Wednesday, January 28, 2009

A car (part 2)

Part 2 - Your post college years.

When you graduate - you may be tempted to go buy or lease an expensive car.

Don't do this.

Several reasons.

1.) Having a car ties you down. When you are young (22-39), you will want to be able to pick up and move around at any time. Your friends will move around. You may meet different girls in different cities. Owning an expensive car will lock you into debt and will be hard to sell.

2.) After college, girls care less about cars and more about where you live and what you do. Most girls you meet will be successful and not as impressed by a flashy car just yet. Unless its very flashy (ie porsche, ferrari, etc), and then you probably don't need to read this blog anyway.

3.) When you are 22 - 28, you have to start saving for a house and retirement. If you don't understand the concept of compounding interest, then google it and understand that is where you make all your savings work. Don't throw money at an expensive car. Not yet. Wait until your budget is settled. Things can change dramatically when you are young.

4.) Freedom. Pure and simple, the less bills you have, the more freedom you have and you can move around and enjoy life more. You can change careers or take time off for extended months.

5.) Buy a car you can pay off in 3 years. That means you are looking for something around $14 - 16,000.

What's in a Car

Today is a snow day in the northeast.
In that spirit, I'll talk about the reason why half of you are sitting at home, sipping on some coffee and khalua.

What's in a car?

We'll start in high school.

In the land of suburbia, a car means freedom. If you're lucky enough to have your parents buy you a car, pat your lazy ass on the back and keep telling yourself you've earned it by earning those B's on your report card and making the JV basketball squad. What are you looking for in a car?

I'll throw out my recommendations and things to consider:

-Fuel Economy - fuel's likely to remain relatively cheap for the next few years as we deal with this global recession. But after that, you don't want to be paying $4.50 a gallon for a guzzler. That means avoid the big monsters like the older Suburbans, Explorers, etc.

-Off-road Capability - if you live anywhere it gets muddy, snowy, or congested with traffic (you do), off-road capability rocks. Look at Jeep Wranglers. Reasons: You can get anywhere in the snow. You can take it to tailgates in muddy fields (think ahead to college), you can take it camping, you can take it to the beach, you can take it to the mountains to ride. Bottom line, look at cars and trucks that get you anywhere at anytime. Being stuck in the snow is lame. You want be able to take advantage of that hot chick all alone at home on those snow days.
Other suggestions: Subarus, Audis, Jeeps

-Insurance - if you're paying for this, don't get crazy with your vehicle. When you are young, chances are you are going to get into an accident and insurance will go up. It will probably not be your fault, but smashing up your new Lexus GS is a waste of a car that shouldn't be owned by you until you're 27+.

-Automatic vs Standard - Dudes, if you can't drive stick, you have a problem. Large trucks are stick. Motorcycles, dirt-bikes, and real sports cars are manuals. If you own a "sports car" and its automatic, you are a GIRL. If you get a car, get stick. If you get a truck and it doesn't come in stick, check to be sure you have a pair, then reconsider if you can find a similar truck in stick. Don't be the laughing stock of the construction crew you work on one summer when you try to back up the dump truck and you have to get out and cry that you can't move it.

-Bottom Line
In high school, two things in cars rule: Looks and Fun. Girls like fast cars that look good. It's an instant turn on. You will see some crusty looking dudes with nice cars getting some fine ass. The fun factor is the second part. In high school and life, you gotta be the one who makes things happen. If you have a vehicle you can take anywhere and beat up and have fun in, you'll be the one controlling the action. Be sure you consider your goals heavily before "investing" in a vehicle. Wait - I know what you are saying. Investing is not possible because its a depreciating asset. You are investing in yourself, your image, your life experiences, not an asset.

What I'm Listening To

Check out Blue October - Dirt Room

Check out Airborne Toxic Event - Sometime Around Midnight