Cars and Transportation http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/4812/all en-US Are You Wasting $68,000 on Gas? http://www.wisebread.com/are-you-wasting-68000-on-gas <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/are-you-wasting-68000-on-gas" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000048349718_Large.jpg" alt="wasting money on his commute" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="126" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Commuting to work can be a real hassle, but have you ever added up what it's costing you financially?</p> <p>With gas prices on the low side right now, it's easy to lose sight of the cost of driving. But if you have a commute and choose to drive, you may be losing out on hundreds of dollars a year and potentially <em>hundreds of thousands of dollars</em> over the course of your working life.</p> <p>How is that possible? Well, let's crunch some numbers.</p> <p>According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the mean <a href="https://www.census.gov/hhes/commuting/files/2012/Paper-Poster_Megacommuting%20in%20the%20US.pdf">commuting distance in America</a> is about 38 miles. There are some parts of the country where commuters travel much further, and some mega commuters are known to average more than 200 miles each day.</p> <p>Let's assume you're an average person driving that average 38 miles to and from work each day. And let's also assume you're paying an average amount for gas, which is currently about $2 per gallon. If you drive a car that gets 30 miles per gallon, you're spending about $2.50 a day on gas, or about $12.50 a week. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-the-high-cost-of-cheap-gas-hurts-you?ref=seealso">This Is How the High Cost of Cheap Gas Hurts You</a>)</p> <p>Assuming you may take a couple weeks off throughout the year from driving, this adds up to $625 annually.</p> <p>That's a nice chunk of change, but it's not the end of the story.</p> <h2>Compound Interest Is Your Friend</h2> <p>Having an extra $625 in your pocket at the end of the year is great. But you could actually end up with a lot more, without doing a thing.</p> <p>If you put that extra money away in a run-of-the-mill savings account with a 1% interest rate, that could be $631 by year's end. Okay, so just $6. No big deal. But extrapolate that out to 30 years and you end up with $842. And if you put in $625 every year during that period, it's a whopping $22,000, thanks in large part to interest compounding on itself.</p> <h2>Invest and Build True Wealth</h2> <p>So now we're at $22,000. That seems like a nice addition to the nest egg. But imagine tripling that total.</p> <p>If you take $625 annually and place it in an index fund or another investment that mirrors the broader stock market, you can boost your savings significantly. Assuming a typical annual return of 7% from the S&amp;P 500, <em>you'll end up with nearly $68,000 at the end of 30 years</em><strong>. </strong></p> <p>That's $68,000 by not spending money on gas, even with prices as low as they are now. And that's just for an average commuter. Someone who drives 60 miles round trip for work could save $108,000 over 30 years. A long-distance commuter who goes 90 miles a day could save $163,000.</p> <h2>Total Commuting Costs</h2> <p>Keep in mind, too, that gas is not the only expenditure when you commute. The Citi ThankYou Commuter Index last year said the average American <a href="http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/citi-thankyou-premier-commuter-index-reveals-us-consumers-spend-an-average-of-2600-per-year-on-their-commute-300095179.html?tc=eml_cleartime">spent $2,600 a year commuting</a>. This includes people who might pay for public transit, and also factors in the cost of repairs and depreciation on your car.</p> <p>Using the same calculations as above, that $2,600 could turn into $3,504 over 30 years if placed in a savings account. And $2,600 placed annually in an index fund could turn into $281,000 within three decades.</p> <p>Keep all of this in mind when figuring out how you'll get to work, what job to take, and whether you can get away with working from home or even being self-employed.</p> <p><em>How much are you spending on a daily commute to work? Share with us 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/tim-lemke">Tim Lemke</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-you-wasting-68000-on-gas">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-7"> <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-rich-youd-be-if-you-stopped-driving">Here&#039;s How Rich You&#039;d Be If You Stopped Driving</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/this-is-how-the-high-cost-of-cheap-gas-hurts-you">This Is How the High Cost of Cheap Gas Hurts You</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/behind-the-times-i-learn-about-keep-the-change">Behind the Times - I learn about Keep the Change</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/save-gas-dont-make-left-hand-turns">Save gas; don&#039;t make left-hand turns.</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-benefits-of-a-walkable-neighborhood">The Benefits of a Walkable Neighborhood</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Cars and Transportation Investment compound interest gas index funds interest savings Mon, 11 Apr 2016 09:30:25 +0000 Tim Lemke 1687442 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Ways to Make the Most of Your Morning Commute http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-make-the-most-of-your-morning-commute <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-ways-to-make-the-most-of-your-morning-commute" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000047834616_Large.jpg" alt="making the most of her morning commute" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Unless you work right down the street from your office, or you work from home, then you are forced to suffer through a daily commute. If you commute by car, you're probably spending a decent amount on gas, as well as adding wear and tear to your vehicle. And if you're convinced that car commuting is the only way for you, then <a href="http://www.commutesolutions.com/commute-cost-calculator/">calculating the cost of your commute</a> might just be enough to make you change your mind.</p> <p>Commuting via public transportation isn't that much fun, either. It might save you gas money, but you're swapping that for longer travel times and being surrounded by crowds of strangers. But what if you could make some extra cash during that travel time?</p> <p>Here are six smart ways to boost your income, as well as saving on the equivalent journey by car. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-financial-moves-you-can-make-during-your-commute?ref=seealso">10 Financial Moves You Can Make During Your Commute</a>)</p> <h2>1. Buy and Sell on eBay</h2> <p>You've got clutter or unwanted items to clear away. You're thinking of selling them through eBay or a similar site, but getting around to listing sales is exactly the sort of fiddly task that often gets pushed to the bottom of the to-do list.</p> <p>Switch your mindset and use listing your spare stuff as a way to turn dead commute time into an earner. Make sure you have quality photos of your items taken in advance and use the commute to research the market, perfect your listing, and respond to bidder questions. For bonus points, use the 10-day listing option on a Thursday, and bidders will have two full, high-traffic weekends to view and bid.</p> <h2>2. Write</h2> <p>If you enjoy writing, then why not use your commute time to develop a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/22-websites-that-will-pay-you-to-write-for-them">freelance writing side hustle</a>? Online magazines and blogs frequently look for freelance contributions from subject matter experts, so pick your niche and find the sites that fit. Many have a &quot;Write For Us&quot; page which explains their freelance contributor policy, to help you figure out how to move forward. Don't think too hard about how to commercialize this sideline, though, just get writing to perfect your craft and find your voice.</p> <p>Scoring paid work is easier if you have already developed an online presence, which can be done by writing your own blog or contributing articles for free to high traffic sites who will credit you. It's not going to turn you into an overnight millionaire, but can be a fun way to explore your creative side while making a little cash.</p> <h2>3. Coach Online</h2> <p>The advent of digital coaching means that not only can you access the services of a coach much more easily, you only need a smartphone to become a paid coach in your area of expertise.</p> <p><a href="http://coach.me">Coach.me</a> is a goal tracking and coaching app that is forging a new future for digital coaching. And people who have already succeeded in achieving a particular goal can coach others to replicate their success.</p> <p>After taking a digital coaching certificate, you can get started in text-based coaching, creating a profile page to attract clients, and getting access to the platform's marketing support. In return, Coach.me takes a cut from coaching earnings. Check out the competition, as some goals have many active coaches already. But with app users wanting support with everything from diet advice to language learning, you could cut your own niche here, and communicate with your clients during your commute on the bus.