The Benefits Of Being A One-Car Family

If you had told me a little over a year ago that we would be a one-car family, I would have laughed. There was no way we could survive without two vehicles.

Then came the day that Danny's truck died in the parking lot of the funeral home. (Great irony, huh?) And then just a few days after that, the car refused to start, and we found out it needed a new engine. Needless to say a 10-year-old car wasn't worth a new part that serious.

So both of our vehicles were gone and we bought a new one. We contemplated getting two used ones but finally decided we were more comfortable with a new one. One. Just one, not one for each of us. And this totally changed my thinking about a lot of spending matters.

Being a one-car family has been fabulous for a number of reasons.

1. We've cut back to one car payment, one insurance payment and one vehicle registration.

2. Our budget for gas and car repairs has been cut in half.

3. We're more diligent in taking care of this car, saving money on care down the road. I think there's much more appreciation of this one car God has blessed us with compared to when we could be on the go whenever we wanted.

4. Since I only have the car a few days every other week (when Danny's driving the company vehicle while on call), I'm not out and about, being tempted to spend money.

5. The necessity for planning has sky-rocketed. With just one car I have to schedule my errands around when Danny doesn't need the vehicle. That's made me appreciate the importance of thinking ahead and coordinating our plans. Plus I have to time though shopping trips around payday, so we don't get caught short.

6. Danny and I have to communicate much more. This has honestly been the biggest blessing of the whole experience, even beyond the money we're saving. We're talking in the car while we carpool, we plan schedules and activities together and we're calling each other during the day to check in on each other. Want to strengthen your marriage? Downsize to one car!

While your family and work situations may not be designed around one car, and that's fine. For our house, though, it's truly been a blessing, financially and in our marriage.

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