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Keep or sell the 2nd car?


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My husband has started riding in a vanpool to commute to work. His car is now sitting in the garage unused, and we're trying to decide whether to hang onto it or sale it. It's not worth more than $1000, and I feel like it's not worth paying to keep it registered and insured when we're not using it. I like the idea of having a backup car in case of need, but our whole family doesn't fit...WWYD?

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If it is paid off, I would keep it especially if it is a good car that doesn't need any expensive repairs. It is not very often that we need a second car but it would sure be nice to have it when we need it. I have a 15 year old coming up that is really rooting for dad to get a sexy sports car (you know that she could drive). I don't think so. I told her that if we get a second car it going to be a Kia or Hyundi.

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My husband has started riding in a vanpool to commute to work. His car is now sitting in the garage unused, and we're trying to decide whether to hang onto it or sale it. It's not worth more than $1000, and I feel like it's not worth paying to keep it registered and insured when we're not using it. I like the idea of having a backup car in case of need, but our whole family doesn't fit...WWYD?

 

Do you have to keep it registered and insured if you're not driving it? If it's legal, I'd let it lapse and reactivate it all if you need it. I don't think I could give up a paid-for car unless it was a third car. Your DH could change jobs and need it and those teen (student driver) years sneak up on you.

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We did it. No regrets. We've been a one car family for two years now, by choice. Sold the paid off minivan that just sat unused for too long. Paid off a big chunk of debt, too. Love it!

 

Our mechanic provides a loaner when/if we need repairs. DH works from home or takes the car to clients' and we work around the kiddo's schedule. And we have no problem getting a rental should the need arise. It hasn't arisen yet.

 

The difference I see, though, is that you have a place to park the unused car. We did not, at least not conveniently. And you don't say what you'd do with the $1000 - if that amount would be significant in paying down debt, etc.

 

If it's not an issue to garage it, and the cash isn't significant... Then keeping it as a back up might make sense if you think DH will need it again.

 

I guess it's a lifestyle choice, in some ways.

 

For us, going to one car felt scary. Now it's liberating.

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We did it. No regrets. We've been a one car family for two years now, by choice. Sold the paid off minivan that just sat unused for too long. Paid off a big chunk of debt, too. Love it!

 

Our mechanic provides a loaner when/if we need repairs. DH works from home or takes the car to clients' and we work around the kiddo's schedule. And we have no problem getting a rental should the need arise. It hasn't arisen yet.

 

The difference I see, though, is that you have a place to park the unused car. We did not, at least not conveniently. And you don't say what you'd do with the $1000 - if that amount would be significant in paying down debt, etc.

 

If it's not an issue to garage it, and the cash isn't significant... Then keeping it as a back up might make sense if you think DH will need it again.

 

I guess it's a lifestyle choice, in some ways.

 

For us, going to one car felt scary. Now it's liberating.

:iagree:

 

We sold our second car and couldn't be happier. Granted my DH is about a 5 min walk from work, so that makes things easier. We've made a few adjustments here and there, but overall it's really taught us to prioritize our needs and we tend to do more as a family since the only way to leave the house is with that one car :001_smile: It's saved us quite a bit of money in gas and insurance. It was a reliable car, but it was nearing the 8 year mark and costly repairs were on the horizon. Worrying about what we'd need to fix just wasn't a burden we wanted to carry. I was concerned about what we'd do if something happened to our existing car (we're a family of 5 so it's hard to fit in anyone else's car and we don't have family nearby), but I was able to add rental car coverage to our car insurance for a VERY minimal amount.

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Please don't just let the insurance lapse by not paying it; depending on the state, you might have a very hard time getting insurance in the future if you just let it lapse.

 

Of course it's probably on the same policy as your other car, so you would not let it lapse for non payment anyway, but I just thought I'd mention that.

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If you aren't using it, but aren't comfortable getting rid of it, you might check with your insurance company about putting it on a storage policy. This is a very low cost policy that covers catastrophe such as theft or a tree falling on the car but does not cover any moving violations (since the car is meant to be in storage).