</p> <h2>4. Craft and Sell<strong> </strong></h2> <p>This one might not work so well for you if your chosen creative expression is monumental masonry or cordon bleu cookery. However, if your passion is knitting, crochet, embroidery, graphic design, manga drawing, cartoons, or anything else that can feasibly fit in your bag, then use your commute time to create and sell.</p> <p>Etsy is the classic marketplace for crafted goods, although eBay or similar sites could also be good places for selling your stuff. Start small and sell to family and friends, or attend a craft fair where you can get feedback from your customers and nail down your pricing and packaging. Then widen your market by putting your goods online and building a customer base using social media &mdash; which you can also attend to while sitting on the train.</p> <h2>5. Get Qualified</h2> <p>If the creative side hustle isn't your thing, then how about using your commute to achieve a relevant qualification that you can use as leverage to get a pay raise? Or take a course in something completely different that could be a springboard for a whole new venture?</p> <p>Even if you're still stuck driving your car to work, you can use the time to stretch your brain by listening to podcasts. Try <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-money-podcasts">financial information podcasts</a> to help you manage your money better, or business and leadership topics to help you make a real impact in your day job. If a podcast can give you the negotiating tips you need to score a raise, then it's time well invested!</p> <h2>6. Do Your Homework</h2> <p>Some people simply can't get enough of homework &mdash; even when they finish up their education. Because for some people, helping others with their homework is a lucrative sideline.</p> <p>If this is up your alley, you could try advertising as a homework helper at a freelance marketplace like <a href="http://www.peopleperhour.com/freelance/homework">People Per Hour</a>, or a semi specialist agency like <a href="https://www.thepensters.com">The Pensters</a>. If you have a degree yourself in the subject you want to work with, you could try <a href="http://www.allhomework.net/index.aspx">All My Homework</a> or <a href="http://www.acemyhw.com">Ace My Homework</a>. These platforms all work slightly differently, often with students posting the homework assignment they need help with, for writers to bid for the work. The student then leaves feedback, such as the grade the work achieved, for others to review. Check out the individual site terms if you're tempted by this commute money spinner.</p> <p><em>How do you stay busy on your commute? Share with us 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/claire-millard">Claire Millard</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-make-the-most-of-your-morning-commute">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/the-smart-way-to-budget-on-a-freelance-income">The Smart Way to Budget on a Freelance Income</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-make-400-a-week-as-a-pet-sitter">How to Make $400+ a Week as a Pet Sitter</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/can-you-really-make-money-by-starting-a-blog">Can You Really Make Money by Starting a Blog?</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/16-festive-ways-to-make-extra-money-for-the-holidays">16 Festive Ways to Make Extra Money for the Holidays</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-great-retirement-jobs">6 Great Retirement Jobs</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation Extra Income commute extra money making money morning commute public transportation side job Thu, 07 Apr 2016 09:31:19 +0000 Claire Millard 1686022 at http://www.wisebread.com Help, I Bought a Lemon — Now What Do I Do? http://www.wisebread.com/help-i-bought-a-lemon-now-what-do-i-do <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/help-i-bought-a-lemon-now-what-do-i-do" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_broken_car_000038514306.jpg" alt="Woman bought a lemon and doesn&#039;t know what to do" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>That shiny new (or new-to-you) car you just bought turned out to be a piece of junk. What recourse do you have?</p> <p>When you buy a car, you expect to be able to depend on that car. Most vehicles will break down or need repairs occasionally, but your car being out of service should be a rare event. Even used cars can be very reliable for 200,000 miles or more these days.</p> <p>However, some cars are not very reliable at all. There is even a name for them &mdash; lemons.</p> <h2>How to Avoid Buying a Lemon</h2> <p>It is not always possible to avoid ending up with a lemon, but sometimes you can spot warning signs and avoid buying a car that is likely to give you trouble.</p> <h3>Research Reliability</h3> <p>Check vehicle reliability reports and avoid models that have low reliability scores. Even new cars can have serious reliability issues due to faulty components or manufacturing issues. The first production year of a new model or major model update is often the least reliable.</p> <h3>Avoid Salvage Titles</h3> <p>If you are shopping for a used car, be wary buying a car with a salvage title. Cars that have had serious damage are issued a salvage title. Although it is possible that a car with a salvage title has been properly repaired, sometimes wrecked cars are bent back in shape and sold without properly replacing all of the damaged parts. The result can be a vehicle that is unsafe and will require lots of future repairs.</p> <h3>Skip High Mileage &quot;New&quot; Cars</h3> <p>Watch out for a &quot;new&quot; car for sale that has a lot of miles on it. A car sold as a new car that has thousands of miles on it may have been used as an errand car by the staff at the dealership or has been taken for lots of test drives. Either way, it has more wear and tear &mdash; and less warranty remaining &mdash; than a truly new car</p> <h2>What to Do With a Lemon?</h2> <p>So what can you do if you are struggling with a car that is not reliable?</p> <h3>Start With the Warranty</h3> <p>See if your car has a vehicle warranty that covers your issues. Getting your vehicle repaired under warranty will not cost you anything except your time. Most new cars come with several years of coverage for major systems including the engine and transmission. Some used cars come with a warranty of 30 days or more that cover major mechanical problems.</p> <p>Vehicle warranties expire after a certain amount of mileage or time, so you need to take your car in for warranty repair service before the warranty expires. After the warranty expires, you will need to pay for repairs out of your own pocket.</p> <h3>Get a Refund Under the Lemon Law</h3> <p>In some cases, reasonable attempts to repair your car do not get it running reliably. Some cars keep breaking down for the same reason, even after repairs are completed. This is where the legal definition of &quot;lemon&quot; comes into play.</p> <p>The federal lemon law was established in 1975 to assist vehicle owners in dealing with defective vehicles and other goods. The basic idea of the lemon law is that if a faulty vehicle cannot be repaired, the manufacturer must replace it or provide a refund. Since state law applies to many aspects of warranty coverage, the specific details of what constitutes a lemon varies from state to state.</p> <p>As an example, in my state of Iowa, if you have owned a vehicle for less than two years and driven it less than 24,000 miles, it is considered a lemon if:</p> <ul> <li>Your vehicle has been in the shop for repairs at least three times for the same problem with no success;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Your vehicle's malfunction could cause serious injury or death, and the problem has not been fixed;<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Your vehicle has been out of service for at least 20 days total and it still doesn't work properly.</li> </ul> <p>You can check your state's lemon laws at your state's attorney general office or consumer protection agency.</p> <p>The key to getting your vehicle replaced or refunded under the lemon law depends on proper documentation of the issues with your vehicle. You will need to document your repair attempts and how much time your vehicle has been out of service in order to meet the legal definition of a lemon in your state.</p> <p>In order to claim a refund under the lemon law, you need to notify the manufacturer of the issues with your vehicle. If the issues cannot be resolved within 10 days, you can request that the vehicle be replaced or the purchase price be refunded.</p> <p><em>Have you ever been stuck with a lemon? How'd you get rid of it?