Cars and Transportation http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/4812/all en-US Here's How a Claim Will Impact Your Car Insurance http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-a-claim-will-impact-your-car-insurance <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/heres-how-a-claim-will-impact-your-car-insurance" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-475427309.jpg" alt="Man learning how a claim will impact car insurance" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You sideswiped a parked car. Or maybe you slammed on the brakes too late and rear-ended the driver ahead of you. Whatever happened, the accident is clearly your fault. Now it's time to give your insurance a call.</p> <p>When you file a claim, your auto insurer will pay for the repairs to your vehicle and, if you are at fault in the accident, whatever repairs are needed for other vehicles involved in the collision. Your insurer might also pay for any injuries suffered by you or other drivers.</p> <p>But filing a claim also comes with a negative: In most cases, it will cause your insurance rates to rise. How much your policy's rate rises depends on a host of factors.</p> <h2>Mitigating Factors</h2> <p>On its website, Geico says that drivers' rates don't automatically rise after an accident. Instead, the insurer looks at several factors before deciding whether to issue a rate increase. These include your driving record, the number of claims you've made in the past, and the amount of money that the insurer has paid out to you during the life of your insurance policy.</p> <p>Esurance also states that insurance rates don't automatically jump after an accident. The company says that minor accidents and fender benders don't always equal a rate increase, especially if you have a record of safe driving.</p> <p>Fault matters, too, of course. Esurance says that if you weren't at fault in an accident, your premium might not jump.</p> <h2>When Are Rates Most Likely to Jump?</h2> <p>Both Geico and Esurance say that premiums are more likely to increase if you are found at fault in a major accident. Again, your past driving record plays a big role in determining not only if your rate jumps after a major accident, but by how much.</p> <p>Your insurer, though, might increase your rate even if you weren't the driver who caused the accident. That's because car insurers have determined that even after an accident that isn't your fault, you are still statistically more likely to get into another accident. This makes you more of a risk to your auto insurer.</p> <p>Some states regulate how much of an increase you'll see after an accident, no matter who was at fault. Consider New York. Here, insurance companies can boost rates only if you were found at fault in an accident that caused injuries or more than $2,000 in property damage. In Massachusetts, insurers can only raise your premiums if you are found to be more than 50 percent at fault in an accident.</p> <p>You might also live in what is known as a no-fault state. In these states, each driver's insurer pays part of the costs involved in an accident, no matter who caused the incident. If you live in a no-fault state and file a claim, odds are that your insurance premium will rise even if the other driver was the cause of your accident.</p> <h2>How Long Before Your Rates Fall Again?</h2> <p>Fortunately, a rate increase isn't permanent. Esurance said that several factors play a role in how long your insurance premiums will remain at an elevated level after an accident. These include the severity of the accident, who was at fault, and whether alcohol was involved.</p> <p>Some states will regulate how many years back insurers can look when calculating premiums. In Massachusetts, drivers' at-fault accidents can only impact their auto insurance rates for three to five years.</p> <p>In general, you can expect your elevated rates to remain in place for three to five years.</p> <h2>How Much of an Increase Will You See?</h2> <p>Here's the big question: How much will your insurance rates rise after an accident? Again, this depends on a host of factors: Who caused the accident, were people injured, was there significant property damage, was speeding involved, were you drinking?</p> <p>A 2016 report by NerdWallet found that rates typically rise by $300 or less a year for an accident that you caused resulting in under $2,000 worth of damage. That rate increase jumps to $300&ndash;$600 a year if you cause an accident with $2,000 or more in property damage. If you cause an accident that results in any human injury, your rates will typically increase by $400&ndash;$800 a year.</p> <p>And if you are found at fault in multiple accidents causing $2,000 or more in property damage, your rates could rise by $1,000 or more a year.</p> <p>If your rate is going to rise, it won't come as a surprise. Insurers will notify you of any upcoming increase. Geico, for instance, says it will send you information about any rate increases about 30 days before your policy is up for renewal. At that point you can shop around to see if another company might give you a better rate.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-a-claim-will-impact-your-car-insurance">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-pay-as-you-drive-auto-insurance-worth-it">Is Pay-As-You-Drive Auto Insurance Worth It?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-cheap-auto-insurance-for-young-drivers">How to Get Cheap Auto Insurance for Young Drivers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/financial-iq-test-do-you-have-the-best-auto-insurance-coverage-for-your-needs">Financial IQ Test: Do You Have the Best Auto Insurance Coverage for Your Needs?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-times-when-its-okay-to-drop-insurance">6 Times When It&#039;s Okay to Drop Insurance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-tips-to-save-on-car-insurance">4 Tips to Save on Car Insurance</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation Insurance accidents at-fault auto insurance crashes fender benders no-fault premiums rate increase Fri, 17 Mar 2017 11:00:11 +0000 Dan Rafter 1909972 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Save Time and Money With These Driving Tactics http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-save-time-and-money-with-these-driving-tactics <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-save-time-and-money-with-these-driving-tactics" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_happy_driving_505602228.jpg" alt="Woman saving time and money with driving tactics" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found articles on simple driving practices that will save you time and money, cheap ways to learn new skills online, and how to make a good impression on your first day at work.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.thesimpledollar.com/15-simple-driving-tactics-that-will-save-you-surprising-money-and-time-too/">15 Simple Driving Tactics That Will Save You Surprising Money (and Time, Too)</a> &mdash; Avoid parallel parking whenever you can. You could waste a lot of time (and gas) jockeying back and forth to get into position. [The Simple Dollar]</p> <p><a href="http://www.csmonitor.com/Business/Saving-Money/2017/0221/5-cheap-ways-to-learn-new-skills-online">5 cheap ways to learn new skills online</a> &mdash; These websites offer courses where you can learn new, marketable skills. [The Monitor]</p> <p><a href="https://www.dumblittleman.com/first-day-work-make-good-impression/">First Day at Work? How to Make a Good Impression</a> &mdash; Be open to new knowledge, especially on your first day. Don't hesitate to ask questions about your assignments, the company, and any resources that may help you do your new job. [Dumb Little Man]</p> <p><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Fun-Activities-Introverts-38912181">22 Hobbies For People Who Really Love to Be Alone</a> &mdash; Gardening can be a fun activity for introverts. You can stay close to home while cultivating something beautiful or useful. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.kiplinger.com/article/business/T071-C000-S002-smart-strategies-to-get-more-sleep.html">Smart Strategies to Get More Sleep</a> &mdash; Avoid eating a big meal close to bedtime. If you're still hungry after dinner, have a small snack that's easy on your stomach, like cheese and crackers. [Kiplinger]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.shebudgets.com/health/5-basic-nutrition-rules-keep-body-healthy-2017/72159">5 Basic Nutrition Rules to Keep your Body Healthy in 2017</a> &mdash; Get a good amount of protein in your diet to boost your energy level. [SheBudgets]</p> <p><a href="http://bargainbriana.com/5-affordable-ways-keep-home-safe-secure/">5 Affordable Ways to Keep Your Home Safe &amp; Secure</a> &mdash; Millions of people each year are treated for fall-related injuries. To prevent falls, keep clutter off the floor, tape down your rugs, and install nonslip mats and grab bars in bathrooms. [Bargain Briana]</p> <p><a href="http://www.morewithlesstoday.com/10-tips-for-scoring-great-finds-at-the-thrift-store/">10 Tips for Scoring Great Finds at the Thrift Store</a> &mdash; It can be difficult to comb through an entire thrift store by yourself. Bring a friend, divide up the tore, and shop for each other. [More With Less Today]</p> <p><a href="https://due.com/blog/developing-discipline/">5 Tips for Developing Discipline to Reach Your Goals</a> &mdash; Take care of your health! You make better decisions when you're well-rested and healthy. [Due]</p> <p><a href="http://www.stackthechips.com/7-home-upgrades-not-worth-money-time/">7 Home Upgrades Not Worth Your Money And Time</a> &mdash; Pools are fun in the summer but they&rsquo;re expensive to maintain. [Stack The Chips]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amy-lu">Amy Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-save-time-and-money-with-these-driving-tactics">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-a-claim-will-impact-your-car-insurance">Here&#039;s How a Claim Will Impact Your Car Insurance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/remove-car-dents-quickly-and-cheaply">Remove Car Dents Quickly and Cheaply</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-things-car-salesmen-dont-want-you-to-know">17 Things Car Salesmen Don&#039;t Want You to Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-gas-rewards-credit-cards">5 Best Gas Rewards Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-used-car-salesman-reveals-dirty-tricks-and-how-to-beat-them">A Used Car Salesman Reveals Dirty Tricks (and How to Beat Them)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation best money tips driving tactics Thu, 23 Feb 2017 17:43:26 +0000 Amy Lu 1897623 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Get a High Rating and Make More Money as an Uber Driver http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-more-money-as-an-uber-driver <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-make-more-money-as-an-uber-driver" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-542696492.jpg" alt="make more money as an uber driver" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you currently <a href="http://uber.7eer.net/c/27771/207645/3437" target="_blank">drive for Uber</a> or Lyft, or have considered <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-earn-extra-money-with-your-car?ref=internal" target="_blank">using your vehicle to make money</a>, then there are some tips you can take advantage of to earn even more. The secret to making the most money out of these services is by getting a high rating. The higher the rating, the more opportunities you'll have. With Lyft, that may mean a larger tip. Uber offers incentive programs to highly rated drivers. Here are some easy ways to earn a high rating while driving for these services. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-extra-money-driving-for-uber-or-lyft?ref=seealso">How to Earn Extra Money Driving for Uber or Lyft</a>)</p> <h2>Provide the Best Service</h2> <p>By offering service above and beyond, you'll ensure a high rating from your passengers. Open the passenger door and help put their luggage in the trunk. Have phone chargers handy for your guests and don't forget to give your riders a high rating so they are more inclined to do the same for you.</p> <h2>Know the Area Well</h2> <p>The best drivers know their area well. They won't make a wrong turn or take the wrong exit because they got confused with the directions on their driving app. They know how to bypass congested areas safely and navigate smoothly. If the passenger thinks you're uneasy with the neighborhood, it'll make them less confident about your ability.</p> <h2>Ignore Your Phone</h2> <p>Many drivers use a Bluetooth headset or check their texts while they're driving. But it's never appropriate if you're on the job. Not to mention it can be illegal to use your phone while driving. You surely won't get a 5 star rating if you get stopped for a ticket.</p> <h2>Keep Your Vehicle Clean</h2> <p>Give your car a regular washing, inside and out. It should also smell clean, so it's a good idea to have a suble air freshener and drive with the windows down when there aren't passengers to air out any lingering odors.