So, we bought a car....
After what seemed like it should have been more than an ordeal we finally broke down and bought a car. I never intended to leave the dealership the owner of an automobile, much less a new one, but that's what ended up happening.
See, my husband and I are very practical people. We're also rather frugal. It was hard for us to decide to get a car in the first place. We knew we wanted one but were unsure how the costs would affect us. We also knew that having one would help make our lives with a new seven month old baby easier. And comfort is, at times, both practical and worth the money.
We did the research on line. We spoke to numerous car owners or those who were also making the consideration. We priced things and came up with a budget. Yet, even armed with all this information, we were afraid to hit the dealership.
We felt like prey just sitting there asking for it. We felt it was pretty obvious we didn't know the first thing about becoming a car owner. Luckily the dealers didn't swarm around us like flies the moment we approached the dealership.
in fact, it all went down rather painlessly. We looked at the new vehicles, and at the used. We were prepared to take something sort of in between. We thought we wanted a Honda CR-V. A used one would have been fine. Also, a 2-wheel drive would have been less expensive.
Only thing was the used ones didn't have side curtain airbags. This may not be important to some but it was to me. Also, the ones I looked at seemed rather generic inside. Nice, but not exactly what I wanted. And if I was going to spend the money, more than $20K, I wanted the car to be perfect.
The other issue was that the 2 wheel drive wouldn't be available for anywhere from a month to two months. Convenient for the dealer who had the 4 wheel drive just sitting there, no? Look, I get it. I know the whole point is to get the person least likely to buy a car to walk out of the dealership with one, preferably one more expensive than she thought she could afford.
Truth is, I wanted the 4 wheel drive. I always did. I was willing to compromise but I really wanted the 4 wheel drive. I also wanted to be in my own car by this weekend when we have a road trip planned.
That second reason is not the reason to get a new car. But it helped. We're very skeptical, my husband and I, and we don't allow ourselves to be taken for a ride. We were very careful with this decision and it ended up paying off. We got some money off the car, a 2008 CR-V EX, with everything we wanted it to have. We got the color of our choice (silly but if you have to live with it for fifteen years you'd better get what you like). We get to pick it up tomorrow.
I am thrilled and terrified. I feel safe in the car, which was concern #1. The car has stability control and the proper hooks and latches for the car seat/infant carrier. Hondas are known for their safety features. Yet I feel extravagant. I know I'll have it for years to come--we're Honda people in my family and those cars just don't die. Well, we'll just have to see what it's like to drive it and live in it. It won't be like a rental in that I won't ever have to turn it in.
I feel so grown up, like I've come home. I even got insurance instantly the night after we got home from the dealership. And the man who sold us the car was not a sleazeball. No, rather than the stereotypical sketchy salesperson desperate to sell us a lemon this guy was all class.
I think we were lucky in that he didn't try to fool around with us. I think it was obvious we meant business but that we wanted a car. I also think having the baby helped. We seemed like real people with real needs who were looking for something dependable, safe and practical. We also pretty much knew what we wanted.
So, as of tomorrow evening I will no longer be merely a pedestrian on these mean streets of Brooklyn. World, watch out!
Pic of CR-V (would that it were black) by redjar.