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dr-penny-pincher">Dr Penny Pincher</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/help-i-bought-a-lemon-now-what-do-i-do">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-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-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/6-cars-you-can-drive-almost-forever">6 Cars You Can Drive (Almost) Forever</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/7-easy-ways-to-calculate-your-new-car-budget">7 Easy Ways to Calculate Your New Car Budget</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/8-easy-diy-car-repairs-to-save-big">8 Easy DIY Car Repairs to Save Big</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation buying new car high mileage lemon law lemons vehicles warranties Fri, 01 Apr 2016 09:30:24 +0000 Dr Penny Pincher 1681753 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Questions to Ask Before You Sell Your Car http://www.wisebread.com/5-questions-to-ask-before-you-sell-your-car <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-questions-to-ask-before-you-sell-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/woman_riding_car_000069265123.jpg" alt="Woman asking questions before selling her car" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Selling your car in order to upgrade to a new one can be a difficult decision. We emotionally connect with our cars, which can make it difficult to determine if our selling and buying decisions are rational. It can also be tough to figure out whether an older car is worth repairing or if it needs to be put out to pasture.</p> <p>All in all, deciding whether to sell your current car requires careful thought. Here are five questions you need to answer before you decide to sell your car:</p> <h2>1. Why Do You Want to Sell It?</h2> <p>Depending on your answer to this question, you can often easily figure out if keeping your car is really the best option.</p> <p>For instance, I tend to go through a bad case of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-reasons-why-you-should-never-buy-a-new-car" target="_blank">new car lust</a> nearly once a year. This is often triggered by seeing a friend's new car or a particularly well-crafted ad campaign, but sometimes I dream of a new set of wheels because my current car is disappointing me in some way.</p> <p>If I'm disappointed in my car because it's just not a shiny new thing anymore, I know I can ignore my desire for a newer model. But if I'm irritated by consistent needs for repairs and increased maintenance due to the age of my car, then my yearn for a new car might actually be the better financial choice.</p> <p>It can be tough to determine if it is worth putting repair money into an older car. Thankfully, in the age of the Internet, you can learn how long to reasonably expect your car to last once it hits the needing-regular-repair age range. Doing research on the make, model, and year can tell you when to expect your particular vehicle to become too expensive to own, and how much more life you can anticipate out of driving it.</p> <h2>2. How Much Is Your Car Worth?</h2> <p>While this may seem like a straightforward question that can be answered by looking up the car's Kelley Blue Book value, there is more to it than that for many car owners. The dollar amount that you will receive by selling your car is not the only way of measuring your car's value.</p> <p>When considering what your car is worth to you, think about the value of not relying on public transportation, how much being free of a car payment is worth, and how much you love your ride.</p> <p>Considering the subjective nature of these kinds of metrics are, it is important to think through these values before deciding to sell your car.</p> <h2>3. How Will You Sell Your Car?</h2> <p>Selling a car can be stressful. Between gathering the paperwork detailing the car's repair and maintenance history, cleaning the car to make it look desirable, setting aside time for dealing with potential buyers, and fielding negotiation techniques, selling a car via private party can feel like less fun than a trip to the dentist.</p> <p>However, trading your car in at the dealership is not necessarily the best financial choice, since that is where you will likely get the worst possible price.</p> <p>If you do not want to deal with the work necessary to sell your car yourself, make sure you know how much you will be giving up by selling to a dealer or trading the car in rather than selling it private party. It may still be worth it to you to avoid the Craigslist headaches, but it's important to go into your car sale knowing exactly how much the convenience of a trade-in will cost you.</p> <h2>4. Are Your Expectations for a New Car Reasonable?</h2> <p>Several years ago, while in the market for a new (to me) car, I lamented the fact that I could not seem to find a decent used car for less than $6,000, with under 80,000 miles, that got 30 miles per gallon.</p> <p>In short, I was in La La Land, because such a car has never existed &mdash; at least not in my lifetime.</p> <p>Make sure that your expectations for your new car are reasonable. For instance, if you are hoping to buy a car that will be able to haul your whole extended family <em>and</em> save you money at the pump, you are destined to be disappointed. Recognize what is possible in your new ride and what is just wishful thinking.</p> <p>Realizing that everything you want cannot be found in a single car can often be enough for you to decide that you're happy with your current car.</p> <h2>5. What Costs Are Associated With Your Upgrade?</h2> <p>It can be easy to forget the additional costs you face when you sell your old car and buy a new one. Upgrading your car will often mean higher insurance premiums, as well as state and local taxes, state licensing fees, and any finance charges you will be paying. A purchase that looks affordable in theory can quickly become overwhelming if you forget to factor in these costs.</p> <p><em>What steps do you follow when you are planning to sell your car?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-questions-to-ask-before-you-sell-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-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-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/how-to-save-an-extra-109486-a-year">How to Save an Extra $1,094.86 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/6-ways-to-make-the-most-of-your-morning-commute">6 Ways to Make the Most of Your Morning Commute</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/17-things-car-salesmen-dont-want-you-to-know">17 Things Car Salesmen Don&#039;t Want You to Know</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation buying new cars kelley blue book reasonings sellings cars weighing your options Wed, 30 Mar 2016 10:30:08 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 1679088 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Buy a Used Car Without Getting Ripped Off http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-buy-a-used-car-without-getting-ripped-off <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-buy-a-used-car-without-getting-ripped-off" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_new_car_000078308635.jpg" alt="Woman learning how to buy a used car without getting ripped off" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Everyone knows you can save a ton of money buying a used vehicle instead of a new one. But how are you supposed to buy a used car without getting ripped off?</p> <p>Used car sellers are notorious for skillfully covering up expensive mechanical problems when selling used cars, and to make matters worse, used cars are often sold without any warranty at all! Even though used cars cost thousands less than new ones, overpaying for a used car can still be a significant financial setback.</p> <p>How can you get a great deal on a reliable vehicle that fits your budget and come out a winner in the used car game? Here is the method that I have followed to buy several great used cars without paying too much. (See also:&nbsp;<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>)</p> <h2>1. Set Your Car Budget Before You Start Shopping</h2> <p>As with buying most things, one of the big potential problems when buying a used car is simply spending more than you intended to spend. When car shopping, it is easy to be drawn to newer models with lower miles. You can always find a little bit nicer car if you are willing to pay a little bit more money.</p> <p>The best way to avoid getting drawn into spending more than you can afford is to set a budget first, before you even start looking at cars. Decide how much you are willing and able to spend on a used car and have this number clear in your mind before you start looking. The budget for my last car was set at $5,000 before we started shopping.</p> <h2>2. Select Your Target Vehicle Model</h2> <p>Next, think about how you will use the car. Is there a chance you could need to haul kids or pets? Will you want to use the car to help move your stuff to your next house? Will you need to tow anything?</p> <p>Even though gas prices are low, driving a car that gets 15 MPG still costs twice as much as driving one that gets 30 MPG! Pick the most fuel-efficient car that meets your needs and you will save money on gas every time you drive.</p> <p>Based on your current and anticipated needs, start picking out makes and models that are of interest. Car lots can be a good place to get ideas for vehicles that would work for you, but don't let a salesperson pressure you into buying anything until you have finished your research.