&nbsp;</p> <h2>Dress and Act Professionally</h2> <p>One of <a href="https://newsroom.uber.com/uk/meet-mohammad-the-driver-with-the-highest-rating-in-europe/" target="_blank">Uber's highest rated drivers</a> has a simple tip: If you're unhappy, don't come to work. The passengers aren't forcing you to work this job, in fact, they're paying you their hard earned money to provide a service. And just because you're not in an &quot;office&quot; it doesn't mean you should be dressed like you work from home. Dress in clean and neat clothes, and be polite and respectful.&nbsp;</p> <h2>Keep the Music Low</h2> <p>Keep the music at a reasonable volume. Soothing music like jazz or classical can put passengers in a relaxed mood. You can also ask whether they have a preference in music. Some might prefer to have no music at all.</p> <h2>Don't Be Overly Friendly</h2> <p>Your passengers want a positive experience in your vehicle. It's important that you are friendly and sociable, without going overboard. Don't push the conversation, as many riders prefer to be left alone or want to have a conversation with their fellow passenger.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-more-money-as-an-uber-driver">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-earn-extra-money-with-your-car">7 Ways to Earn Extra Money With Your Car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-you-can-earn-18-to-25-an-hour-with-amazon-flex">How You Can Earn $18 to $25 an Hour With Amazon Flex</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-part-time-jobs-to-do-while-your-kids-are-at-school">17 Part-Time Jobs to Do While Your Kids Are at School</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-extra-money-driving-for-uber-or-lyft">How to Earn Extra Money Driving for Uber or Lyft</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-uber-saving-or-costing-you-money">Is Uber Saving or Costing You Money?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation Extra Income lyft part-time job ridesharing side hustle side job Uber uber app uber driver Mon, 16 Jan 2017 10:30:25 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1873578 at http://www.wisebread.com Is Pay-As-You-Drive Auto Insurance Worth It? http://www.wisebread.com/is-pay-as-you-drive-auto-insurance-worth-it <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/is-pay-as-you-drive-auto-insurance-worth-it" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_driving_car_540836094.jpg" alt="Woman learning if pay-as-you-drive auto insurance is worth it" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Don't drive much throughout the year? Your wallet may be in luck, in more ways than one. Pay-as-you-drive car insurance plans (also known as usage-based car insurance plans) can provide a money-saving solution for drivers who don't drive often. Each month, your rate will vary based on how much you drive. The less you drive, the more you'll save.</p> <h2>How Does the Plan Work?</h2> <p>These unique auto insurance options work a bit like pay-per-minute cellphone plans, where you're only charged for what you use. In order to accurately determine how much you're driving, you will receive a small wireless device that plugs into your vehicle's OBD-II port. This will alert your insurance company to how many miles you drove, so they can determine your monthly bill.</p> <h2>Who Qualifies?</h2> <p>Pay-as-you-go insurer <a href="http://www.tkqlhce.com/click-2822544-12479902-1459881208000" target="_blank">Metromile</a> estimates that if you drive less than 200 miles per week, you can save money with their pay-per-mile insurance plans. They also found that if you drive less than 5,000 miles a year, you could pay 40%&ndash;50% less than you would with a traditional insurance plan. In fact, they estimate that 65% of drivers are overpaying for their insurance. These types of plans are especially beneficial to drivers who don't drive very often and people who are paying high insurance rates due to their age or credit history.</p> <h2>How the Pricing Works</h2> <p>Once you enroll, you will pay a low monthly base rate, plus a charge per mile of driving. Through Metromile, if you drive more than 150 miles per day (or 250 per day in Washington), you won't be charged for the extra miles above the cap, which means you won't overpay on a long trip. Other factors can also affect your rate, including age, vehicle, and driver history.</p> <h2>How Much Can You Save?</h2> <p>Many drivers will limit their coverage in order to save money when they don't drive often. However, this can end up costing you more in the end if you <em>do</em> get in an accident. Instead, a pay-as-you-drive plan can provide the coverage you need and save you money every month.</p> <p>Some insurers claim that you will save anywhere from 20%&ndash;50% on your premium, and certain providers will even offer an immediate discount just for installing the tracking device to your vehicle's onboard diagnostics port. You can get an accurate idea of how much you can save by comparing your current auto insurance costs to what you would spend using a simple plan, like those that Metromile offers.</p> <p>As an example, we will use Metromile's estimate of $46 per month, which includes a $30 flat monthly rate and 500 miles driven x $0.032 per mile. According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, the national <a href="http://www.dmv.org/insurance/average-car-insurance-rates.php" target="_blank">car insurance average</a> rate is just over $900 per year for a single driver. Compared to the $552 per year that you would spend on pay-as-you-drive plans, you'll save about $350 per year if you drive 500 miles per month, on average.</p> <h2>Who Offers It?</h2> <p>Progressive, Allstate, State Farm, Travelers, Esurance, Nationwide, The Hartford, Safeco, American Family, and GMAC are some of the bigger insurance companies that offer these types of plans, but many have additional stipulations. For instance, Progressive also monitors what type of driver you are by also collecting information about how hard you brake, how much you accelerate, and your driving patterns. Insurance companies like Metromile only monitor how many miles you are driving.</p> <h2>Is It Right for You?</h2> <p>Along with deciding whether to sign up for this type of plan, you will also need to find the right insurance provider. Sites like <a href="http://www.carinsurance.com/Articles/pay-as-you-drive-discounts.aspx" target="_blank">carinsurance.com</a> can help you determine what type of discount you can expect, what's measured, and what's available in your state.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-pay-as-you-drive-auto-insurance-worth-it">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-a-claim-will-impact-your-car-insurance">Here&#039;s How a Claim Will Impact Your Car Insurance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-times-when-bundling-insurance-doesnt-make-sense">4 Times When Bundling Insurance Doesn&#039;t Make Sense</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/repair-the-car-or-spend-the-cash">Repair the Car or Spend the Cash?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-tips-to-save-on-car-insurance">4 Tips to Save on Car Insurance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-mistakes-to-avoid-when-shopping-for-car-insurance">6 Mistakes to Avoid When Shopping for Car Insurance</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation Insurance car insurance mileage pay as you drive premiums rates savings usage based car insurance Mon, 09 Jan 2017 10:30:23 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1869650 at http://www.wisebread.com My 2016 Budget Challenge: What to Do With a Totaled Car http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-what-to-do-with-a-totaled-car <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/my-2016-budget-challenge-what-to-do-with-a-totaled-car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/toy_cars_crash_522837385.jpg" alt="Here&#039;s what to do with a totaled car" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p><em>[Editor's Note: This is another episode in Max Wong's journey to find an extra $31,000 this year. Read the whole series </em><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/max-wongs-budget-0" target="_blank"><em>here</em></a><em>.]</em></p> <p>Some stereotypes are true. People in Los Angeles suck at driving in the rain.</p> <h2>The Accident</h2> <p>Last week, Mr. Spendypants and I were driving down the center lane of the 110 Freeway. The road ahead was a multicar accident scene. Blocking the left hand lane was a smashed car facing oncoming traffic, its windows completely blocked by air bags. Blocking the right hand lane was not one, but two separate pileups.</p> <p>As we approached the accidents, we were struck from behind. The driver of the car that hit us had swerved to avoid crashing into the stopped vehicle in the left lane and plowed into our car, instead. The impact of the crash sent us skidding toward the stopped vehicles in the right-hand lane. If the initial impact wasn't bad enough, the driver who rear-ended us tried to pull out of his skid only to drive into the side of our car, instead.</p> <p>My first thought as we finally came to a stop on the wet pavement: Why did this have to happen to our nice car and not the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-everything-breaks" target="_blank">clunker that I want to part out for cash</a>?</p> <h2>The Aftermath</h2> <p>Karina, our 1993 Volvo 240 station wagon, did her job. We drove away from the accident without a scratch. Unfortunately, Karina didn't fare as well. The accident had smashed a rear door and quarter panel, and ripped off molding, a brake light, and a bumper cover.</p> <p>The next morning we drove Karina over to our <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-job-creation" target="_blank">Swedish mechanic</a> who put her up on the lift. Miraculously, she had not sustained any mechanical damage from the accident, just body damage. She is in perfect driving condition.</p> <p>Even with this slightly good news, I knew at this point that Karina was totaled. Car insurance generally works off a very easy algorithm: If the cost of repair is more than 75% of the car's value, that car is declared a total loss even if the car is in perfect working order.</p> <h2>The Appraisals</h2> <p>The bodywork estimate: $2,000. Average <a href="http://www.nadaguides.com/Classic-Cars/1993/Volvo/240/4-Door-Station-Wagon/Values" target="_blank">value of a 1993 Volvo 240 wagon</a>: $2,400. Boo.</p> <p>Luckily, the driver of the car that hit us is insured (by Progressive). We had their adjuster give us an appraisal and got a second appraisal (and opinion) from State Farm, Mr. Spendypants' car insurance. Both companies called Karina a total loss. This means that instead of paying to fix her, the insurance company would cash us out on Karina's value and we'd drive home in a damaged car with a check in our pocket.</p> <p>If we went through State Farm, the accident would go against our deductible and we would end up with a check for $3,199. If we went through Progressive, there would be no impact on our deductible and we would end up with a payout of $3,480.</p> <p>By the way, we were totally shocked that Karina had retained so much value. We'd purchased her in 2012 for $3,500. We were anticipating that they insurance companies would give us $1,000 and we'd be stuck paying out of pocket to repair her.</p> <p>Both insurance companies offered to buy Karina from us for scrap. Progressive valued Karina at $119 as scrap, and State Farm offered us a princely sum of $75 to take our totaled car off our hands. While all insurance companies offer to buy totaled cars &mdash; as a convenience to the customer &mdash; it should be noted that Karina's used parts are worth around $15,000. The rear door that we will have to replace on Karina sells for $450. And that's just for the exterior metal panel, not the interior of the door!</p> <p>I have no idea why more people don't understand what a total money-loser this is.</p> <p>The loss of almost $15,000 in parts value is not a convenience. Instead we will take our chances on repairing Karina. We accepted Progressive's check for $3,480.</p> <h2>The Action Plan</h2> <p>This is where owning a totaled car gets sticky. The moment Progressive cut us a check is the moment when we lost the original title to Karina. The state of California, like most states, revokes the original title on totaled vehicles to prevent damaged cars from being resold to unsuspecting buyers. The DMV will replace our original title with a Salvage Certificate. This becomes the new ownership document. Once we repair Karina, we can re-register her as &quot;Revived Salvage.&quot; She will never get a clean title again, but we will be able to resell her if we want to down the road.</p> <p>Yes. The process of re-registering Karina will be inconvenient, but not $15,000 worth of inconvenience. This is what my next week's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/reach-your-money-goals-faster-with-a-simple-naming-trick" target="_blank">action plan</a> looks like:</p> <ul> <li>Complete an Application for Reregistration.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Pull Karina's prior bills of sale to prove the chain of ownership.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Have California Highway Patrol inspect Karina.