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Old 12-16-2012, 11:33 AM   #61
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Car-less for now , work pays for nearly all my transportation needs.

In a couple years though, plan on getting a 1-4 year old used car, with no more than 30k miles on it for 9-12% of my gross. With the extremely light driving I do, that will easily last me about 20-30 years. The next one after that I will have a lot more time to carefully buy, so I might get it at an auction, hopefully should be some nice used electric/gas combinations by then.
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Old 12-16-2012, 11:42 AM   #62
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We now have 3 cars. Two of them were our personal cars for commuting to work, and we bought them new and paid cash. As mentioned earlier, the 3rd car was bought as a toad to tow behind my RV, and as I expected to use it just for that, I bought it used.

My wife likes the toad so much that it is now her main car. Her big SUV has been sitting in the garage, and has but 27K miles for a 9-yr old car, as she has been retired for 6 years. I now have to remember to drive it on an errand once every month. Just came out to start up the engine, and could tell that the battery was a bit weak, judging from the engine cranking.

Well, that SUV will last for quite a while, sitting in the garage!
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Old 12-16-2012, 03:35 PM   #63
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In my younger days right out of college, I had to have the cherry red Iroc Z28 with the t tops and louver. Damn did I love that car and the girls I could catch with that. But after about 3 years of realizing almost half of my net income was going to that car whether by payments, gas, insurance, or taxes, I realized the thrill was gone. Now that I am at the point of my life where I can easily afford a brand new one, I ironically find that I have the oldest car I have ever had in my life. 11 years old with over 180k on it and wont consider trading until it doesn't run. I don't want the auto companies in my wallet, I don't want the insurance company in my wallet, and I don't want the government tax collector in my wallet. But to each his own. I certainly can't fault you as I once was like that, but if the allure to retire early starts to pull at you harder, be prepared to suddenly change your view point on what type of car you like!
Agreed. As I accumulate more $ - my cars look more like junkers. At some level it is fun driving a little "too close" to the nice shiny Mercedes and see the other driver get nervous. Heck, most high school students around here have nicer cars than we do!
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Old 12-16-2012, 04:33 PM   #64
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DW has an '09 Nissan Versa: bought new, low cost great mileage. I drive very little and had a 91 Caprice wagon I paid $650 for. Junked it after 6 years for $400. There's a VW I rebuilt as a toad and backup. It's worth 3x what I have in it. Our mutual retirement present was our new truck and truck camper. Most I ever paid for a vehicle, but had the money saved. In June we begin our extended travels.

Used to want a Ferrari / Lamborghina. I could pay cash for one now, but no longer it. Funny, ain't it?
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Old 12-16-2012, 04:47 PM   #65
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To answer your first question, I spent ~ 20% of my gross annual on a new Subaru forester (replacing a 13 year old Honda CRV) last year. I plan to keep it for 10 years at least.

The fact that you choose to spend 50% of your annual on a Lexus is your choice, as you said. The issue with this is less of about the car and more about setting up a taste for luxury in all aspects of life (e.g. fly first class vs. coach, fancy hotels vs. motel 6, designer clothes vs. average threads....). If you can keep the rest of these areas in check and really just want a nice car, then as long as you maintain/keep if for years, this should not be much of an issue, though you will be working longer as you said. That may feel ok now in your late 20's, but when you get a little longer in the tooth that choice may not feel as good. And its really hard to go from driving a Lexus to a Toyota later in life...I personally feel like its better to keep the cars/homes/toys reasonable when you're younger; when you're older and closer to FIRE, you can start to treat yourself more. To me, that is what FIRE is about - setting up your life so that is easier for you when you are older, and that means delaying on some wants from time to time.

[QUOTE=zxcvlkj;1259260]I figured 40s is out of the question. push back to 50s. still saving my 10%.

I think this is the portion that you would want to benchmark. I think most people that FIRE save far more than this (me included - ~30-35%, and I make a comfortable six figure income).
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Old 12-16-2012, 05:26 PM   #66
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I spent nearly 40% for my first car when I was a few months into my first professional job. I don't think I ever spent more than 25% again. More important to my FIRE goal, I learned to hang onto cars a lot longer. 8 years on my current one with no plans to buy another. 50% every 10 years is a lot different than 50% every 3 years.
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Old 12-16-2012, 05:50 PM   #67
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I been advised I spent too much on my car and curious what people on this board have spent on cars.

I spent approx 50% of my gross on a Lexus.

People here have advised me to downgrade based on my goal to retire young. After driving a Lexus I still plan on sticking with luxury cars. This will delay my goal. But it is a personal choice.
I'm 54 and will be retiring very soon. I've always liked my cars and spent too much on them over the years. I later learned it was much easier to have nice cars by buying them from individuals as 1-3 year old used cars. I have bought many cars this way and saved a lot of cash. Once, I bought a BMW 3 series that one year old and had 7,000 miles on it for about 60% of the original sticker price. My wife loved that car and drove it for 6 years. Buying brand news cars really is an extravagance but it all depends on where your priorities are.
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Old 12-16-2012, 08:50 PM   #68
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Since this is the "Young Dreamers" section, I'll brag on my DS (college senior). Our '99 Honda Accord is his car. His high school best friend got a Mustang convertible when he was 16 and an Audi TT convertible when he graduated college recently. DS and friend were together when I asked DS how long he expected to keep the Accord. I figured he would say "long enough to save up for a down payment on a new car". But he said "this is good for me". To his credit, friend with new car didn't rag on him. I think we raised an LBYM son!
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Old 12-16-2012, 11:48 PM   #69
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I drive a Mercedes (it took me 6 decades to get it) but I bought it used with low miles, one owner and fully warranted. I wanted to up my credit score so I took out a loan from MB Financial with 4.99%. When I found out 17 months later it was for 6 years I nearly had a heart attack. Needless to say, I paid it off in 18 months. I can't stand making monthly payments. But it has been an excellent car and I intend to drive it for many years.