</p> <p>Check book prices using a site such as <a href="http://kbb.com">Kelley Blue Book</a> to see what model years and mileage would fit within your budget. Use <a href="http://consumerreports.org">Consumer Reports</a> to see reliability ratings, and check the <a href="http://www.iihs.org/iihs/ratings">Insurance Institute for Highway Safety</a> to review crash safety ratings for the make, model, and year of several vehicles. Look on Craigslist for local car lots to see what models are available in your area.</p> <p>Based on the results of your research, narrow your field to the best make and model for you. Based on book price, select a range of a couple model years that are likely to fall within your budget.</p> <p>After you have selected a make and model that meets your needs and a range of model years that will fit your budget, get familiar with the options that are available. One good thing about buying used cars is that options don't affect the price much; you just need to make sure to find a car that has the options that are important to you. If you really want leather seats or a towing package, it won't cost much more if you can find a car that has these options installed.</p> <h2>3. Test Drive Your Target Model</h2> <p>Next, it's time to set up some test drives. Your goal is to test drive several cars of your target make and model, in your budgeted price range, with your preferred options. The condition of used cars varies a lot. With some patience, you can find one in the best condition available.</p> <p>Look for cars to test drive both from dealers and from private party sellers on Craigslist. You can often find better deals buying directly from sellers on Craigslist. Don't test drive cars that are outside of your budget &mdash; you could end up falling in love with an expensive car and paying too much.</p> <p>Driving several cars of the same model will allow you to make a good comparison of condition and how well the car rides and handles. During my most recent test drives, I was surprised to find that the car that handled best and that was in the best condition was two years older and had more miles than the other cars I drove.</p> <p>You can't tell much about the condition of a car by its age and how many miles are on it. The type of driving (city vs. highway) and how the car was maintained have a big impact on the condition of older used cars. You need to test drive a car and check it out in person to know whether it is in good condition or not.</p> <p>You may be disappointed with all of the test drives. This can be a sign that the model you targeted is not right for you. Another problem can be that there are not very many of your target model for sale in your area. Go back to Step Two and choose something different if you don't find a car that you want after going on some test drives..</p> <h2>4. Used Vehicle Inspection From a Mechanic</h2> <p>You can learn a lot about a vehicle from a test drive, but there are lots of problems that could escape your notice. For about $50, you can have a mechanic at a car shop do a used vehicle inspection. This is useful to help you avoid buying a car with major problems. It is also useful to have the inspection results when negotiating the price.</p> <p>Even if a used car is in great shape, the used vehicle inspection will usually turn up a list of routine maintenance items and concerns along with a price estimate for repairs. This is a powerful bargaining tool to be used along with book price in negotiating the best deal.</p> <h2>5. Negotiate the Best Price</h2> <p>Unlike most other items for sale, vehicle prices are typically negotiated.</p> <p>The last used car that I bought was in great shape, yet it was offered right at the minimum of the book price range. It appeared there was not much room to negotiate on price. I decided to acknowledge that the asking price was reasonable, but pulled out my used vehicle inspection report and started going over all the work that this car needed and the price estimates for this work. I used the vehicle inspection report to move the price down $500 below book price. I ended up paying $4,300 for my car and came in $700 under budget.</p> <p>When you find a car that you really want, it can be tempting to pay the full asking price. My advice is to resist this urge and make an offer below asking price. The seller probably wants to sell the car as badly &mdash; or even more &mdash; than you want to buy it. The worst that can happen if you make an offer is that the seller will say no, and then you can offer more, and still end up with the car. You are likely to save hundreds of dollars by negotiating the price.</p> <p>I like to use evidence when bargaining on a price instead of simply asking for a lower price. I show the seller book prices or a list of repairs that are needed to substantiate my offer. Sellers are more likely to accept the lower price if they think it is rational and that other buyers would likely come to the same conclusion.</p> <p>Sometimes you can end up bargaining with an unreasonable seller who wants too much for their vehicle. This can be a problem especially when someone first starts selling a car and thinks they can get a great price for it. You might have to find a different seller or come back in a few weeks after the unreasonable seller has experienced the reality of trying to sell a used car for more than market price.</p> <p>Following these steps will help you find the best used car in your price range without getting ripped off. You might even be able to negotiate the price to less than your budget, leaving you with extra funds to handle any repairs or maintenance needs that pop up.</p> <p><em>Have you bought a used car? How'd you keep from getting ripped off?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dr-penny-pincher">Dr Penny Pincher</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-buy-a-used-car-without-getting-ripped-off">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/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-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-questions-to-ask-before-you-sell-your-car">5 Questions to Ask Before You Sell 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/6-cars-you-can-drive-almost-forever">6 Cars You Can Drive (Almost) Forever</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/help-i-bought-a-lemon-now-what-do-i-do">Help, I Bought a Lemon — Now What Do I Do?</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/7-money-mistakes-everyone-makes-when-buying-their-first-car">7 Money Mistakes Everyone Makes When Buying Their First Car</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation avoid getting ripped off kelley blue book negotiating price comparisons test drive used cars vehicles Mon, 21 Mar 2016 10:30:05 +0000 Dr Penny Pincher 1675260 at http://www.wisebread.com The 5 Best Windshield De-Icers http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-windshield-de-icers <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-5-best-windshield-de-icers" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_icy_windshield_000022631102.jpg" alt="Woman using best windshield de-icers during winter" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>In the middle of winter, it can be impossible to prevent the dreaded layer of ice or snow from building up on your car windows. Fortunately, a good windshield de-icer can clear away the ice and frost in no time, and even prevent it from returning.</p> <p>There are a number of homemade remedies, including simple rubbing alcohol, vinegar, and water, which can reduce ice on your windshield. However, when you need more than a DIY remedy, try a professional windshield de-icer. (See also: &ldquo;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-cheap-and-easy-formulas-for-homemade-windshield-de-icer-plus-bonus-tips">3 Cheap and Easy Formulas for Homemade Windshield De-Icer</a>&rdquo;)</p> <h2>What Is a Windshield De-Icer?</h2> <p>A windshield de-icer is an ice-melting liquid that can be applied to a frozen windshield. It will help melt the ice, frost, and snow, and can reduce your scraping time. It can also help reduce dangerous re-freeze, which in turn, will help increase visibility and driver safety.</p> <p>Driving with a frosty window is dangerous, so you won&rsquo;t want to be caught without this in harsh winter months. Most reviewers trend to agree that you need to use a lot of de-icer to get the results you&rsquo;re looking for, so a bottle of windshield de-icer may only last you through two or three big snow days, depending on where you live.</p> <h2>Top 5 Windshield De-Icers</h2> <h3>Prestone Windshield De-Icer</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000R2Z9E8/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000R2Z9E8&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=DHJM47IVUYZAIDNR"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/prestone.jpg" width="78" height="245" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000R2Z9E8/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000R2Z9E8&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=DHJM47IVUYZAIDNR">Prestone Windshield De-Icer</a> is made from a concentrated ice-melting formula that can quickly melt ice, snow, and frost, and prevent it from returning right away. The high-performance formula is effective at removing snow from your car doors, windows, wipers, and locks. You can feel good about using this because it won&rsquo;t ruin your vehicle&rsquo;s coating. This has a built-in ice scraper, which makes it a great value. Most auto stores recommend Prestone as the best windshield de-icer available. A number of independent online review sites also selected this as the best de-icer on the market.