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Thread: Looking for a grown up...financial advice please

  1. MilitarySOS Jewel
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    #1

    Looking for a grown up...financial advice please

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    hey everyone! So, lately I've been feeling confused about my finances and I'm wondering if I should seek a professional financial planner? I'm just not sure the best way to pay my debts vs buying things that I want etc... so if anyone recommends going to see a professional let me know how that works.

    But, this post specifically I'm looking for advice on buying a new vehicle. I love my little car, but it doesn't drive in the snow and I'm an essential employee. Luckily, my mom has a Tahoe and can usually help me on storms, but I just hate relying on her and her schedule. Now, I'm always going to have a job where I need to get to work during storms. So, I want and also feel it's a necessity to get a larger car/suv at some point. I'm just not sure when is the right time financially.

    The beginning of this year I planned to pay off my car loan by the end of this year, and I was very excited to be without a car payment for the next few years atleast. But then the snow came and brought be back to reality. I also plan to buy a home in 1.5 to 2 years. So, I'm feeling like this is the right time to get a new car. But the car payment is just turning me off, even though I can afford it.

    So, I'm wondering if I should try to make my current car/moms Tahoe carpool situation work for as long as it can. Or just bite the bullet and get a new car now. (I'm looking at the jeep renegades because they drive amazing in the snow)
  2. Team Rocket
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    #2
    What car do you have? Can you do anything to make it drive better in snow? Does snow driving just make you nervous? I had a Geo prism and then a Camry and grew up in MN and honestly had very few problems getting around. I guess what I'm asking is, do you really need a different car or are you rationalizing it due to an emotion-based reason?
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  3. MilitarySOS Jewel
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    #3
    Quote Originally Posted by rocket_lizz View Post
    What car do you have? Can you do anything to make it drive better in snow? Does snow driving just make you nervous? I had a Geo prism and then a Camry and grew up in MN and honestly had very few problems getting around. I guess what I'm asking is, do you really need a different car or are you rationalizing it due to an emotion-based reason?
    I have a Hyundai Accent. I did recently get new nice tires and haven't tested them out in snow yet. But, yea, last year I went to work and 3 very strong male coworkers had to push my car up the hill so I could get there. I'm definitely nervous about it all.
    But, yes I don't want to make an impulsive decision, I really want to do what makes financial sense. So, I need help to realize if this is just a more emotional want for something new and fun or if it does make reasonable sense
  4. Senior Member
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    #4
    Quote Originally Posted by CourtLove View Post
    hey everyone! So, lately I've been feeling confused about my finances and I'm wondering if I should seek a professional financial planner? I'm just not sure the best way to pay my debts vs buying things that I want etc... so if anyone recommends going to see a professional let me know how that works.

    But, this post specifically I'm looking for advice on buying a new vehicle. I love my little car, but it doesn't drive in the snow and I'm an essential employee. Luckily, my mom has a Tahoe and can usually help me on storms, but I just hate relying on her and her schedule. Now, I'm always going to have a job where I need to get to work during storms. So, I want and also feel it's a necessity to get a larger car/suv at some point. I'm just not sure when is the right time financially.

    The beginning of this year I planned to pay off my car loan by the end of this year, and I was very excited to be without a car payment for the next few years atleast. But then the snow came and brought be back to reality. I also plan to buy a home in 1.5 to 2 years. So, I'm feeling like this is the right time to get a new car. But the car payment is just turning me off, even though I can afford it.

    So, I'm wondering if I should try to make my current car/moms Tahoe carpool situation work for as long as it can. Or just bite the bullet and get a new car now. (I'm looking at the jeep renegades because they drive amazing in the snow)

    It is almost never necessary to get a larger car/SUV. Perhaps if you have 4 kids. It just isn't. People justify it, marketers try to get you to take the bait, but it is almost never necessary. So allow yourself to accept that, and you are one step ahead of the game. Then allow yourself to accept that you should always purchase a used car-preferably 3-4 years old with low mileage unless you are good with cars, and that gets great MPG. The MPG should be your #1 factor, not the look of the car or anything useless like that.

    If you truly need a car that is good in the snow, it still doesn't need to be large, and it can still be used. It should not be an SUV.

    As for a financial planner, 95% of the time they are unnecessary. You should never go to one who works on commission. And the alternative is one you have to pay for, and that's a waste of money, unless *maybe* you are looking to figure out what investments to make. But if it is just a case of you needing to spend less, that's all impulse control and no one can do that except you, and it silly to pay someone to try.

    People get really defensive about information like this, and that's usually because they want to rationalize their own bad decisions. If you don't have enough money, have debt, and/or aren't saving for retirement (yes, even when you are really young), then you need to make different choices. It really is that simple. Set a budget and stick with it. 100%. Do not allow deviation from the budget to be an option. Give yourself a small bit of waste-money every month, and that's it. No matter what.