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Obtain smog inspections and other equipment certificates, if necessary.</li> </ul> <ul> <li>Pay the $50 total loss salvage inspection fee, the $5 automated per year prior history fee, and the title and registration fees.</li> </ul> <p>Alas, the body shop will not be able to repair Karina until the New Year. This means that we will be back down to one car for the entire month of December.</p> <p>Silver lining: We can use the $3,480 to pay down our debt challenge in the meantime.</p> <h2>Progress So Far</h2> <p>Well, there are better ways to make money than getting double-tapped on the freeway, but I'll take it.</p> <p><strong>Goal:</strong> $31,000</p> <p><strong>Amount Raised:</strong> $29,867.42</p> <p><strong>Amount Spent:</strong> $13,598.66</p> <p><strong>Amount Left to Go:</strong> $14,731.24</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/max-wong">Max Wong</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-what-to-do-with-a-totaled-car">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-job-creation">My 2016 Budget Challenge: Job Creation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-how-to-turn-your-spouse-into-a-money-saver">My 2016 Budget Challenge: How to Turn Your Spouse Into a Money Saver</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-three-lessons-about-saving-one-husband-learned-in-a-year">My 2016 Budget Challenge: Three Lessons About Saving One Husband Learned in a Year</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-everything-breaks">My 2016 Budget Challenge: Everything Breaks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-reduce-debt-or-save-for-an-emergency">My 2016 Budget Challenge: Reduce Debt or Save for an Emergency?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Cars and Transportation budget challenge car accidents insurance max wongs budget saving money totaled car Fri, 06 Jan 2017 10:30:25 +0000 Max Wong 1864424 at http://www.wisebread.com The 5 Best Bicycle Lights http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-bicycle-lights <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-5-best-bicycle-lights" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/vintage_bike_light_171237175.jpg" alt="Using the best bicycle lights" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whether you regularly commute by bike or just like the occasional night ride, you need a bike light to help you ride more safely. You can ride with confidence and instantly improve your visibility and safety with a bike headlight or taillight.</p> <h2>What Is a Bicycle Light?</h2> <p>A bike light is an illumination source that can be attached to your bicycle, which allows you to see better and allows you to be seen by oncoming drivers and pedestrians. You can choose from front, rear, and side lights, which can be mounted to the handlebar, helmet, or rear of the bike.</p> <p>Bicycle lights are an absolute essential for your personal safety, especially at night or where visibility and safety are a concern. They will also allow you to better see obstacles on the roadway, even in the dark and in incremental weather. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/night-biking-get-set-up-to-ride-the-night-away?ref=seealso">Night Biking: Get Set Up to Ride the Night Away</a>)</p> <h2>Top 5 Bicycle Lights</h2> <h3>Blitzu Cyborg USB Rechargeable Bicycle Tail Light</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2hu89LE"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/blitzu.jpg" width="200" height="200" align="right" alt="" /></a>Amazon&rsquo;s #1 best-seller in bike taillights, the <a href="http://amzn.to/2hu89LE">Blitzu Cyborg 168T USB Rechargeable Bicycle Tail Light</a>, has a wide-beam of eye-catching red light for high intensity. The lightweight, stylish light is larger and brighter than most other lights, so you can rest assured that you will be seen from blocks away.</p> <p>The safety light has six modes with up to a five-hour run time. The super bright rechargeable rear LED bicycle light fits on any road bikes or helmets. It offers 180-degree visibility and has horizontal or vertical mounting options. It is water resistant and has a weather-tight design, so you can use it in all conditions. It has a two-hour charging time and an automatic, fully charged cutoff system. The simple control button is conveniently located on top of the light for easy access.</p> <p>This is easy to install with no wires or external batteries. It is an Amazon best-seller and has outstanding online reviews, including more than 1,300 five-star reviews on Amazon. It is backed by a 30-day money back guarantee and a one-year warranty for your added peace of mind.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2hu89LE"><em>Currently $18.82 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>BV Bicycle Light Set Super Bright 5 LED Headlight</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2gFntro"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/bv.jpg" width="245" height="176" align="right" alt="" /></a>Amazon&rsquo;s #1 best-seller in bike headlights, the affordable <a href="http://amzn.to/2gFntro">BV Bicycle Light Set</a> includes a five-white LED Headlight with 30-40 feet range and a three-red LED Taillight. The super bright lights have up to 80 hours of battery life. The cutaway design allows light to pass through the sides for better visibility. With this set, you will be visible to motorists up to 1,500 feet away.</p> <p>There are three modes on each durable light: Steady, Flashing, and Emergency. The headlight is angle adjustable to the left or right and the taillight is adjustable either up or down. The set is weather-resistant and water-resistant, so you can ride confidently in any condition. You can even remove the headlight to use as a flashlight for emergency situations.</p> <p>These are easy to install and remove with a tool-less handlebar mount and an angle adjustable clip-on quick-release clip. They fit most handlebars and seatposts. The set requires six AAA batteries, which are not included. It has outstanding online reviews, including more than 2,100 five-star reviews on Amazon. It is also backed by a one-year warranty for your added peace of mind.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2gFntro"><em>Currently $8.18 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Light and Motion Urban 350 Bike Headlights</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2gIH5t9"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/light%20and%20motion.jpg" width="245" height="189" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://amzn.to/2gIH5t9">Light and Motion Urban 350 Bike Headlight</a> offers up to 12 hours of runtime. The waterproof micro-USB rechargeable light can handle any weather conditions and can withstand drops on concrete from one meter. The bright light features four modes, a colored battery status indicator, and a lockout mode, so it doesn&rsquo;t burn itself out by accident. It offers an ideal beam pattern thanks to high-quality custom optics, which put the light where it&rsquo;s needed most so you can easily be seen. It also features powerful amber side lights for better visibility to alert cars.</p> <p>The universal mounting strap and quick-release handlebar mount make it easy to install and charge without the use of any tools. It includes a Micro USB Charge Cable and is available in a range of colors. It is backed by a two-year warranty for your added peace of mind. The Sweethome calls this the best headlight available. Heavy.com recommends a number of Light &amp; Motion lights, so you can&rsquo;t really go wrong with the brand.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2gIH5t9"><em>Currently $49.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>CygoLite Hotshot 50 lm USB Rechargeable Bicycle Tail Light</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2gxUdhC"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/cygolite.jpg" width="155" height="245" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://amzn.to/2gxUdhC">CygoLite Hotshot 50 lm USB Rechargeable Bicycle Tail Light</a> lasts up to 500 hours on a single charge. The compact light is bright and easy to mount. It has six lighting modes and is water-resistant, so it works in all conditions. The on-site programmable (sop) technology allows for easy adjustments of the brightness and flash speeds. The new design also has an easier-to-push power button.</p> <p>This includes a mini USB charging cable, seatpost mount, and seat stay mount. It is an Amazon best-seller and The Sweethome calls it the best taillight available. If you&rsquo;d prefer a helmet mount, consider the <a href="http://amzn.to/2gIG8RL">Cygolite Expilion 850 USB Light with Helmet Mount</a> instead.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2gxUdhC"><em>Currently $28.98 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Blitzu Gator 320 POWERFUL Bicycle Headlight</h3> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2gII3Wp"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/blitzu2.jpg" width="200" height="179" align="right" alt="" /></a>Amazon&rsquo;s #1 best-seller in bike reflectors, the <a href="http://amzn.to/2gII3Wp">Blitzu Gator 320 POWERFUL Bicycle Headlight</a> includes a non-USB rechargeable LED taillight. The lightweight bike light can hold up to six hours on a charge. It has four modes and 360-degree swivel ability, so you can shine the light in any direction for ultimate visibility. The cycling safety light is super bright and offers up to 300 feet beam length. The USB rechargeable headlight charges in only two hours and features an automatic, fully charged cutoff system. The water-resistant light is weather tight, so you can use it in all conditions. The durable, reliable front bicycle light is constructed with military grade anodized finish, so it is impact resistant and built to last.</p> <p>It is easy to mount and detach the light without the use of tools. The quick-release feature allows you to slide the light out without removing the mounting bracket. The simple one touch dismount control button is conveniently located on top of the light for easy access. It is backed by a 30-day money back guarantee and a one-year warranty. It is an Amazon best-seller and has outstanding online reviews, including more than 1,100 five-star reviews on Amazon.</p> <p><a href="http://amzn.to/2gII3Wp"><em>Currently $24.97 on Amazon</em></a></p> <p>And those are our recommendations for the best bicycle lights. As always, be sure to check <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/buying-calendar">Wise Bread's Buying Calendar</a> to learn when and how to buy just about anything!</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-bicycle-lights">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-descalers">The 5 Best Descalers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-face-peels">The 5 Best Face Peels</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-cast-iron-skillets">The 5 Best Cast Iron Skillets</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-anti-itch-creams">The 5 Best Anti-Itch Creams</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-pet-flea-shampoos">The 5 Best Pet Flea Shampoos</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation Shopping 5 best bicycle lights bike bike lights product reviews shopping transportation Wed, 14 Dec 2016 10:31:20 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1853982 at http://www.wisebread.com You Can't Make It as a One-Car Family: Now What? http://www.wisebread.com/you-cant-make-it-as-a-one-car-family-now-what <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/you-cant-make-it-as-a-one-car-family-now-what" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-507846204.jpg" alt="going from a one-car family to two cars" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Having only one car seemed like a great idea, at first. It would save money, and surely you could all work out your schedules so that you could pass the car around, or drop each other off, or whatever.</p> <p>But then she got a new job across town, or you started working a lot of overtime. Maybe the car broke down and no one could get anywhere for three days, or your social schedules didn't overlap so well. Maybe sharing the car was causing so much friction that it was making the entire marriage feel hard.</p> <p>Whatever the reason, sometimes being a one-car family just doesn't work, or doesn't work anymore. Guess what? That's not the end of the world. Sure, it's more expensive to have two cars, but if that's what you need to do, then that's what you need to do. Here are some ideas to help you think through getting a second car and minimizing the impact on your finances.</p> <h2>Check the Problem</h2> <p>Is the car really the problem? And is getting another car the best solution to the problem?</p> <p>If you're fighting a lot and most of your fights are over the car, try to determine whether you're actually fighting over the car. Maybe, instead, one of you feels controlled by the other, or you're taking another frustration out on the car situation. Getting another car will only help if the car is actually the central problem.