</p> <p>This is very easy to use. Simply start your car and turn on the defroster. Then, use the easy-to-use trigger bottle to dispense the strong, wind-resistant spray on the icy area and wait 15 seconds. Then, you can use the windshield wipers or the scraper to clear off any ice. Reviewers agree that this solution is very effective and you likely won&rsquo;t need a scraper, but in the event that you do, the attached scraper should work perfectly.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000R2Z9E8/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000R2Z9E8&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=DHJM47IVUYZAIDNR"><em>Currently $8.88 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Rain-X De-Icer With Scraper</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003D8O68S/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B003D8O68S&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=7VUZWR46GUWXH45W"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/rainx.jpg" width="75" height="245" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003D8O68S/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B003D8O68S&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=7VUZWR46GUWXH45W">Rain-X De-Icer</a> can melt ice, snow, and frost from the windshield and wipers. The spray also includes a durable scraper on the bottom to help you break through any stubborn snow with ease. It will make your windshield ice, sleet, and snow repellent, so you won&rsquo;t need to worry about re-icing. Rain-X also makes a popular rain repellent, so they know what it takes to keep your windshield clear and streak-free. Independent online review sites selected this as one of the best de-icers on the market.</p> <p>It is so effective that you may not even need to scrape the windshield. To use it, you simply start the car, turn on the defroster, and spray the solution directly on the glass. Then, the windshield will begin de-icing itself, or you can use the scraper to remove the ice.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B003D8O68S/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B003D8O68S&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=7VUZWR46GUWXH45W"><em>Currently $18.99 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Splash Red Hot De-icer Windshield Trigger Spray</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00POJ9VUW/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00POJ9VUW&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=GUKIBWDJLEAPJ2UW"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/splash.jpg" width="104" height="245" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00POJ9VUW/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00POJ9VUW&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=GUKIBWDJLEAPJ2UW">Splash Red Hot De-icer Windshield Trigger Spray</a> works by melting frost and ice on the windshield, wiper blades, locks, mirrors, and doors. It is very effective and some drivers won&rsquo;t even need to scrape the windshield after using this easy-to-use trigger spray. This three pack of de-icers is a great deal, but if you only need one bottle right now, try the single <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00GFTU1U4/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00GFTU1U4&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=R7FUYW5XM7YCWSRH">Windshield Deicer</a>.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00POJ9VUW/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00POJ9VUW&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=GUKIBWDJLEAPJ2UW"><em>Currently $23.41 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>einszett Eistau De-Icer Spray</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004PGVYF0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B004PGVYF0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=75MDZX547Q6OJEA2"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/einszett.jpg" width="100" height="245" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004PGVYF0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B004PGVYF0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=75MDZX547Q6OJEA2">einszett Eistau De-Icer Spray</a> can remove snow, ice, and frost from your vehicle. It is effective at defrosting mirrors, the windshield, wipers, and plastic headlight lenses. It can also help prevent re-icing, so you won&rsquo;t need to deal with fog or glare from the cold. You can feel good about using this because it doesn't contain ammonia or toxic methanol and won&rsquo;t harm your car&rsquo;s paint, glass, or trim. It is also silicone-free, glare-free, and smear-free. Reviewers agree that this is so effective, you likely won&rsquo;t need to use an ice scraper at all. Simply spray it on and watch the glass de-ice itself.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004PGVYF0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B004PGVYF0&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=75MDZX547Q6OJEA2"><em>Currently $15.45 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>CRC Ice-Off Windshield Spray De-Icer</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000M8H65C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000M8H65C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=GLWZYVON3T55H4KO"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/crc.jpg" width="85" height="245" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000M8H65C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000M8H65C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=GLWZYVON3T55H4KO">CRC Ice-Off Windshield Spray De-Icer</a> melts snow, ice, and frost on contact, so you won&rsquo;t have to wait long before you can drive off. Along with defrosting your windshield, it can also thaw windows, frozen locks, and stuck doors. It is also very effective when you find a layer of film on your window from the cold. It will break through the fog and leave you with streak-free glass. This is extremely effective, can be used in sub-zero temperatures, and won&rsquo;t harm your car finish. Many reviewers found that this is so effective that they don&rsquo;t even need to use a scraper any longer. It has outstanding online reviews and is Amazon&rsquo;s #1 bestseller in winter products.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000M8H65C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000M8H65C&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=GLWZYVON3T55H4KO"><em>Currently $5.93 on Amazon</em></a></p> <p>And those are our recommendations for the best windshield de-icers. 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-windshield-de-icers">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/the-5-best-car-battery-warmers">The 5 Best Car Battery Warmers</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-jump-starter-kits">The 5 Best Jump Starter Kits</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-winter-tires">The 5 Best Winter Tires</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-humidifiers">The 5 Best Humidifiers</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-body-scrubs">The 5 Best Body Scrubs</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation Shopping car accessories product reviews windshield windshield de-icers winter Thu, 10 Mar 2016 10:00:07 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1664327 at http://www.wisebread.com What You Need to Know Before Leasing a Car http://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-know-before-leasing-a-car <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/what-you-need-to-know-before-leasing-a-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_new_car_000057087274.jpg" alt="Woman learning what to know before leasing a car" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Leasing is now more popular than ever. In fact, Millennial car buyers are <a href="http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/millennials-more-likely-to-lease-vehicles-than-older-americans-reports-edmundscom-300116019.html">leasing 46% more</a> over the past five years because they are able to afford their dream car at a much lower cost. If you've thought about leasing a vehicle, then we've provided what you need to know before visiting the dealer.</p> <h2>Benefits of Leasing</h2> <p>The benefit of leasing a vehicle is that it is a shorter-term option, as opposed to buying a car. A simple way to think of leasing is as a long-term rental option. You will pay for the car while you need it, and at the end of your lease, you'll simply return it.</p> <p>There are a number of other benefits associated with leasing a vehicle, such as:</p> <ul> <li>Lower repair costs, because the warranty will cover most of them.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Lower sales tax, since you'll only be responsible for paying sales tax on the portion of the car you finance.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Lower monthly payments compared to buying.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Typically, there is no down payment, or a very low down payment, required.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Fewer obligations &mdash; at the end of your contract, you simply turn in the keys and walk away.