance of some places.<br>
I think the suggestion that maybe your dh could come home for lunch and you could have the car the rest of the day is good. If you had to get your ds up early some days I'm sure he'd adjust to it. Also, does your dh have someone he could car pool to work with a few days a week? Could you get a bike?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I really like the idea of him coming home for lunch, if the car sells we'll probably do that one.<br>
Plus I love the idea of getting a bike, and I'd be willing to bike to the store, etc. (which is quite a ways) but I'd be crossing a 4 lane, divided highway to get anywhere and most of the roads are curvy, with no sidewalk or even shoulder and people drive really fast on these roads.<br>
But if I did get a bike, what would I do with my 16 month old? Anyone reccomend any contraptions or things I could use to bike with him?
 

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We have no car.<br><br>
We live in a suburb, where nothing is within walking distance. Like in your case, most of the roads have no sidewalks or shoulders, are very curvy, and people drive really fast.<br><br>
Luckily, we have public transportation if I need to get anywhere. In an emergency, I can call car service, but that is expensive.<br><br>
In your situation, I think you probably need the second car. Can you reduce insurance costs by changing the terms of your policy? For example, my parents have more cars than they need, but keep the insurance cost down by having a policy that only will repair things as far as needed to make the car FUNCTION, so no cosmetic repairs.
 

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We got rid of my car because we REALLY could not afford to keep it, as in it would have been repo'd. If you can afford to keep it, then keep it. I HATE having one car. Being trapped in the house has done murderous things to my mental health. I know this isn't very encouraging but I really think its a dumb idea if you can honestly afford the car. We too live in an area where we can't just walk to the grocery store, etc...Being a SAHM is hard enough. Please do not sacrifice your freedom for a few extra dollars. Its worth it to be able to go places as you please.
 

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<div>Originally Posted by <strong>FiddleMama</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/7896867"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">It is a huge financial savings and a big gift to be giving the environment as well. Every time it feels like an inconvenience you can feel good knowing that you're leaving the world a little cleaner for your son to enjoy as he grows.</div>
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It is not necessarily a gift for the environment. I also live as a one car household and I say don't do it as long as you can not walk anywhere (or DH can't walk/bus/carpool to work).<br><br>
Currently, we make one additional RT to DH's school because I have to drop him off and pick him up. It has made me resentful (of my time spent) and I think about what that extra trip is doing to the environment *every day*. DH wouldn't be driving when he is at school so really we do more driving then strictly necessary.<br><br>
In two weeks we are moving to a place where DH can bike to school and I will be so much more happy about that situation. If I had to be stuck at home all the time, I would go nuts. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">:<br><br>
I would also not put DD in a bike trailer crossing a busy street. I have been hit by a car on my bike (in Boulder, CO, the biking capitol of the US) and that is way too dangerous to me. In fact, the reason DH can't bike to school right now is I won't let him (he would have to cross a 6 lane road to get there). There is a thread on the toddlers forum right now about carriers for bikes if you want recs.<br><br>
If you really, really need to move to 1 car and can't change living locations, I would see if DH could do without the car to get to work. Unless he needs the car for work, that would just be time spent with the car sitting there, no?
 
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