</p> <p>And if the distance to work is changing, consider whether moving might be a better option. Would you be happier, overall, if you had a shorter commute? Or, is there any way for one of you to use public transit, at least some of the time?</p> <p>Many times, getting a second car is the answer. But make absolutely sure it's the answer for you before you buy.</p> <h2>Consider Your Needs</h2> <p>Okay, so you definitely need a second car. But what kind of car, and how much car, do you need?</p> <p>If your second car is mainly going to be a commuter car, you can probably get something that is smaller and older, and therefore cheaper, than the cost of a new car. Sure, you still want to make sure it is reliable and in good working order, but you may not have to spend as much as you had first thought.</p> <h2>Re-Budget</h2> <p>Before you get a second car, consider all of the costs involved. There's not only the initial purchase of the car (or the down payment and regular monthly payments, if you go that route), but increased costs for maintenance, gas, and insurance, as well as any money you might invest in upgrading your vehicle (rims, speakers, stereo, etc.).</p> <p>Make sure your budget has room for these things before you buy, so you aren't blindsided when they come up. Having your money in order will make you feel more confident about this new decision.</p> <h2>Think of the Children</h2> <p>If you have kids or are planning to have them, consider car seats and their placement before you buy a second car. Will you need both cars to be able to transport the children? Will you want to swap car seats in and out or have separate seats for each car? Do your current seats fit in your new vehicle, with enough room for you to help buckle, unbuckle, etc.?</p> <p>These may seem like silly questions, but they can save you money later. If you buy a vehicle now that will meet your needs not only now but also in the future, you won't have to go through the hassle of selling a car and getting another one if things don't fit later on.</p> <h2>Plan Ahead</h2> <p>Before you go car shopping, decide which one of you will drive the new car and which one will keep using the old one. This may be a choice of personal preference, but there could also be good reasons why one or the other of you should have the new vehicle. Consider gas mileage, distance driven each week, commute time, comfort, and more.</p> <p>While you both should help choose the new car, recognize that some aspects of it will come down to who is going to drive it more and what they need and prefer. This can help in the selection process and may help make the ultimate choice of vehicle more straightforward.</p> <h2>Find Discount Gasoline</h2> <p>When you're driving two cars, you may be surprised at the cost of gasoline. If you can, try to find a discount program in your area. Many people find that they save by buying gas from Costco or Sam's Club, though you have to have a membership to use those stations.</p> <p>Other people get their fuel through a grocery store program. Kroger's is good, and they have stores throughout much of the United States. Albertson's also has one, though their stations are difficult to find in some parts of the country.</p> <p>Finally, most states have discount gas stations &mdash; places where they just charge less. In my area of the country, Sinclair and Valero tend to be cheap. They're usually a little out of the way, but aren't hard to hit if you know where they are and work them into your daily routine. You can save hundreds of dollars a year this way, depending on where you live and how much you drive.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/you-cant-make-it-as-a-one-car-family-now-what">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-smart-ways-to-boost-your-gas-mileage">11 Smart Ways to Boost Your Gas Mileage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-reasons-why-you-should-never-buy-a-new-car">3 Reasons Why You Should Never Buy a New Car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-does-it-cost-every-time-you-get-into-your-car">How Much Does it Cost Every Time you Get Into Your Car?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-know-before-leasing-a-car">What You Need to Know Before Leasing a Car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-ways-your-commute-is-killing-you-and-what-to-do-about-it">3 Ways Your Commute Is Killing You — And What to Do About It</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation commuting compromising driving new cars one car family two car family vehicles Mon, 05 Dec 2016 12:30:06 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1845596 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Secrets to a Higher Car Trade-In Value http://www.wisebread.com/8-secrets-to-a-higher-car-trade-in-value <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-secrets-to-a-higher-car-trade-in-value" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/hands_car_money_33988744.jpg" alt="Learning secrets to a higher trade-in value" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Not many of us relish the idea of spending time haggling over the price of a car. When it comes to your trade-in, it's the classic battle of wills; you want as much as possible for it, and the dealer wants to give you as little as they can. How do you win? What does it take to squeeze the most money out of the car you're handing over? Here's what you need to know, and do.</p> <h2>1. Never Mention Your Trade-In</h2> <p>The biggest mistake people make when they buy a new car is letting the salesperson know about their trade-in. It's one of the first things you'll be asked, too. &quot;So, what are you planning to trade-in today?&quot; is thrown your way, and most of us automatically point to the car we're in, or mention it in some other way. Before you know it, the dealer is looking around your car, umming and ahhing, and writing all sorts of things down.</p> <p>But what he or she is actually doing is figuring out how to deal with your trade-in and the new car as a package deal. When the paperwork comes out, it can suddenly get very confusing, and the price of your trade-in can fluctuate as the salesperson tries to get you to pay as much as possible for the new car, while giving you as little as they can for your trade.</p> <p>So, don't mention it. Don't even acknowledge it. Simply say that you want to negotiate the price of the new car, and only when that has been set in stone should you bring up the trade. That way, you know exactly what you're paying for the new car, and just what you're getting back from the trade-in.</p> <h2>2. Know the Going Rate for Your Car</h2> <p>This is not the 1970s. You have a wealth of information available at your fingertips (quite literally with smartphones) and you can arm yourself with every piece of financial data that will help your case. Dig around. Find out what your exact year, make, and model is going for, accounting for the mileage and condition. If you see that the average price for your trade-in (not private sale) is $7,200, and the dealer offers you $5,600, then you know you're being lowballed.</p> <p>Have the evidence with you. Use sites like <a href="http://www.kbb.com/">KBB</a>, <a href="http://www.nadaguides.com/">NADA</a> and <a href="http://www.searchtempest.com/">Search Tempest</a>. Bring printouts that you can show, highlighting the sales that support your asking price. But, be realistic, too. If sales of your particular make and model are sluggish (which happened to gas-guzzling vehicles when the price of gas skyrocketed), you can't expect the dealer to pay top dollar for something that will spend months on the lot.</p> <h2>3. Get Your Car Detailed</h2> <p>Whether you put the time in yourself, or pay a professional to do it, you must get your vehicle detailed before showing up at the dealership. At the very least, running it through a car wash can add several hundred dollars to the value. However, the cleaner and fresher you can make the car, inside and out, the more you will get for it. So do a thorough job, which includes cleaning and polishing the wheels and adding tire shine, cleaning all the windows, shining the leather or vinyl, removing any stains from fabric, shampooing the mats and carpet, and even spraying a little &quot;new car smell&quot; aerosol inside. Make it look as new as possible.</p> <h2>4. Fix What Can Be Fixed</h2> <p>This can be a tough call. If your car needs thousands of dollars in repairs, but doing them all puts you in the red based on the trade-in value, then don't do it. You have to recoup more than your investment. But if a few small items can be fixed at minimal cost, go ahead and get them done. Superficial things like broken wipers or missing valve stem caps make the car look like it wasn't cared for. Definitely change broken lights, including any in the cabin or trunk, and do what you can to mend tears and scrapes.</p> <h2>5. Get Rid of Any Dents, Dings, Scratches, and Holes</h2> <p>The bodywork on a car is the first thing anyone notices. Even if the car is in superb shape mechanically, the sight of scrapes, dents, and rust holes is incredibly off-putting to a buyer, and the dealership knows this. They will have to get all of that fixed, and so they will offer you less than the car is worth. However, it can be very affordable to get bodywork spruced up, and there are also tools available, starting at as little as $10, that can bring out dents and smaller scratches. When you're done with all that, a few coats of wax buffed to a high shine will really help boost the price.</p> <h2>6. Choose the Right Time of Year</h2> <p>For some cars, it may not make much of a difference. But on 4x4s, AWDs, convertibles, sports cars, and gas-guzzlers, <em>when </em>you choose to trade it in can have a huge impact on the price you'll get for it. For instance, when the winter months hit, there is much greater demand for used 4x4 and AWD vehicles. When there is greater demand, the prices go up, and as such, the price you will get can also go up. In the summer, the demand is not as great, so prices drop. Conversely, sports cars and convertibles are much more desirable when the sun is shining and the roads are dry. You will get more money for those cars if you sell them in summer. By the time winter comes around, the benefits of those cars are hampered by the weather.</p> <h2>7. Bring as Much Documentation as Possible</h2> <p>Cars are a lot like works of art; the more history you have on them, the more they're worth. In the art world, that's called provenance. With vehicles, it's things like service repair bills, oil changes, upgrades, and anything else that accurately documents how you have taken care of the car. It's all very well to say &quot;Oh yeah, this car has been cared for like royalty&quot; but without proof, it's not going to go very far. With a detailed service history or logbook, you offer proof of the car's history. That gives the dealer a selling point, and it means the car can fetch a higher price.</p> <h2>8. Come With Offers From Other Dealerships</h2> <p>Nothing motivates a salesperson to negotiate quite like the threat of going somewhere else. So, before you step foot on a lot, use the Internet and your phone to get quotes from other dealerships. You may have to take the car to them to get an accurate appraisal. When you have four or five offers in hand, use them to haggle and raise the offer price. When you have the best one you think you can get, go to the dealership that has the new car you want, armed with the offer from their rival. If they say the car is worth $3,500, and you have an offer of $4,200 from the dealership down the road, they will quickly re-asses their own offer.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-secrets-to-a-higher-car-trade-in-value">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/should-you-buy-your-leased-car">Should You Buy Your Leased Car?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-magic-words-to-say-to-get-the-best-new-car-price">10 Magic Words to Say to Get the Best New Car Price</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-buy-a-used-car-without-getting-ripped-off">How to Buy a Used Car Without Getting Ripped Off</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-new-car-costs-the-dealer-is-hiding-from-you">10 New Car Costs the Dealer Is Hiding From You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-you-can-score-a-great-deal-on-a-new-car">5 Times You Can Score a Great Deal on a New Car</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation bargaining dealerships detailing kelley blue book negotiating new car trade in value Tue, 15 Nov 2016 10:30:29 +0000 Paul Michael 1833140 at http://www.wisebread.com The Problem With Car Title Loans http://www.wisebread.com/the-problem-with-car-title-loans <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-problem-with-car-title-loans" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/car_coins_money_49234302.jpg" alt="Learning the problem with car title loans" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Your electric bill is due in three days and you don't have enough cash in your checking account to cover it. Or maybe a big credit card bill just arrived in your mailbox and you don't have enough dollars to even afford the minimum required payment.</p> <p>Should you take out a car title loan, a way to turn the title of your vehicle into quick cash?</p> <p>Most consumer advocates say &quot;no.