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>New vehicles every few years. Once your lease term is up, you can choose a new lease and enjoy all the benefits and features of a new car. This also means that you can drive a better car for less money every month. On the other hand, you won't be able to customize your vehicle.</li> </ul> <h2>Length of Lease and Key Contract Terms</h2> <p>Lease terms usually last between two to four years. However, every leasing contract is different, so you want to find out specifics, like the length of the term and the mileage cap (which is typically between 12,000&ndash;15,000 miles/year).</p> <p>Most drivers agree that leasing contracts can be very confusing, even more so than when buying a vehicle. If you'd like to go in as prepared as possible, consider reviewing some <a href="http://blog.caranddriver.com/the-terms-you-need-to-understand-before-leasing-a-new-car/">common contract terms</a>. There's a long list of costs, terms, and fees on a lease contract, but the key items to look for are pretty clear.</p> <h3>Gross Capitalized Cost</h3> <p>This is the sticker price of the car. Like everything else in life, it's negotiable. Don't pay full price!</p> <h3>Adjusted Capitalized Cost</h3> <p>This is the price of the car less negotiation, rebates, trade-in, and down payment.</p> <h3>Residual Value</h3> <p>When you turn in the car at the end of the lease, the carmaker estimates it will still be worth something; the car's residual value. The higher this number, the lower the depreciation (and the lower your payments).</p> <h3>Depreciation</h3> <p>This is the value of the car over the months and miles you will be driving it. You can think of this as the rental fee for the car. Or you can think of it as Adjusted Capitalized Cost - Residual Value.</p> <h3>Money Factor</h3> <p>This is the interest rate you'll pay, but it's not a straight forward interest rate.To compare it with an actual interest rate, multiply it by 2400, so you have a better idea of the value of the loan. This is also negotiable.&nbsp;</p> <p>This interest rate will be charged to the sum of Adjusted Capitalized Cost <em>and</em> Residual Value. It seems like double counting, but you're paying for both the use of the car and money the finance company &quot;loaned&quot; you to lease the car. It may appear on your bill as Finance Charge or Rent Charge.</p> <h3>Monthly Lease Payment</h3> <p>Finally, this is what you'll pay each month. It's simply the Depreciation + Finance Charges + Sales Tax.</p> <p>A <a href="http://www.edmunds.com/car-leasing/calculate-your-own-lease-payment.html">good lease deal</a> is one with the lowest Adjusted Capitalized Cost, the highest possible Residual Value, and the lowest possible Finance or Money Factor. Be sure to negotiate for all three!</p> <h2>Financing and Payment Options</h2> <p>As is the case when purchasing a car, you will have a number of financing options available to you when leasing. Make sure to research lease specials and financing options in your area before visiting a dealership. Use <a href="http://www.edmunds.com/price-promise.html">Edmunds' Price Promise</a> tool to find special offers near you.</p> <p>Leasing can be difficult if you don't have good credit. If you aren't getting the financing terms you're after, then the DMV recommends first working on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-to-increase-your-credit-score-quickly">raising your credit score</a>, offering a higher down payment, or lowering the annual mileage of your lease. If you have a vehicle trade-in, this can be a great start for your down payment.</p> <p>Remember, the higher your down payment is, the lower your monthly payments will be. On the other hand, some experts recommend putting as little down as possible because if your vehicle is wrecked shortly after leasing, you will be out of any money you invested upfront.</p> <h2>The Risks Involved</h2> <p>A leased vehicle is basically a rental, so it's even more crucial that you follow maintenance requirements on time because you could be charged extra fees if you don't. You will also need to be more careful when driving the vehicle around, because you'll be responsible for paying wear-and-tear charges for any damage &mdash; even small cosmetic issues.</p> <p>Leasing agreements can have additional fees involved, such as lease drive-off fees and fees when turning in the car. A drive-off fee is a deposit that needs to be made upfront and includes your first month's payment, and usually adds up to about $1,000 extra.</p> <p>If you go over your mileage cap and have driven more than your leasing agreement specified, then you may be subject to another fee. Consumer Reports estimates an excess mileage penalty of $.10&ndash;$.25 for every additional mile. Review your lease agreement and ask the dealership about any additional fees you should know about.</p> <h2>It Will Never Truly Be Yours</h2> <p>Another downside to leasing a vehicle is that you will never truly own it. You will only pay for the use of the car (as long as you drive it). However, at the end of your leasing agreement, you may have the option to purchase the vehicle for a discounted price.</p> <p>Once a car buyer pays off the car they've purchased, they can drive it around for years without making a payment. But a person that leases will have to keep paying for their vehicle month after month. This can mean big savings for a car buyer after they've finished paying off the auto loan.</p> <h2>Ending Your Lease Early</h2> <p>So, what happens if you decide to turn the car in early? An innocent mistake like this can result in thousands of dollars in termination fees. Often, with early termination, you will still need to return the car and pay what you still owe, which results in a lot of wasted money. Your leasing contract should specify the early termination penalties and conditions, so you'll know what types of fees to expect.</p> <p>There are other options for breaking the lease early, but they can be difficult undertakings. For instance, you can find someone to take over your lease and assume the payments, but this can be a time-consuming and stressful process. You can also work with a company or lease-trading site that can help you sell your lease to interested buyers (for a fee). Your dealership may also be willing to trade in your vehicle for another vehicle. Lastly, you might be able to buy the vehicle from the dealership or sell the vehicle to a private party.</p> <h2>What to Ask at the Dealership</h2> <p>There are several questions you'll want to ask at the dealership, including:</p> <ul> <li>Is GAP insurance included? GAP insurance will protect you in the event that the car is stolen or totaled in an accident.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>What do the warranties cover? You'll want to find out about extended warranty information and what's included in your coverage. Then, you'll know which maintenance services and repairs you'll be personally responsible for.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Can I transfer the lease later? In the event that you need to terminate your lease contract early, you'll need to make sure that your leasing contract will permit this. Asking upfront if the dealership allows lease transfers will save you a lot of time and frustration later.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>What will the total cost be? You might get sidetracked by the lower monthly payments, but in the end, leasing may be more expensive than you think. Inquire about the total cost so that you can get a better picture of what you will be paying in the end (not just per month).</li> </ul> <p><em>Do you have other tips for leasing a car? 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/what-you-need-to-know-before-leasing-a-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-5"> <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-money-mistakes-everyone-makes-when-buying-their-first-car">7 Money Mistakes Everyone Makes When Buying Their First 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/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/7-easy-ways-to-calculate-your-new-car-budget">7 Easy Ways to Calculate Your New Car Budget</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-smart-auto-finance-options">6 Smart Auto Finance Options</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/speed-past-car-debt-with-this-simple-timing-trick">Speed Past Car Debt With This Simple Timing Trick</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation contracts financing lease agreements leasing new cars ownership renting Tue, 01 Mar 2016 10:00:05 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1662574 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Save an Extra $1,094.86 a Year http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-an-extra-109486-a-year <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-save-an-extra-109486-a-year" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000013609451_Small.jpg" alt="saving money in piggy bank" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="166" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>A typical American family can save over $1,000 a year by using these four credit cards.</p> <p>Because credit cards try to differentiate themselves, they specialize in different spending categories. You win by using the right card for each everyday purchase you already make.