So the wife and I finally caved and bought a minivan (Honda Odyssey). We have both enjoyed driving our sedans, but with the expansion of our family (baby 2 on the way) there has been increased pressure to get a bigger car. Especially for the times her parents come to visit since they cannot drive in the US. Our two sedans had been enough, but we found ourselves needing a bit more room.
My wife quickly nixed the idea of a hatchback, we did discuss the option of a SUV, but when it came down to it, we both sucked it up and decided that if we were going to go “big”, we should just get the minivan because it was the most practical. Given the amount of cargo space it can hold for hauls.
Given my mustachian tendencies, I wanted to go with a used car, but the wife wanted a new car (For the sake of family harmony, I agreed with looking for a new vehicle). After several dealerships and a couple months of negotiation we got what we think was a good deal for a trade in (we did not want to shop our old car around, and we took our sweet time making stops to various dealerships when time permitted outside of our other activities). We ended up getting $2000 less than our previous negotiated prices at the final place that we bought from, this price was also below the KBB price for the new car and our used car trade-in.
My wife commandeered my car, and asked me to drive the minivan (I reluctantly agreed to share my baby, but it did make sense she works more often than me). Also, I was comfortable with driving a minivan since I drove one in high school. Our new ride is definitely much more comfortable and I am far less reckless with driving it and with the number of people I cram into it.
What surprised me is that so far we have been driving this minivan much less than our other car. We have increased our occasional carpooling to work (when I am not working evenings or nights, the main reason we have not gone down to one car). Also, I have been much more discretionary about when I take the van out for errands. Probably because parking it feels like a bigger pain in the but than parking a sedan. I was expecting that with the decreased MPG we were going to be spending much more on gas. So far it has not been the case because this new purchase has changed our driving habits and we still default to our sedan when we can drive anywhere together.
Though we did drop a decent amount of cash on this van, we figure we will not have to buy a new vehicle anytime soon because we can continue to grow into it. We will likely use it more for family trips and when we both need the car. Otherwise, we have found that we prefer to drive the sedan when we are together, and I have found that I prefer to walk to the grocery store over trekking over in the van.
So even though I may have lost the battle when it comes down to a mustachian motor vehicle purchase, I feel like we have recovered decently from it and continue to move towards FIRE (winning the war).
Has anyone else found any surprising decreases in spending after “upgrading” their car, house, etc?