&quot; Car title loans, they say, come with exorbitant interest rates. And the companies making them target consumers whom they hope won't pay them back on time. This way, the lenders who originate these loans make extra money on penalties and fees.</p> <p>Read on to learn more about car title loans &mdash; and why you should avoid them.</p> <h2>How Title Loans Work</h2> <p>Car title loans are fairly simple. You provide a lender with the title of your car as collateral. You can then usually borrow up to 50% of the assessed value of your car. To not incur any extra fees, you usually must pay the loan back in 30 days.</p> <p>If you don't pay the loan back, your lender will have your car repossessed. It's why most title lenders require that you drop off a copy of your car keys when you take out the loan.</p> <h2>Exorbitant Interest Rates</h2> <p>The biggest negative with car title loans are the sky-high interest these lenders charge. According to the Federal Trade Commission, title loans typically carry an <a href="https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0514-car-title-loans">annual percentage rate of 300%</a>. A report by the Center for Responsible Lending in 2013 summed it up this way: If you borrowed $1,000 for a month from a title lender, you'd typically pay $250 in interest. That is exorbitant.</p> <h2>Predatory Lending</h2> <p>Critics lump title lenders in with the originators of payday loans, saying both types of lenders are <em>predatory</em>. The Center for Responsible Lending, for instance, says that title lenders target consumers who are less likely to pay their loans back on time. Lenders like this because they can then force these consumers to refinance or &quot;roll over&quot; their loans several times, paying more fees and interest each time. When these consumers finally do pay back their loans, the title lenders have earned plenty of profit. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-terrible-loans-you-should-avoid?ref=seealso">10 Terrible Loans You Should Avoid</a>)</p> <p>The center said in its 2013 report that title loan borrowers renew their loans eight times on average, paying an average of $3,391, or nearly three times what they initially borrowed.</p> <p>And if consumers don't renew their loans and simply stop paying? Then title lenders simply take their borrowers' cars and sell them. Either way, the title lenders make a solid profit on their loans.</p> <h2>Car Title Loans Are Big Business</h2> <p>Car title loans generate plenty of money each year. The Center for Responsible Lending reports that each year, car title lenders earn $4.3 billion in fees on loans that total $1.9 billion. Title Max is one of the bigger of these lenders. The company says that since opening in 1998, it has expanded to more than 1,100 locations in the United States.</p> <h2>Fast Cash Alternatives</h2> <p>You know that title loans are a bad deal. But what alternatives do you have if you need fast cash?</p> <p>There are some. Of course, they all come with drawbacks, too. It's not easy to find a great deal when you need money quickly.</p> <p>Your best bet might be to borrow money from family members or friends. Make sure, though, that you pay back these loans quickly. Otherwise, you can easily ruin your relationships.</p> <p>If you can't borrow money from friends or family, there are always credit unions and banks. You can apply for a personal installment loan from these sources. In an installment loan, you'll pay back a portion of your debt every month, with interest, until it is paid off. Banks and credit unions will charge you interest on their loans, but their interest rates will be far lower than the interest you'd pay on a car title loan. The challenge? You might not qualify for one of these loans if your credit is weak. The application process might take time, too, meaning that you might not gain access to the money you need before your other bills come due.</p> <p>You can also turn to your employer for help. Maybe you can secure an advance on your next paycheck that you can use to pay off your upcoming bills. The problem here, of course, is that your next paycheck when it does arrive will be smaller. At the same time, your boss might reject your request, and this can make for an awkward office environment.</p> <p>The truth is, there is no perfect option when you need cash and you need it in a hurry. The best approach is to build up an emergency savings fund that you can tap whenever a financial emergency arises. Financial experts say that you should have at least six months' worth of living expenses saved in one of these funds at all times. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/change-jars-and-8-other-clever-ways-to-build-an-emergency-fund?ref=seealso">Change Jars and Other Clever Ways to Build Up an Emergency Fund</a>)</p> <p>That sounds overwhelming, but there's nothing wrong with building up that fund slowly. Deposit what you can each month, even if it's as little as $50. Before long, you'll have grown a solid emergency fund. Then you won't have to worry about title loans or other sources of fast cash.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dan-rafter">Dan Rafter</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-problem-with-car-title-loans">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-surprising-things-lenders-check-besides-your-credit-score">4 Surprising Things Lenders Check Besides Your Credit Score</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beware-of-these-common-debt-consolidation-traps">Beware of These Common Debt Consolidation Traps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/refinance-these-4-common-debts-before-year-ends">Refinance These 4 Common Debts Before Year Ends</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/can-t-afford-your-car-much-longer-negotiate-to-keep-it">Can’t Afford Your Car Much Longer? Negotiate to Keep It</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-invest-when-youre-in-debt">6 Ways to Invest When You&#039;re In Debt</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation borrowing money car title loan fees interest rates lenders predatory loans Fri, 21 Oct 2016 10:00:21 +0000 Dan Rafter 1816945 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Times You Can Score a Great Deal on a New Car http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-you-can-score-a-great-deal-on-a-new-car <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-times-you-can-score-a-great-deal-on-a-new-car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_driving_happy_70095497.jpg" alt="Woman scoring a great deal on a new car" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When it comes to scoring a new set of wheels, most personal finance experts would agree that used is best. However, used is not always an option if your partner wants a new vehicle or if you are looking for a specific vehicle to accommodate your driving needs. That's where these tips come in.</p> <p>Buying a new car at these times can help you land a lower price on your new vehicle. Remember to work on your negotiating skills before heading to the dealership.</p> <h2>1. Labor Day</h2> <p>Labor Day has already passed this year, so keep this information in your head for future reference. Market Watch said, &quot;The time around Labor Day seems to be the sweet spot for bargain hunters, as new models jostle for space on dealers' lots with the outgoing ones.&quot; Many dealerships will offer cash back rebates and other incentives to get you to buy, so take advantage of these offers.</p> <p>We bought our Kia Sorento on Labor Day in 2012. We were initially looking at a used version, but the new model ended up being less due to not having unnecessary trim, and it came with better offers. To qualify for a $1,500 discount, we had to do a loan through them, which at 4% was horrible. We called a credit union the next day and refinanced the loan to under 2%. Sorentos were then in a settlement suit that year, which means we get reimbursed for a percentage of our gas for the life of the car &mdash; so that car is not going anywhere soon.</p> <h2>2. The End of the Year</h2> <p>Just because you missed Labor Day doesn't mean you can't still get a great deal. October, November, and December are all good months to shop too, since dealerships are trying to clear out all current year models before the New Year.</p> <p>Waiting until right before the New Year can result in the biggest discount, but it can also leave you with limited choices. Even when we bought the Sorento in 2012, the options for a 2012 model were slim. The dealership had already cleared out almost all of its 2012 inventory.</p> <h2>3. After a Huge Model Redesign</h2> <p>If the car you have your eye on has a significant model redesign, then the current model should be at a huge discount. Just make sure that you know the reasons for the huge change. Is the redesign for appearance reasons or was it to fix a number of recalled safety issues?</p> <p>I strongly recommend getting a one month pass for <a href="https://ec.consumerreports.org/ec/cro/order.htm?INTKEY=I57HLT0">ConsumerReports.org</a> for $6.95. Consumer Reports makes it simple to research car models, common problems with certain models, and recalls. It was Consumer Reports that swayed us from getting another model that had a lot of issues.</p> <h2>4. The End of the Day at the End of Month</h2> <p>If you can go to the dealership at the end of the day on the last day of the month, you have a better chance at saving money, even if there are no rebates or incentives available. Many salesmen need to meet a certain quota by the end of the month, which could put you in a great negotiating position. Plus, some salesmen are willing to lose money on a few cars if it means they will qualify for a special bonus.</p> <p>Sundays have also been proven to be a day of better discounts, especially to buying a car on Friday or Saturday. For example, going in Sunday, October 30 this year might be an opportune time to get a good deal. Sellers know they won't get many buyers on Halloween, and they still have to meet certain numbers before the month ends.</p> <p>If you do want to buy a car at the end of the day, try picking out the car and test driving it ahead of time. This way you won't be trying to look at prices and check for issues in the dark. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-things-car-salesmen-dont-want-you-to-know?ref=seealso">17 Things Car Salesmen Don't Want You to Know</a>)</p> <h2>5. Black Friday</h2> <p>Car dealerships have jumped on the bandwagon when it comes to Black Friday deals. So instead of hitting up the mall for Black Friday shopping, visit your local dealership. The best part is that you do not have to wake up early.</p> <p>It is best to test drive and look at cars ahead of the sale so that you don't feel rushed or pressured. Black Friday is built upon shopping hype and impulse buys, which are not needed when you are considering a large purchase.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-eneriz">Ashley Eneriz</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-you-can-score-a-great-deal-on-a-new-car">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/for-the-best-deals-of-the-year-shop-labor-day-and-skip-black-friday">For the Best Deals of the Year, Shop Labor Day and Skip Black Friday</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-magic-words-to-say-to-get-the-best-new-car-price">10 Magic Words to Say to Get the Best New Car Price</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/car-buying-part-1-going-for-broker">Car Buying Part 1 - Going For Broker.</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-new-car-costs-the-dealer-is-hiding-from-you">10 New Car Costs the Dealer Is Hiding From You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-outlet-shopping-hacks-that-will-save-you-big">10 Outlet Shopping Hacks That Will Save You Big</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation Shopping black fridays dealerships discounts end of year labor day new car sales vehicles Wed, 12 Oct 2016 10:30:08 +0000 Ashley Eneriz 1810489 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Ways to Earn Extra Money With Your Car http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-earn-extra-money-with-your-car <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-ways-to-earn-extra-money-with-your-car" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_87220579_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="side jobs you can do with your car" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Your car is an asset in a number of ways. It can also be the perfect tool to earn some money on the side. To make the most of your investment, we've covered some of the top ways to earn extra money with your car.</p> <h2>1. Join Uber or Lyft</h2> <p>Driving for <a href="http://uber.7eer.net/c/27771/207645/3437">Uber</a> or Lyft works similarly to driving a taxi, except you get to use your own vehicle and set your own schedule. Lyft claims that you can make up to $35 per hour, while Uber claims that the average driver makes around $19 per hour, and drivers in big cities like New York can earn approximately $90,000 a year (before the cost of insurance and gas).