</p> <p>To come up with the $1,094.86 total annual cash back earned, I use actual numbers of <a href="http://www.bls.gov/news.release/cesan.nr0.htm" title="Consumer Expenditures Breakdown for 2014">what the average American household is already spending</a> (according to the government Bureau of Labor Statistics), then choose the best credit card for each category. I take into account the cash back percentage, annual fee, and sign-up bonuses; and assume you keep the card for two years.</p> <p>(For more details about the cards, click on the card name to read Wise Bread&rsquo;s review.)</p> <h2>Gasoline</h2> <ul> <li>Best Card: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-more-cash-back-for-the-essentials-the-bankamericard-cash-rewards-card" title="BankAmericard Cash Rewards card review"><strong>BankAmericard Cash Rewards&trade;</strong></a></li> <li>Why: 3% cash back at gas stations; $100 sign-up bonus.</li> <li>Annual Rewards: <strong>$124.04</strong></li> </ul> <p>The BankAmericard Cash Rewards&trade; card offers 3% cash back at gas stations on a combined $1,500 spent each quarter on gas and groceries. (You get 2% at grocery stores.) It has no annual fee. There is a $100 sign-up bonus (after $500 spend within 3 months).</p> <p>Since the average American spends $2,468 on gas, that works out to $74.04 in cash back. Combined with the $100 sign-up bonus, that gets you $124.04 in earnings each year for the first two years.</p> <h2>Groceries</h2> <ul> <li>Best Card: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cashing-in-at-the-supermarket-blue-cash-preferred-card-from-american-express-review" title="Blue Cash Preferred card review"><strong>Blue Cash Preferred&reg; Card from American Express</strong></a></li> <li>Why: 6% cash back at grocery stores; $150 sign-up bonus.</li> <li>Annual Rewards: <strong>$194.13</strong></li> </ul> <p>Blue Cash Preferred&reg; Card by American Express offers a whopping 6% cash back on up to $6,000 spent at grocery stores each calendar year.</p> <p>The average American household spends $3,971 on food at home. This works out to $238.26 in cash back on groceries alone. It&rsquo;s worth even more if you count all the non-food items that you can purchases at a grocery store that will still qualify for the 6% cash back.</p> <p>It also comes with a $150 sign-up bonus after new cardholders spend $1,000 within three months of account opening. After subtracting the $75 annual fee, this card offers $194.13 in earnings at grocery stores each year for the first two years.</p> <h2>Restaurants</h2> <ul> <li>Best Card: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chase-sapphire-preferred-review" title="Sapphire Preferred card review"><strong>Chase Sapphire Preferred&reg;</strong></a></li> <li>Why: 2x points on dining and travel; 50,000 points sign-up bonus.</li> <li>Annual Rewards: <strong>$334.00</strong></li> </ul> <p>Chase Sapphire Preferred&reg; offers 2x points on dining and travel, a 50,000 point sign-up bonus offer, and has a $94 annual fee (waived the first year).</p> <p>Americans spend an average of $2,787 on food away from home each year. This equals 5,574 points just on dining out. Any travel purchases will earn more rewards, but we won&rsquo;t include them in our calculations, and not counting any rewards earned from travel purchases.</p> <p>What makes this card special is the 25% bonus you get when you redeem these Chase Ultimate Rewards points towards travel reservations. So every dollar spent earns you 2.5 cents worth of travel, making your annual rewards worth $69.68.</p> <p>In addition, this card offers new applicants 50,000 points (after spending $4,000 within three months). That&rsquo;s worth $625 in travel at the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal.</p> <p>There is a $95 annual fee for this card, but it is waived the first year.</p> <p>Adding up the rewards, sign-up bonus, and annual fee, the Sapphire Preferred offers $334 in rewards each year for the first two years.</p> <h2>Everything Else</h2> <ul> <li>Best Card: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/citi-double-cash-rewards-card-pays-you-to-pay-off-your-debt" title="Double Cash card review"><strong>Citi Double Cash</strong></a></li> <li>Why: 1% cash back at purchase, plus 1% upon payment.</li> <li>Annual Rewards: <strong>$442.69</strong></li> </ul> <p>The Citi Double Cash card offers cash back twice &mdash; 1% on purchase, and 1% when you pay &mdash; on all purchases with no caps. It&rsquo;s the ideal card to use for anything not covered above, or if you run into the rewards caps of the other cards.</p> <p>According to the BLS report, the average household has annual expenditures of $53,495 after taxes. Subtracting the $9,226 we&rsquo;ve accounted for in groceries, gas, and dining, that leaves $44,269. Let's say that half of that goes to things that can't be charged to credit card such as car payments, savings, and mortgage or rent.</p> <p>This leaves $22,134 in expenses to earn cash back on, giving us another $442.69 in annual cash back. There is no annual fee or sign-up bonus for this card.</p> <h2>Easy Way to Save a Thousand Dollars</h2> <p>Adding up our annual rewards calculated above, we see that the average American household can save $1,094.86 (or more) each year just by using these four cards on regular day-to-day purchases. The best part is that it&rsquo;s so darn easy. Of course, this <strong>only</strong> works if you pay off your balance in full, <strong>every month</strong>. Otherwise, no amount of rewards could outweigh the interest you'd be paying.</p> <p>Pro tip: write the spending category (gas, groceries, restaurant, all) on the card with a permanent marker to help you remember which card to use.</p> <p>If you&rsquo;re already spending this money on everyday purchases, there&rsquo;s no reason not to save an extra thousand dollars a year.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/jason-steele">Jason Steele</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-an-extra-109486-a-year">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-6"> <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/wisdom-from-my-favorite-frugal-tv-character-julius-rock">Wisdom from My Favorite Frugal TV Character - Julius Rock</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/what-does-car-rental-insurance-really-cover-on-your-credit-card">What Does Car Rental Insurance Really Cover On Your Credit Card?</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/rewards-that-change-with-your-spending-us-bank-flexperks-travel-rewards-american-express-credit-card">Rewards That Change with Your Spending: U.S. Bank FlexPerks Travel Rewards American Express Credit Card</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/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards">5 Best Travel Reward 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/the-best-5-credit-cards-for-groceries">The 5 Best Credit Cards for Groceries</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Cars and Transportation Credit Cards Food and Drink Travel Thu, 25 Feb 2016 14:30:06 +0000 Jason Steele 1662695 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Money Mistakes Everyone Makes When Buying Their First Car http://www.wisebread.com/7-money-mistakes-everyone-makes-when-buying-their-first-car <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-money-mistakes-everyone-makes-when-buying-their-first-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_new_car_000023883579.jpg" alt="Woman making money mistakes everyone makes with their first car" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>It's easy to make money mistakes anytime you buy a car &mdash; but your first car is especially risky. Here are some expensive first-time car buying mistakes and how to avoid them.</p> <h2>1. Buying the Wrong Kind of Car</h2> <p>When shopping for your first car, it's easy to overlook how you're going to actually use it in the long term. You might think about picking up friends to go out, but overlook routine chores such as hauling groceries home. Your car needs can change rapidly. You don't want a two-seater if your family could grow to three or more within a couple short years. The best way to save money on car expenses is to drive the same car for many years, so choose wisely!</p> <h2>2. Buying a Car With Poor Fuel Economy</h2> <p>If you are buying your first car, you probably aren't used to experiencing pain at the pump, and consequently you may not consider the cost of keeping gas in a pick-up truck. With the current low gas prices, you may not feel that fuel economy is a major consideration &mdash; but don't fall for this expensive mistake. If you choose a car that gets half the fuel economy, you'll pay twice as much for gas &mdash; no matter what happens to the price of gas. And just because gas prices are low today doesn't mean they'll stay low forever. If you buy a fuel hog and gas prices go up, it could seriously impact the resale value of your vehicle down the road.</p> <h2>3. Surprise Maintenance Required</h2> <p>Used cars are much less expensive to buy than new, and are a great choice for a first car. But sometimes a used vehicle can have expensive problems that are not obvious until after you have driven off in it. Never buy a vehicle with a check engine light on unless you understand what maintenance is required to resolve the issue. The problems indicated by a check engine light can cost only a few dollars to repair &mdash; such as replacing the gas cap &mdash; or thousands. The only way to know is to get the car checked out by a mechanic who can read the diagnostic codes, investigate the trouble, and provide an estimate for repairs.