May 10, 2016

How We Are Saving For Our Next Cars

How We Are Saving For Our Next Cars
Troy and I's cars are both older (~10 years old) and have well over 100,000 miles each on them. They are starting to get more and more issues that sneak up on us. We know that sometime in the next 2 years or so, we will both need new cars. Cars are so expensive and the idea of buying two cars is pretty overwhelming to me. Therefore, we are doing certain things to help us save for our next cars so that we have a lot of the money that we need to buy them.

I am not sure if we will buy new or used. If we buy used, it will be a car without a lot of miles on it. I am not set on a certain kind of car but do want an SUV as we plan to have more kids and need one bigger vehicle for the family. Now my husband on the other hand, he is very set on what he wants. He has been talking about getting a Mustang pretty much non-stop for the last two years and will be getting one as his next car. He is obsessed!

In order to save money for our next cars, this is what we are doing:

1. Create a budget

A couple of months ago, I heard about You Need a Budget (YNAB) on another blog and I loved the name and the idea and looked into using the service myself. YNAB is a personal budgeting web app that can also work on your phone.

YNAB wants you to follow 4 different rules: 1. Give every dollar a job. 2. Save for a rainy day. 3. Roll with the punches. 4. Live on last month's income. This service helps you to get total control of your money and is flexible. It helps you stop overdrafting, pay off credit card debt, lower stress levels and achieve financial peace.

An example of how YNAB works. I love that it helps you to realize how much you have to spend in each category
You can change your budget as priorities change. For example, after we had Adalyn, one of our top priorities became saving for her college. We decided that we eventually want to buy another house (in 3-4 years) so we have started to focus more on saving for that.

We are following a budget which we have never really done before. When our money that we planned to use to go out to eat with is gone, that means no more going out to eat that month which is helping us budget.

The money that I saved with Rakuten in the last month.

2. Coupons and shopping sales

I love to work hard at saving money. I love couponing, shopping sales and shopping at ALDI saves us a lot of money. I love the apps Retail Me Not and Rakuten which have saved me a lot of money over the years. Before I make a purchase, I just check Retail Me Not and a lot of times, there is a coupon for the store that I am purchasing at and I save extra money. If something is not on sale and I do not truly need it then, I wait until it goes on sale.

Door to Door Organics Produce
Part of one of my Door to Door Organics orders. I order the medium box since we love produce.
When I find a great deal on a product that we use, I buy a bunch of them. For example, I found organic, low-sodium beans reduced for maybe $0.29 a can earlier this year. I bought a ton because it is something that we use a lot of. We also buy produce in season to save money.

3. Waiting as long as we can to buy new cars

Something that is hard to do is not get what you want when you want it. My husband would have loved to get his beloved Mustang this spring but we are going to try to wait another year to buy our cars so that we can save more money. That way, we can save the money that we need to and overall, we will need less cars in our lifetime than if we bought new ones every 5 years.

This kid is better dressed than most people I know! haha

4. Limiting spending

Troy and I are pretty good at limiting spending. We do not go out to eat all the time. We try to make due with what we have, etc. After doing a big spring cleaning and getting rid of a lot of stuff, I realized that I am actually happier with less. I hate clutter so why do I continue to buy more and more and create clutter in my house?

My one weakness is buying stuff for Adalyn. I love buying her clothes, books, toys, etc. I do get almost everything on our local Facebook swap group, mom to mom sales, or on clearance though so I do not think that it is too bad of a habit.

5. Put money into savings

After saving money by being frugal, we put our money into a savings account. We had a little money in stocks which turned out to be a poor decision because the stock we invested in crashed and we lost a decent amount of money. Since we do not have a ton of money to be playing around with, we took our money out of stocks and are going to put in in more stable savings. I am working on getting some of our money into a CD which pays higher than a savings account. The rest will be in our savings account which only pays 0.9% but is better than nothing.

Another option to save money for your kids is by setting up a UGMA account. It can be a great option to save money for kids for the future.

A local community center near us with an inexpensive waterpark.

6. Look for local free or cheap events

We use the Entertainment Book and Groupon for going out to eat and for different events. I like following local blogs such as Metro Detroit Mommy and Mrs. Weber's Neighborhood to know about local events that are going on that are either inexpensive or free. We love to get out and have fun so staying at home and doing nothing is not an option. There are so many inexpensive things that you can do instead of spending a ton of money. This helps with saving money a lot because we get to feel like we are experiencing a lot but are not spending an arm and leg.

Disclosure: This post is sponsored. All opinions are my own.

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  1. *Please* make sure you're putting money away for retirement. Stocks actually are a good long term investment if you make sure to diversify and hold on to them for a long time (index funds!) This can be *easy*, too: check out, a community site created around the basic investing principles of the founder of Vanguard.

  2. My husband recently left his job to start his own company. His business is a very slow-moving one, so after four months we still haven't seen any profit (though fingers crossed, that's about to change). We have been living on our savings, so I am ALL ABOUT saving wherever I can! One extra thing I do because I have the time is that I belong to a number of survey and consumer groups that allow me to accrue points which can then be redeemed for gift cards. These have helped me out so much over the last couple of months, and even allow us go out to dinner occasionally without spending much at all...and sometimes for free!

    Anyway, these are great tips! But I really only wanted to comment to say that the photo of Adalyn running in the pink dress is priceless! She is such a happy little girl! :)


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