</p> <p>In order to work part-time or full-time for one of these rideshare companies, you will need a clean driving record, insurance, a smartphone, and a newer model car. The signup process is quick and easy, so you can begin making money right away. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-extra-money-driving-for-uber-or-lyft?ref=seealso">How to Earn Extra Money Driving for Uber or Lyft</a>)</p> <h2>2. Wrap Your Car With Paid Advertising</h2> <p>If you aren't attached to the appearance of your vehicle, consider having it wrapped in an advertisement. Companies like <a href="http://www.wrapify.com/">Wrapify</a> and <a href="http://www.carvertise.com/">Carvertise</a> can lease ad space on your car for hundreds of dollars per month. While Forbes estimates that you can make anywhere from $100-$600 per month to use your vehicle as a moving billboard, it will really depend on the service you choose, the size of your car, your daily commute, and where you live. If you drive a lot, park in a high traffic area, or have a larger vehicle, you can expect to make more with car advertisements.</p> <p>Typically, you will agree upon how much of the car will be covered and a certain period of time that the advertisement will be displayed. Then, all you need to do is drive as you normally would.</p> <h2>3. Rent It Out</h2> <p>If you are planning a trip out of town, consider renting your vehicle out for the time you're away. You can rent it to someone needing a vehicle for the time you're gone with sites like <a href="https://turo.com/list-your-car">Turo</a> and <a href="https://www.getaround.com/">Getaround</a>, or you can lease your vehicle to be used on a movie set. Getaround estimates that you can make up to $10,000 a year by a sharing your vehicle when you don't need it.</p> <p>If you have a specialty vehicle or an old vehicle (which will fit a certain time period), you can expect to make more money and get booked on more filming jobs. You can even make money just by parking your car on the set, so that it matches the look or time period the film is shooting for.</p> <h2>4. Sign Up for a Delivery Service</h2> <p>If driving people isn't your thing, consider applying for a food delivery or courier service, like <a href="https://postmates.com/apply">Postmates</a>, <a href="https://www.doordash.com/dasher/apply/">DoorDash</a>, or <a href="https://www.taskrabbit.com/">TaskRabbit</a>. You can accept jobs at will and can pick up and deliver food or items in your area.</p> <p>If you'd rather have a set schedule and more reliable source of income, consider applying at your local pizza store to deliver pizza. If you'd like to take it one step further, you can sign up for a site like <a href="https://www.instacart.com">Instacart</a>, where you can make money grocery shopping for others.</p> <h2>5. Pickup Services</h2> <p>If you have a truck or large vehicle, you can make money picking up large items or even helping people move. Services like <a href="https://www.buddytruk.com/drive/">Buddytruk</a> and GoShare will allow you to <a href="https://www.goshare.co/drivers/">earn up to $61.92 an hour</a> by using your van, truck, or SUV to transport items. You can also use a service like TaskRabbit to charge for the use of your vehicle, as well as for your manpower (for transporting or lifting heavy items).</p> <h2>6. Charge for Carpooling</h2> <p>If you have coworkers that need a ride to work, or children around the neighborhood who could take advantage of carpooling services, consider charging for these services. By charging each rider a small fee for gas, it can cover your gas bill and more. All you'll have to do is take the riders where you were already planning on going anyway.</p> <p>You can also take it one step further and offer airport picks and dropoffs. This will save your friends and family the stress and hassle of driving their own car, and it can help them avoid costly airport parking charges. Keep in mind that anytime you are charging for transportation or carpooling services, you'll need to be mindful of being on time.</p> <h2>7. Offer Driving Lessons</h2> <p>If you have nerves of steel and your stress level can handle it, consider offering driving lessons. You'll need a permit and insurance to get started. Your vehicle will also need to be adjusted to offer safer accommodations for young drivers, so you may only want to consider this if you have an extra vehicle that you don't use often.</p> <h2>Is It Worth It?</h2> <p>The extra cash can cover the cost of gas, or possibly even your car payment. With each of these money-making opportunities, there is no obligation to continue if it doesn't turn out to be very lucrative. If you find that these ideas don't work for you and your vehicle has become more of a costly liability than anything else, then maybe it's time to consider selling your car. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-best-ways-to-sell-your-car?ref=seealso">The 6 Best Ways to Sell Your Car</a>)</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-earn-extra-money-with-your-car">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-more-money-as-an-uber-driver">How to Get a High Rating and Make More Money as an Uber Driver</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-simple-plan-for-saving-up-a-2000-fun-fund">A Simple Plan for Saving Up a $2000 Fun Fund</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-a-side-hustle-can-advance-your-career">8 Ways a Side Hustle Can Advance Your Career</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-great-side-jobs-you-can-do-on-your-bicycle">6 Great Side Jobs You Can Do on Your Bicycle</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-you-can-earn-18-to-25-an-hour-with-amazon-flex">How You Can Earn $18 to $25 an Hour With Amazon Flex</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation Extra Income car delivery food delivery lyft side gig side hustle side jobs Uber Mon, 26 Sep 2016 10:00:06 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1799076 at http://www.wisebread.com 9 Ways Life Is Wonderful When You Swap Your Car for a Bike http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-life-is-wonderful-when-you-swap-your-car-for-a-bike <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-ways-life-is-wonderful-when-you-swap-your-car-for-a-bike" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_riding_bike_62106672.jpg" alt="Woman loving life after swapping her car for a bike" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Have you ever thought about ditching your car and finding a new way to get around? Making your bicycle your best friend may be the smartest move you can make to save money, burn calories, and generally improve your life.</p> <p>If you're searching for a reason to pull the trigger on the all-bike lifestyle, consider these nine ways that life is an amazing when you eschew the car. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cities-for-going-car-free?ref=seealso">5 Best Cities for Going Car-Free</a>)</p> <h2>1. You'll Save Money on Gas</h2> <p>Okay, so let's say you have a 30-mile roundtrip commute. And let's say you're spending $2.25 per gallon on gasoline. If you get 30 miles per gallon on your car, you're spending about $2.25 a day on gasoline. That's $11.25 a week, or more than $500 per year. Ditch your car, and that's money back in your pocket. And best of all, when gas prices spike, your commuting expenses will stay the same.</p> <h2>2. You'll Save Money on Insurance</h2> <p>No car means nothing to insure. And this means money saved. The average cost to insure even a basic sedan was $1,222 per year in 2015, according to AAA. That's a significant chunk of change back in your pocket.</p> <h2>3. You'll Save Money on Maintenance</h2> <p>A bike might need some repairs and a tuneup now and then, but the cost of this work is nothing compared to a car. AAA reports that the average <a href="http://newsroom.aaa.com/auto/your-driving-costs/">driver spends $792 annually</a> on car maintenance. Add that to the cost of gas and insurance, and you can see the thousands of dollars saved by ditching the car and going for the bike.</p> <h2>4. You'll See More</h2> <p>Whenever I ride my bike, I always end up noticing new things about my surroundings. It might be a new small business in my town, renovations to an old home, or a park in need of some cleanup. It's a rather nice feeling to see your environment unfurl itself in front of you as you ride. It's so much easier to see what's around you when you're not enclosed inside a vehicle.</p> <h2>5. You'll Shop More Locally</h2> <p>One downside to riding a bike everywhere is that you obviously can't haul a lot of stuff. This means no long trips to the Super Walmart for groceries. But, it also means that the shopping you do will be done locally, possibly to the benefit of smaller, independent stores. Proponents of the Shop Local movement claim that if you spend $100 at local small stores, $68 will stay in your community, compared to $43 for big chains.</p> <h2>6. Exercise!</h2> <p>There's no question that cycling is great for your health. According to an online calculator from bicycling.com, a one-hour bike ride at a moderate pace can lead to <a href="http://www.bicycling.com/training/weight-loss/cycling-calories-burned-calculator">more than 500 calories burned</a>, or even 1,000 if you really push the pace. Biking will help you build leg muscles, but is also good for the back and abdomen. And it's generally seen as lower impact than running. One study even suggested that women who bike to work were<a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22525983">significantly less likely to fracture their wrists.</a></p> <h2>7. You'll Look Forward to Going to Work</h2> <p>Who gets excited about sitting in a car in traffic, or stuffing yourself onto a crowded subway car? By incorporating a bike into your commute, you're incorporating an enjoyable activity into your daily drudgery.</p> <h2>8. Your Employer Might Pay You</h2> <p>Good employers want their workers to be healthy, so many will incentivize bike commuting by offering cash back as a fringe benefit. The IRS allows employers to reimburse bicycle commuters up to $20 per month for bike-related expenses, such as storage, repairs, a helmet, or the purchase of a bike itself.</p> <h2>9. You Save Time</h2> <p>You might assume that biking will take longer than driving. But this isn't always the case, research shows. Kiplinger reported that half of the commuting population in the U.S. <a href="http://www.kiplinger.com/article/saving/T012-C000-S001-cut-commuting-costs-by-biking-to-work.html#A2M2E7fbT47UL1Mm.99">travels five miles or less to work</a>, and that riding a bike that distance can often be faster than driving. As a cyclist, you have access to trails, bike lanes, and side roads that will allow you to avoid drivers and traffic jams.</p> <p><em>Have you traded in your car for a bike? How has your life improved? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tim-lemke">Tim Lemke</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-life-is-wonderful-when-you-swap-your-car-for-a-bike">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cities-for-going-car-free">5 Best Cities for Going Car-Free</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/five-reasons-why-i-love-public-transportation">Five Reasons Why I Love Public Transportation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/did-your-car-break-down-check-for-recalled-parts-and-fix-it-for-free">Did your car break down? Check for recalled parts and fix it for free!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/when-to-drop-collision-coverage-on-your-car">When to drop collision coverage on your car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/giving-up-your-car-may-be-easier-than-you-think">Giving Up Your Car May Be Easier Than You Think</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Cars and Transportation bike bike commute biking car car commute commuting environment exercise saving transportation Mon, 01 Aug 2016 09:00:11 +0000 Tim Lemke 1762106 at http://www.wisebread.com Is Uber Saving or Costing You Money? http://www.wisebread.com/is-uber-saving-or-costing-you-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/is-uber-saving-or-costing-you-money" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_88284853_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="hailing a cab: is it cheaper than uber?" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Uber is more than just convenient; it can actually save you time and money. Everyday commuters are saving hundreds of dollars per month by foregoing their car in favor of rideshare apps like Uber. Businesses are also <a href="https://newsroom.uber.com/uber-for-business-saves-companies-1k-per-employee/">saving money by using Uber</a> for their business transportation needs, rather than hiring a limo or expensive business vehicle for their employees.</p> <p>Uber can also be safer than a taxi because it's all managed through the app, so you can always track your driver and leave reviews for them later on. When it comes to largely populated cities like Manhattan, simply ordering an Uber through the app (rather than fighting with people to catch a cab) can be very convenient and save you a lot of time and frustration. You can even automatically pay using the app, so there's no need to carry cash or worry about paying at the end of the ride.