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Old 12-17-2012, 12:12 AM   #70
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I drive an Audi that cost about 44% of my then-income (net). That was almost 10 years ago and it now has 60k miles on it; I don't regret it, especially when I'm downshifting as I merge onto a highway or when I'm taking curves and the car "rides the rails."

My next car will be something far cheaper or maybe none at all.

Also, saving 10% won't cut it. You need to get that much higher in order to retire at 60, let alone 50.
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Old 12-17-2012, 08:10 AM   #71
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I have a company car and DH drives app. 5ooo miles /year in our 12 year old Renault clio.

It looks like this one, only that it was in a hale storm 4 years ago and the insurance compensated its value. Now it looks like a golf ball but we do not care.
Von Privat kurzfristig abzugeben in Neuenhagen - auto24.de
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Old 12-17-2012, 08:33 AM   #72
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Europeans tend to treat cars more like appliances, and do not love their cars like Americans do.

Talk about hailstorm damage, my nephew's Audi was dented badly last year due to a freak storm. The insurance company paid for it to be repaired. As it was an expensive car, they sent a guy with a special touch who could tap out the dents from the inside. I did not see the car before the repair, but only afterwards. There was absolutely no hint that it was ever dented. There was no need to repaint either. Amazing!
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Old 12-17-2012, 11:22 AM   #73
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The 'rule of thumb' that I heard was 30% of salary for a car...

Our last car was 13%.... but, we will have to replace the SUV soon and that will be a big cost... maybe 30 to 35% of salary...
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Old 12-17-2012, 11:58 AM   #74
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Model of our cars?

"Paid for" ...

Salary? Ain't got no stinkin salary (living off our retirement investments) ...

BTW, my/DW's cars"? We paid cash. That can't be computed against any "salary" (retired or not)...

Our goal? To remain frugal (OK, cheap ).
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Old 12-17-2012, 04:47 PM   #75
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Model of our cars?

"Paid for" ...

Salary? Ain't got no stinkin salary (living off our retirement investments) ...

BTW, my/DW's cars"? We paid cash. That can't be computed against any "salary" (retired or not)...

Our goal? To remain frugal (OK, cheap ).
Where is that "debt rock?"
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Old 12-17-2012, 05:45 PM   #76
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When I lived in base housing, it was easy to tell who owned the cars. The officers cars were usually 8-10 years old, while the enlisted generally had nicer wheels, perhaps with aftermarket rims. The NCO's seemed to prefer the crew cab pickup trucks. At my first squadron, one of the department heads even told all the junior officers that we "needed to drive nicer cars," because the enlisted were making us look bad.
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Old 12-18-2012, 06:08 AM   #77
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Interesting thread. I wished I was a person that looked at cars as appliances! Unfortunately, gear head for as long as I can remember. In regard to Lexus, best cars we've ever owned. Wife currently drives an IS350 and mine is an LS430. These are our 3rd each. My latest toy is, bought 3 weeks ago, Lamborghini LP 550-2.

As I get older, 50 next month, finding moderation in everything and debt free is key. God willing, we plan to retire at 55.

Hope this helps.
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Old 12-18-2012, 09:44 AM   #78
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If one can afford luxury and fancy cars, why not enjoy them?

Affordability criteria varies with the individual, but the following is mine. I hate to see dents on my cars, unless they are older. So, if I get an expensive new car and a low-life opens his door too wide in a parking garage and puts a dent in my car door, I would get very upset. Call me OCD, but that would bother me. So, I want to be rich enough that I could just drive it straight to the dealer and trade it in for a new one. Yes, I would want to be so rich that I could still look at an expensive car as still just an appliance that I could just trade in for another.
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Old 12-18-2012, 10:00 AM   #79
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Call me OCD, but that would bother me.
I'm with you on this one.

I have an '05 Caddy SRX that is my daily driver (purchased off-lease on EBay Auto) and although I don't drive that much (15K since Jan '08, when I bought it, and it currently has 50k on the odometer), it's the car I use if I go to any parking lot, along with my volunteer service with the local Meals on Wheels organization.

My "sunday car" (e.g. the sun must be out and the roads dry before I use it) is an '02 Mustang GT vert (purchased new). It sits in the garage, a bit like a pampered pooch or kept woman (both expensive to keep ).

Only 19k on the odometer, but on that rare spring day - or warm summer night, I'm glad I have "her".

I guess for "us types", two vehicles make sense (regardless of cost). It's like having two girlfriends. One to take home to meet momma, and one that you hope that momma never meets ...
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Old 12-18-2012, 11:11 AM   #80
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When I lived in base housing, it was easy to tell who owned the cars. The officers cars were usually 8-10 years old, while the enlisted generally had nicer wheels, perhaps with aftermarket rims. The NCO's seemed to prefer the crew cab pickup trucks. At my first squadron, one of the department heads even told all the junior officers that we "needed to drive nicer cars," because the enlisted were making us look bad.
Once when our training command was seated in the all-hands auditorium, a few of the lieutenants started razzing one of their rank who'd just bought a $1500 Cannondale bicycle. He was a triathlete and felt that the bike would make him feel better a difference in his performance.

He responded: "I don't own a car. I don't have to pay for gas or insurance, either. My bicycle reflects my values, not my not my net worth. How much are you spending on your transportation?"

End of discussion.
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