 

We keep a car in the US for our use when we're there visiting and this is what we do; the annual fee for the storage policy is roughly equal to one month of the previous liability coverage, and then we are able to call at any time and activate it (switch back to regular coverage) when we need to use the car. They ask for the odometer reading when we activate and when we put it back in storage each time to be sure the car hasn't been driven.

 

This might make it more affordable for you to hang on to the car just in case, yet not be spending tons on insuring a car that is just sitting in the garage.

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If you aren't using it, but aren't comfortable getting rid of it, you might check with your insurance company about putting it on a storage policy. This is a very low cost policy that covers catastrophe such as theft or a tree falling on the car but does not cover any moving violations (since the car is meant to be in storage).

 

We keep a car in the US for our use when we're there visiting and this is what we do; the annual fee for the storage policy is roughly equal to one month of the previous liability coverage, and then we are able to call at any time and activate it (switch back to regular coverage) when we need to use the car. They ask for the odometer reading when we activate and when we put it back in storage each time to be sure the car hasn't been driven.

 

This might make it more affordable for you to hang on to the car just in case, yet not be spending tons on insuring a car that is just sitting in the garage.

 

This is what we have decided to do for now--at least while we consider the issue further. We called our insurance and they said if we need to drive the car we just need to call them first--preferably a day in advance.

 

This car is a '96, so a good 16 years old. It's been incredibly reliable so far, but I wouldn't plan to drive it for another decade! If we sell it I will put the money into a savings fund for a "new" (aka, reliable used car) at some point in the future. We wouldn't get much money for it of course. We actually did the one-car thing for the first years of our marriage, so I know it's possible.

 

Thanks for everyone's input. It helps me to sort through possibilities and potential concerns.

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We did one car for a while and it was awful. If there is any chance that the current van pool will fall apart or that your dh will change jobs, keep it.

 

You can suspend the insurance (don't just let it lapse) and not register it every year if you don't want to drive it at all.

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We just moved to be a single car family. Dh works nights so we rarely overlap our need of cars. But we also live in an urban area. There are lots of other options for transit - we can metro, call a cab, or use the Zipcar (there's one right in our alley, actually). So it made a lot of sense.

 

Someone I knew years ago told me how she had moved to be a one car family for a time. She said that when she did it, she just had to decide that every time she needed to do it, she was just going to take a cab without thinking about the money. Her regular commutes were all with the car or on public transit, but every time something came up - crazy rainstorm, sick kid needs to be picked up at school, unexpected conflict for the car - she just took at a cab. At the end of the year, she tallied up the receipts and said it was still massively less than the car payments and the insurance.

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My husband has started riding in a vanpool to commute to work. His car is now sitting in the garage unused, and we're trying to decide whether to hang onto it or sale it. It's not worth more than $1000, and I feel like it's not worth paying to keep it registered and insured when we're not using it. I like the idea of having a backup car in case of need, but our whole family doesn't fit...WWYD?

 

Call your insurer and find out if you can get a rider for it to be an emergency vehicle only. Basically, it's a really cheap way to keep it insured and available for when your other car is down. There are other options as well, such as policies that limit the miles you drive, etc. Talk to your agent and shop around. When we did this, it cost us about $25 for 6 months for backup riders.

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My husband has started riding in a vanpool to commute to work. His car is now sitting in the garage unused, and we're trying to decide whether to hang onto it or sale it. It's not worth more than $1000, and I feel like it's not worth paying to keep it registered and insured when we're not using it. I like the idea of having a backup car in case of need, but our whole family doesn't fit...WWYD?

 

 

We went through a similar experience.... my husband also rides the van pool, so we gave up our 2nd car for a year. It has pros and cons. When the kids have each had something going on at the same time on the same day, we had to do a bit of planning. There were many times it was definitely an inconvenience. But it also saved us a ton of money on insurance, gas and repairs/maintenance!

Having said all of that, we are about to purchase a car in March!:tongue_smilie:

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