</p> <p>But if you're using Uber often enough, is it actually saving you money? Or is it draining your bank account? Let's investigate.</p> <h2>What Does Uber Cost?</h2> <p>The cost of Uber depends on which car you choose, the time of day, and how far you will be going. For instance, if you choose a traditional UberX vehicle, you will be charged per mile and per minute with a small booking fee of $1.65. If you choose an SUV, the charges per mile will be higher, as well as a base fare of $15, which will cost you a lot more for both short and long rides. A luxury vehicle is even more expensive and the base fare is $20.</p> <p>For an accurate fare quote, you can either use the app or a site like <a href="http://uberestimate.com/">UberEstimate.com</a>. You simply put in your pickup and drop-off locations and it will give you an accurate price range. You aren't required to tip, and Uber does not offer the capabilities to tip on the app, but your driver will usually accept a cash tip, if you feel like it.</p> <h2>Watch Out for Surge Pricing</h2> <p>Surge pricing occurs when the demand for Uber is higher, such as on the weekends, around holidays, and in inclement weather. The cost of your commute will be higher thanks to surge pricing, which can go up to eight times the normal rate. In these cases, you likely won't save any money using Uber and should instead choose a rental car, public transportation, or even a taxi.</p> <h2>Try UberPool</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5170/uber.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>If you want to save even more money, consider using UberPool. With UberPool, you share a ride with another person who is going on a similar route as you. Then, you split the cost of the trip to save more money. While this will save you more in the end, it won't split the cost in half, so if you don't feel comfortable riding with another passenger, don't bother, as you won't be saving <em>that </em>much.</p> <h2>The Costs of Car Ownership</h2> <p>The average monthly payment for a new car has <a href="https://www.experianplc.com/media/news/2015/q2-2015-safm-pt-2/">risen to $483</a>. Just think about what you could do with $483+ extra per month. When it comes to owning a car, there are a number of other expenses beyond the monthly car payment. For instance, there may be a weekly need to fill up on gas and a monthly car wash, at minimum. You will also have to pay for car insurance, registration fees, car maintenance, and car repairs from time to time. The occasional car accident and parking tickets can also add a lot to the cost of car ownership. These basic and unexpected costs can quickly add up to an astronomical amount. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-cut-car-ownership-costs?ref=seealso">How to Cut Car Ownership Costs</a>)</p> <p>According to a test conducted by Business Insider, one person's <a href="http://www.businessinsider.com/how-using-uber-and-lyft-saves-me-money-2015-2">monthly cost of car ownership</a> totaled more than $1,500 in San Francisco, while the cost of public transportation and Uber rides only cost $572 per month. This is an extreme example, as most people won't need to spend nearly this much on transportation, but the savings are obvious.</p> <p>As a general basis, AAA estimates that the average person will spend <a href="http://exchange.aaa.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/Your-Driving-Costs-infographic-2014.png">$8,876 per year</a> for a new sedan in an average city. To drive the same average amount using Uber, the cost would be <a href="https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/insurance/avoid-car-insurance-costs-lyft-uber/">$17,095 per year</a>, which is about twice the cost of owning your own car. For this reason, Business Insider recommends using UberX if you drive less than <a href="http://www.businessinsider.com/is-uber-cheaper-than-owning-a-car-2014-9">9,480 miles per year</a>. If you drive more than that, Uber will actually cost you more in the end.</p> <h2>Paying for Parking</h2> <p>If you live in a large city like San Francisco, Los Angeles, or New York, you may also need to pay for parking, both on a monthly basis and whenever you are enjoying a night out. If you're on vacation, your hotel may also charge for parking, particularly if you're staying in the city center. Valet parking, and even self-park options, often total around $25 per night, and even more if those garages charge every time you enter.</p> <h2>How Often Do You Need a Car?</h2> <p>When it comes to owning a car or taking an Uber, you will almost always spend more on the costs of a car, unless you need a car on a daily basis. For instance, if you work from home and don't need a vehicle everyday, then paying for an Uber only when you need it can be a huge money saver. On the other hand, if you travel to work everyday, or live in the suburbs and need to travel for your daily needs, you may need a vehicle of your own.</p> <h2>Who Benefits Most From Uber?</h2> <p>Uber is a great alternative if you are living in a large city and don't need a car on a daily basis. It is also ideal if you don't currently have the credit or funds to purchase a car. On the other hand, even if you have a car, Uber can be a great option for a night you plan on drinking. Rather than trying to hail a taxi or depending on a friend to be the designated driver, you can simply use your app and an Uber will come to you when you're ready to go home.</p> <p>For quick trips to the airport, Uber can also be ideal. For instance, the cost of parking at LAX can range from $5.95-$30 per day, depending on how far you are willing to park from the terminal, which can really add to the total cost of your trip. According to Time Magazine, if your longest round-trip is the airport to the hotel, <a href="http://time.com/money/4299690/uber-rental-cars-which-cheaper/">Uber can save you money</a>. If you are simply taking a short trip and won't be driving too far out of the immediate surroundings, Uber will be your most affordable, and most convenient, option.</p> <h2>Is a Taxi More Affordable?</h2> <p>According to MIT's Technology Review, <a href="https://www.technologyreview.com/s/535886/data-mining-reveals-when-a-yellow-taxi-is-cheaper-than-uber/">taxis are more affordable</a> for rides below $35. However, this all depends on where you live. In Canadian cities, you will almost always save money on Uber, compared to a taxi. To be sure, use an app like <a href="http://www.openstreetcab.com/">OpenStreetCab</a>, <a href="http://www.priceride.com/">PriceRide</a>, or <a href="https://ride.guru/">RideGuru</a> to determine whether Uber, Lyft, or a taxi would be more affordable for your next trip.</p> <h2>When Is It Time for a Rental?</h2> <p>If you will need to use Uber from more than one consecutive day, you need to take a long trip, or you need Uber during surge pricing times, then a rental car may be the best way to go. In most cases, having a car at your disposal for both long and short trips is the most convenient option. However, in most cases, using Uber for infrequent traveling needs is your best bet. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/save-on-car-rentals-with-these-10-easy-hacks?ref=seealso">Save on Car Rentals With These 10 Easy Hacks</a>)</p> <h2>Promo Codes</h2> <p>Each app, like Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar, offers their own promo codes, so it's in your best interest to try them all out with unique promo codes. You can also send invites to your friends and when they use your link or code to sign up, you will earn more free rides, so it's worth trying. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-score-free-rides-on-uber-lyft-and-sidecar?ref=seealso">How to Score Free Rides on Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar</a>)</p> <h2>Alternative Options</h2> <p>Uber and Lyft have transformed the taxi game. There are now also alternative transportation options to improve your ability to get around, such as <a href="https://www.getaround.com/">GetAround</a> (peer-to-peer car sharing), <a href="http://skurt.com/">Skurt</a> (rental cars are delivered and picked up from your location), <a href="http://www.carzup.com/">CarzUp</a> (all rental cars in one location), and <a href="http://www.swapalease.com/">Swapalease</a> (lease transfer options with no down payments). Make sure to compare the options and prices in your area before deciding on any one particular mode of transportation.</p> <p><em>Have you lived a month or more on Uber? What have your experiences been with popular rideshare apps? Please share your thoughts in the comments!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/andrea-cannon">Andrea Cannon</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/is-uber-saving-or-costing-you-money">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-more-money-as-an-uber-driver">How to Get a High Rating and Make More Money as an Uber Driver</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-what-to-do-with-a-totaled-car">My 2016 Budget Challenge: What to Do With a Totaled Car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-score-free-rides-on-uber-lyft-and-sidecar">How to Score Free Rides on Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-brilliant-tips-from-smart-mom-rich-mom">4 Brilliant Tips From &quot;Smart Mom, Rich Mom&quot;</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-earn-extra-money-driving-for-uber-or-lyft">How to Earn Extra Money Driving for Uber or Lyft</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Cars and Transportation frugal living lyft ridesharing ridesharing app saving money surge pricing Uber uber pool Wed, 20 Jul 2016 10:30:10 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1755639 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Best Cities for Going Car-Free http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cities-for-going-car-free <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-best-cities-for-going-car-free" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_72593117_LARGE.jpg" alt="going car free is easy in these cities" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There's ample evidence that walkable neighborhoods breed <a href="http://www.citylab.com/design/2014/12/growing-evidence-shows-walkability-is-good-for-you-and-for-cities/383612/">safer, healthier, and more democratic constituencies</a>. And even in cities with high levels of smog &mdash; here's looking at you, Los Angeles &mdash; studies show that the <a href="http://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/walking-and-cycling-good-for-health-even-in-cities-with-higher-levels-of-air-pollution">health benefits of walking</a> or cycling or recreation or as a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-make-the-most-of-your-morning-commute">means of commuting</a> far outweigh the negative health risks associated with breathing in air pollution. What's more, when city dwellers opt to walk or cycle instead of relying on gas guzzlers, overall air pollution levels can be reduced. It's a win-win-win. You don't need a car to get around these U.S. cities.</p> <h2>1. Boston</h2> <p>Nicknamed America's Walking City, Boston's relatively small footprint is dense with small neighborhoods, each with a unique character and a smattering of restaurants, shops, and convenience stores. That is to say that most Bostonians can complete their daily errands without ever putting the key in the ignition. Boston is also a city where owning a car, in many cases, costs more than it's worth. Take, for example, these<a href="https://www.bostonglobe.com/business/2016/06/30/got-these-back-bay-parking-spots-could-yours/BOvFjiiID0xWUJtQZxjdNM/story.html"> tandem, uncovered parking spaces</a> in the high-end Beacon Hill neighborhood. For about a half million dollars, they can be yours. No, this isn't a one-time fluke in pricing. That's actually the going rate. A pair of parking spots on the same street <a href="https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2015/11/03/look-back-some-priciest-parking-spots-boston/tIPhO225Vv5Mrdxy8aVYjJ/story.html?p1=Article_Related_Box_Article">sold for $560,000</a> at an auction in 2013.</p> <h2>2. New York</h2> <p>The city that never sleeps &mdash; Manhattan, in particular &mdash; is as pedestrian-friendly as they come. With sidewalks, bike lanes, buses, and subway routes galore, New York brings amenities such as markets, shops, workplaces, medical centers, and gyms in close proximity to the apartments and condos where people live. The city also has easy street crossings and long block lengths, making for more pleasurable pedestrian routes. There is, however, <a href="http://www1.nyc.gov/assets/planning/download/pdf/plans-studies/sustainable-communities/bmn/bronx_metro_report/walkability.pdf">room for improvement</a>. Manhattan is by far the most walkable of New York's boroughs, but it accounts for just 8% of the city's population. Other boroughs aren't actually all that walkable. In the Bronx, neighborhood decline and disinvestment in public transit has made walking around some neighborhoods difficult and less enticing. In truth, the real walkability winner here is Manhattan, and not all of New York City.</p> <h2>3. Washington, D.C.