If you’re been a reader for a while, you know my insurance woes, and my “ahem” somewhat questionable driving record. I’m not going to dispute that, but I am going to talk about how I ended up spending twice my budget on my car.
It was March 7th, 2008 when I crashed my car. By crash I mean we got T-boned by a transport truck and the car flipped multiple times and ended up upside down on side of the freeway. There wasn’t anything special about that day except that it was snowing lightly, and we were on our way to a Toronto Raptors basketball game.
Needless to say, that car, a 2005 Honda Civic, was a write-off. The insurance adjuster told me that before he went to look at it. Most cars that get flipped over multiple times get written-off as there is potential damage to the frame and insurance companies can’t risk having them on the road.
Before I get any further, I want to say we were fine. Nothing a hot shower, and a quick trip to Cuba couldn’t fix.
It took 3 weeks to get the insurance company to give me a cheque. Side note: you have the power to negotiate what they pay you. NEVER accept the first offer. With the cheque pending in my bank account, I went car shopping for a Mazda 3. I must have driven 15 of them when I saw her. She was beautiful, and red, and called my name out from the sea of the Mazdas and Hondas. I had set my sights on a Mercedes-Benz, and not just any one. A brand new one.
You may or may not know that I have impulse control issues when it comes to buying things, but I made the even bigger mistake of taking a friend who is worse than me. We signed for the car before the cheque cleared my bank account.
Buying the car was the easy part, figuring out the payment option was harder. At the end of the day, I had spent an extra $17,000 that I didn’t have at the moment. Si what did I do? I financed it directly from the car place instead of going through my bank and getting a lower rate because I’m that smart. These days I would recommend that you go through a site like money barn to figure out different interest rate options.
It took a year for the fire to be lit under my ass, and I started to double and triple my car payments to get rid of the loan quickly.