    Debt should be treated as an emergency, and instead our culture treats is as something normal and acceptable. Treat it like a hair on fire emergency, as my favorite personal finance blog, Mr Money Mustache, likes to say. Don't allow yourself to believe it is okay. And work like hell to get rid of it ASAP. Once your debt is gone, then *maybe* you can consider a new-to-you car. Not until then. If you don't like that answer, then it should motivate you to get rid of the debt all the more quickly. When you debt is paid off *and* you've saved up enough cash to pay for it WITHOUT a loan, then you can afford a new (used!) car. Until then, by definition you can't afford it.

    It's a change of mindset, and not everyone is ready to make it. We've evolved to be a culture of wanting what we want, and not caring that we haven't earned it and can't afford it. You can choose to continue to be like that, in which case your life may be full of financial stress, emergencies you can't cover, and working until the day you drop dead. Or you can choose to be different. And maybe that means driving your car until the day it dies and then driving another older, non-fancy car; and mayeb it means eating beans and rice three nights a week until the debt is gone. But it also means being able to truly afford the things you need, and a few of the things you want; never running out of money or stressing about an expense; and being able to retire at a younger age and really enjoy the life you've worked for. Doesn't that sound better than having a fancy new car right now but working as a Walmart greeter--if you are lucky--when you are 70 or having to get buy on $1700 a month in social security and not even being able to afford a decent meal or a tolerable nursing home? It's delayed gratification, and that's something that doesn't always come naturally. But it's a goal to strive for, and this car nonsense is a great place to start.
    Science always wins over bullshit. ~Dick Rutkowski
  5. MilitarySOS Jewel
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    #5
    Villanelle -- thanks for your response. I'm definitely concerned about safety in my current vehicle, and down the road I will need to get a vehicle that I feel more comfortable driving in storms. I wasn't specifically looking for advice on which car/year to get, because my I know what would work for me in that respect. It's just a matter of whether I want to spend the money now, or in a few years I think.

    In regards to the financial planner. I don't have an issue wth spending/saving, but I'm not sure how aggressively I should be paying off my debt. So I currently have 2 school loans and 1 car loan and I figured out a plan to pay them all off by the end of this year, while still managing to save/put towards retirement/have a little extra spending. But now I'm wondering if I should maybe spread that out to two years and then I'd have more money to put towards a car I really want or lasik eye surgery which is something else I've really been wanting. Ugh, I just don't know the right way to go about it
  6. MilitarySOS Jewel
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    #6
    I'm with you Villenelle.

    I live in MI so I hear you on the snow.

    My first car was a 1999 Bonneville and cost $1600. The thing was a V6, heavy and was a freaking BEAST in the snow. Once we saved enough to pay off all of DH's student loans and "upgrade" my car, I bought a Chevy Cobalt, which is terrible. What I wouldn't do for my old no a.c. rustbucket once the storms hit!

    I would at least try out your new tires before you get too settled on buying a new car. Tires can make a day and night difference.
  7. MilitarySOS Jewel
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    #7
    Have you heard of Dave Ramsey? I used his plan and graduated college totally debt free (and with $10,000 in the bank). DH used it to pay off all $47,961 of his college loan debt in less than three years so we could be debt free before we got married.
  8. MilitarySOS Jewel
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    #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Katyp View Post
    I'm with you Villenelle.

    I live in MI so I hear you on the snow.

    My first car was a 1999 Bonneville and cost $1600. The thing was a V6, heavy and was a freaking BEAST in the snow. Once we saved enough to pay off all of DH's student loans and "upgrade" my car, I bought a Chevy Cobalt, which is terrible. What I wouldn't do for my old no a.c. rustbucket once the storms hit!

    I would at least try out your new tires before you get too settled on buying a new car. Tires can make a day and night difference.
    Yea, I guess I've just had so many scary moments in my little cars that make me want something big and durable that grips the road lol!
  9. MilitarySOS Jewel
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    #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Katyp View Post
    Have you heard of Dave Ramsey? I used his plan and graduated college totally debt free (and with $10,000 in the bank). DH used it to pay off all $47,961 of his college loan debt in less than three years so we could be debt free before we got married.
    No, but I'll definitely check it out!
  10. Justice Beaver: The Crime Fighting Beaver
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    #10
    I would hold off on the car if you already have a car loan. Where do you live? Sorry, I didn't see if you posted that already. I only got a "new" car in 2014 because my car at the time was like newp, I'm done. I bought a 2009 with low miles, super glad I did. Low car payment and low property tax. Keep that in mind.

    I also agree on the financial planner. It sounds like you just need to sit down, look at your bank statements and see where you've splurged and how you can cut back. I find financial planners necessary if you have a shitton of money and don't know how to manage/invest it.

    Vill for the win basically

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