</h2> <p>Much of the nation's capital has walkable zones where residential and retail spaces are in close proximity. And, unlike New York, these zones are evenly distributed between downtown areas and the suburbs. That means it's not just the <a href="http://www.archdaily.com/521438/washington-d-c-the-most-walkable-city-in-the-us">heart of the city that's walkable</a>, but the outskirts, as well.</p> <h2>4. San Francisco</h2> <p>The Golden Gate City was built on 42 hills &mdash; terrain that can make for treacherous gear shifting. And while all those hills will do a number on your calf muscles, there's truly no better way to get around San Francisco's densely populated districts. That's because a quarter of the 49 square-mile city's office, retail, and multi-family rental space is located within the bounds of <a href="http://www.smartgrowthamerica.org/foot-traffic-ahead-2016/">walkable neighborhoods</a>. And while it's possible to break out of these neighborhood walkability zones and <a href="http://www.sfwalkingman.com/">trek the entire city by foot</a>, it's not exactly the fastest or most practical method of getting around. Alas, every city has its walkability limits.</p> <h2>5. Detroit</h2> <p>Oddly enough, you can get around Motor City just fine by foot &mdash; no motor required. In fact, these days <a href="http://wdet.org/posts/2016/06/20/83328-going-motorless-in-the-motor-city/">pedestrian-friendly projects</a> are sprouting up all over Detroit. And it's not just for the sake of recreation. About a quarter of all households citywide lack access to a motor vehicle. New walking path projects can help many in this demographic commute to and from the places they need to go, such as work, the grocery store, and school. And since you can't walk everywhere, new bike paths are surfacing, as well. Whereas Detroit had no bike lanes a decade ago, there are now nearly 200 of them.</p> <p><em>What other cities are good for going car-free? Share with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/brittany-lyte">Brittany Lyte</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cities-for-going-car-free">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-life-is-wonderful-when-you-swap-your-car-for-a-bike">9 Ways Life Is Wonderful When You Swap Your Car for a Bike</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-hidden-advantages-to-getting-rid-of-your-car">7 Hidden Advantages to Getting Rid of Your Car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-good-life-on-less-energy-even-in-the-us">The good life on less energy--even in the US</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/did-your-car-break-down-check-for-recalled-parts-and-fix-it-for-free">Did your car break down? Check for recalled parts and fix it for free!</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-bicycle-lights">The 5 Best Bicycle Lights</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Cars and Transportation bike car car-free city environmentally friendly public transportation transportation u.s. cities walking Wed, 20 Jul 2016 09:30:37 +0000 Brittany Lyte 1755541 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Tell If a Car Service Plan Is Worth It http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-tell-if-a-car-service-plan-is-worth-it <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-tell-if-a-car-service-plan-is-worth-it" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_73183307_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="is a car service plan worth it?" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Considering the purchase of an <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-extended-warranties-ever-a-good-deal">extended warranty for a vehicle</a> can lead to serious mockery from the frugal. Everyone <em>knows </em>that dealerships tack large markups to these policies, extracting hundreds of extra dollars from customers. Consumer Reports warns that more than half of people who buy an extended warranty never use it, and even the minority that do use it end up, on average, spending more on the warranty than they save on repairs.</p> <p>But suppose you are able to purchase a warranty at a <a href="http://www.edmunds.com/car-buying/secrets-of-an-ace-negotiator-part-ii.html">low markup over the dealer's wholesale price</a>? Should you buy a warranty if it's a great deal?</p> <p>I recently found myself in this position after getting offered a price on a Toyota Extra Care Vehicle Service Agreement so low that a friend who worked at a different dealership urged me to snap it up. But still, I worried. Because even at a good price, coverage that I never used would still be money down the drain.</p> <p>I wished for a crystal ball that would tell me whether the used car I was buying &mdash; a late model Highlander Hybrid &mdash; would ever need the services covered by this plan. Seeing the future is impossible, of course. But with some digging, I found resources that helped me make an educated guess by answering the following questions.</p> <h2>How Long Would the Warranty Cover My Car?</h2> <p>The dealer was offering me an eight-year, 100,000-mile warranty, which sounded like a lot of coverage. But when I looked closer, I realized that the mileage limit was based on the odometer's mileage, not the miles I drove. Since the car already had about 60,000 miles on it, that meant this warranty would cover 40,000 miles of my driving. And since the certified preowned car came with a free one-year warranty, the VSA, if I bought it, it would kick in on year two. Assuming that the car would hit 100,000 miles after four years of driving, this meant that the supposed eight-year policy would really cover me for about three years. I used this information to calculate the cost per year.</p> <p>If you're not sure if a vehicle you're buying is already covered by a warranty, you can check by calling a dealership of that brand, or by getting a VIN-based report from CarFax or CarMD.</p> <h2>What Is the Rate for the Car I'm Buying?</h2> <p>When buying a VSA, it's like betting against the company that your car will break down. Of course, the carmaker and dealership know more about the car's reliability record than you do, so it's a bet that's stacked against you. However, it would help to know how likely it is that you'll need to repair your car during the warranty period, and fortunately, that information is available.</p> <p>One step you can take is to consult the reliability rating of your car's make and model on ConsumerReports.com. My particular car got high marks in this area, which was a strike against buying the warranty. In surveys, Consumer Reports has found that owners of more reliable vehicle makes tend to be less satisfied with their purchases of warranty plans.</p> <p>You can get more specific by ordering a Vehicle History and Title Report from CarMD, a company that sells a diagnostic tool that plugs into the car to tell you why the check engine light is on. You can order a report by typing the VIN into <a href="https://www.carmd.com/wp/how-to-run-a-health-and-history-report-without-a-tool/">CarMD's site</a>, and in addition to useful information about the car's history, CarMD will draw upon its large database to tell you whether a check-engine light repair is expected within the next year. CarMD showed me a report for a car with the same make, model, and mileage as the one I was buying, and the report indicated that no such repair was expected in the next 12 months.</p> <p>That was another strike against buying the VSA.</p> <p>What repairs can cause that light to go on? About 85% of the systems in the car, says CarMD spokeswoman Kristin Brocoff.</p> <p>&quot;It's not just a handful of parts. The car's check engine light can alert you to anything as small as a loose gas cap and serious as engine failure,&quot; she said.</p> <h2>What Are Car Repairs Likely to Cost Me?</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5170/reviewing_car_service_plan.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>CarMD can help answer this question too, using data from repair shops nationwide. The vehicle history includes a five-year cost of ownership estimate, which includes fuel, maintenance, repairs, insurance, and depreciation. For my vehicle of choice, Brocoff broke down the $50,433 cost listed on the report, and revealed that repairs over the next five years are expected to run $1,689.18, or $337.80 per year. This was more than the per-year price of my warranty, so, if all those expected repairs were covered by the warranty I was offered, maybe I would come out ahead by buying the warranty.</p> <p>Another way CarMD can help you predict your car's future is its regularly updated <a href="https://www.carmd.com/wp/vehicle-health-index-introduction/2016-carmd-vehicle-health-index/">Vehicle Health Index</a> reports, which are free dispatches on the cost and incidence of repairs for <em>all</em> cars. For instance, the 2016 VHI says that the typical &quot;check engine light&quot; repair in my region, the West, costs $403.42. Knowing that, I know I would have to get hit with at least two such repairs that were covered by my warranty to make the coverage pay off.</p> <h2>Will the Warranty Even Cover the Expected Repairs?</h2> <p>Up until this point, things have looked good for buying the warranty, because the data predicts that I'd spend a few hundred dollars a year on car repairs. But this is where things get head-scratchy. Some potential repairs would be covered by two <em>other </em>warranties that would come free with my car, and those that aren't might not be covered by the VSA, either.</p> <p>Like many certified used vehicles, my car came with a limited powertrain warranty, which covers &quot;major engine, transmission components, and all internally lubricated parts,&quot; up until my odometer hits 100,000 miles, i.e., for about the same amount of time as the VSA they want to sell me. Because it's a hybrid, Toyota is required by law to also provide a warranty for the hybrid battery, covering about the same period. So, only repairs that don't involve the powertrain or the hybrid battery could potentially be covered by the VSA. Then, of course, the VSA has a specific list of components it covers, and anything not listed there would cost me out of pocket.</p> <p>How do you know what parts are most likely to break? Again, I got help from CarMD's 2016 Vehicle Health Index, which told me that the <a href="https://www.carmd.com/wp/vehicle-health-index-introduction/2016-carmd-vehicle-health-index/#stats">most common check-engine-related repair</a> for all cars was replacing the oxygen sensor (average cost $250), followed closely by replacing the catalytic converter ($1,153!), and replacing ignition coils and spark plugs ($390 for both). Searching for these repairs on the list of items covered by&nbsp;<a href="https://www.sc.toyotafinancial.com/web/tfs/pub/contents/vsa/TFS_VSA_Platinum_VSA_eBrochure.pdf">Toyota's powertrain warranty and the Toyota Extra Care Platinum VSA</a>, I found the O2 sensor listed on neither, the catalytic converter and ignition coils listed on the VSA, and spark plugs listed on neither. The high cost and high ranking of catalytic converter replacement was definitely a point for buying the warranty; then again, even at the second most likely repair, this job only accounted for about 7% of all car repairs. And despite all the data I'd read, I could not really predict how likely it was that my car would need a new catalytic converter during the warranty coverage.</p> <p>After investing multiple hours researching the likelihood of needing the offered VSA, I came to the frustrating conclusion that buying it or not buying it was basically a toss up.</p> <p>My educated guess based on my research is that my car may need one or two of the smaller covered repairs during the coverage period, but that the out-of-pocket cost would be close to what I paid for the warranty. On the other hand, reading CarMD's reports made me feel more secure that the odds of a really expensive repair hitting me in the next few years was probably not very high.</p> <p>One actionable thing I learned from this experience is that if you opt to buy a VSA, you should absolutely not pay the first price offered by the dealership. My dealership's finance guy first offered me the plan at twice the price he eventually ended up offering it at. All it took to cut the price in half was telling him that I didn't want to buy it.</p> <p><em>Have you purchased a similar warranty on your vehicle? Share your experience with us!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-tell-if-a-car-service-plan-is-worth-it">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-much-does-it-cost-every-time-you-get-into-your-car">How Much Does it Cost Every Time you Get Into Your Car?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/when-to-drop-collision-coverage-on-your-car">When to drop collision coverage on your car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ask-the-readers">Ask the Readers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-2016-budget-challenge-what-to-do-with-a-totaled-car">My 2016 Budget Challenge: What to Do With a Totaled Car</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/repair-the-car-or-spend-the-cash">Repair the Car or Spend the Cash?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation car car insurance car maintenance car repair car service plan mechanic saving money service plan Mon, 18 Jul 2016 09:30:37 +0000 Carrie Kirby 1753054 at http://www.wisebread.com