</p> <p>Even if the check engine light is not on, I recommend having any used vehicle checked over by a mechanic before you buy it. Getting a vehicle inspection can be a bit inconvenient and costs around $50, but you could save thousands by avoiding a car with expensive maintenance needs. You can also use the inspection report as a bargaining tool to get a better price. Do you really want to risk buying a used car without knowing what could be wrong with it?</p> <h2>4. Buying to Impress</h2> <p>Start your car search by thinking of the things you need a car to do. It needs to be reliable, get you to where you are going, and hold the things you need to haul. That's pretty much it. There are all kinds of options and upgrades available, but these do not change the basic functionality of a car.</p> <p>It is easy to think that a nice car will impress people and make your life better, but any reliable car provides the same basic utility. Try to approach buying a car as you would buying a tool, and don't let emotion overcome your judgment about what a car can do for you.</p> <h2>5. Thinking of a Vehicle as an Investment</h2> <p>Just because cars are expensive doesn't mean they are an investment. Almost any car you buy will drop significantly in value after only a few years. Dealers may encourage you to buy a more expensive car so it will have better resale value later. It is true that certain options such as automatic transmission and all-wheel drive improve resale value, but other options that add thousands of dollars to you car cost may bring only a few hundred dollars of resale value years later. Buying a car is an expense, not an investment. Try to minimize how much you need to spend to obtain safe, reliable transportation.</p> <h2>6. Not Negotiating on Price</h2> <p>Price negotiation can be a new concept for first-time car buyers. Car prices are not like prices for other items for sale &mdash; the sticker price is only a suggestion, and the seller is almost always ready to sell it for less. If you pay full asking price for a car, you are likely paying hundreds, or even thousands, more than you need to pay. With a few minutes of research on the Internet, you can arm yourself with the information you need to confidently negotiate a lower price. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/speed-past-car-debt-with-this-simple-timing-trick">Speed Past Car Debt With This Simple Timing Trick</a>)</p> <h2>7. Getting Tricked Into Dealer Financing</h2> <p>At the end of the car buying process, there is one more chance to make a costly mistake &mdash; dealer financing. The dealer may try to convince first-time car buyers that it will be difficult for them to get financing at all. After taking down some information and working some magic, they will appear with a financing offer and say that you were lucky to qualify. Just sign and the car is yours &mdash; along with its big monthly payments. The problem is that the interest rate from the dealer may be substantially higher than the rate you could get elsewhere. Avoid this trap by getting prequalified for financing at an online lender, credit union, or bank before you go car shopping. This way, you will know how much you can borrow and find a good interest rate before you fall in love with the car.</p> <p><em>What mistakes did you make when buying your first car?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dr-penny-pincher">Dr Penny Pincher</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-money-mistakes-everyone-makes-when-buying-their-first-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-7"> <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/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-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-wisebread-helped-me-get-45mpg-out-of-my-28mpg-car">How Wisebread helped me get 45mpg out of my 28mpg 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-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/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-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/to-change-the-bulb-just-remove-the-bumper-wait-what">To change the bulb, just remove the bumper. Wait, what? - UPDATED.</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation financing fuel economy gas prices maintenance Mistakes negotiating new cars Tue, 02 Feb 2016 10:00:09 +0000 Dr Penny Pincher 1647337 at http://www.wisebread.com 3 Reasons Why You Should Never Buy a New Car http://www.wisebread.com/3-reasons-why-you-should-never-buy-a-new-car <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/3-reasons-why-you-should-never-buy-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_new_car_000014380432.jpg" alt="Woman learning why she should never buy a new car" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I don't know what it is, but there's something really exciting about being the first person to own a car. Maybe it's because brand new cars come with the latest technologies, extremely low mileage, and that new car smell you just can't duplicate. Plus, there are no animal crackers stuck between the seats from the previous owner's three-year-old.</p> <p>But these aren't the only perks of buying new.</p> <p>Unless you have the misfortune of getting stuck with a lemon, new cars typically have fewer maintenance problems, too. In most cases, you don't have to think about replacing the brakes, tires, or other minor repairs for at least a few years. If you run into some defect, most car manufacturers offer a three-year limited warranty, which provides added peace of mind. Additionally, if you're financing, banks usually offer lower interest rates on newer cars. For example, Toyota sometimes runs a 0% financing promotion (or financing as low as 1.9%) on new models for well-qualified buyers.</p> <p>But while there are benefits to buying a brand new car, it might not be the smartest financial choice. At the end of the day, you have to decide whether to buy brand new or used. However, before you think a car with only 10 miles is the better deal, here are three arguments for never buying a brand new car. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-new-car-costs-the-dealer-is-hiding-from-you?ref=seealso">10 New Car Costs the Dealer Is Hiding From You</a>)</p> <h2>1. The Obvious Reason &mdash; You'll Pay More</h2> <p>If money is the least of your worries, it probably doesn't matter whether you buy new or used. But if you identify with the rest of us and you're pinching your pennies, you need a monthly payment that doesn't stretch your budget or cause unnecessary financial strain.</p> <p>The good news is that buying a car doesn't have to complicate your financial life. If you have good credit and you're able to qualify for a new car loan with no hassles, banks may compete for your business and offer the best rate possible.</p> <p>But even with low-rate auto financing on a new purchase, a new car will be more expensive than an older version of the same car. Not only because of the higher sale price &mdash; you'll also pay more in other areas. Brand new cars can have higher insurance premiums than used cars. And if you live in a state with personal property taxes, the newer your car, the more you'll pay in taxes each year.</p> <h2>2. Faster Depreciation and Negative Equity</h2> <p>It's not fair or right, but <a href="https://www.trustedchoice.com/insurance-articles/wheels-wings-motors/car-depreciation/">new cars depreciate faster</a> than used vehicles. The sad reality is that the average new car can depreciate as much as 19% in its first year &mdash; and that's just an average. What does this mean for you? To put it simply, if you buy a brand new car without a down payment, or if your monthly loan payment isn't high enough to compensate for depreciation, you could end up owing more than the vehicle is worth.</p> <p>Let's say you pay $20,000 for a brand new car and $3,000 in finance charges over the length of a five-year term. This brings the total cost of your car to $23,000. We'll factor in a 19% rate of depreciation for the first year, which brings the value of the car down to $16,200. Your payments are $350 a month, or $4,200 a year, so by the end of year one, you'll owe the bank $18,800. Sure, you're making progress on the loan. But since the value of your car dropped nearly $4,000, you now have negative equity and you owe $2,600 more than the car is worth.</p> <p>Negative equity isn't the worst thing to happen if you plan on keeping the car until it's paid off. But if you're the type of person who trades in vehicles every two or three years, negative equity can increase the cost of your next vehicle. If the dealership gives you $19,000 for your trade-in, yet you owe $22,000, the $3,000 difference doesn't disappear. Instead, the dealer tacks the negative equity onto your next car loan. So instead of a sale price of $27,000 for your next vehicle, you end up financing $30,000.</p> <p>On the other hand, if you skip the brand new car and buy a vehicle that's one or two years old, you'll be able to get the car at a price that's more comparable to its actual value, and possibly avoid an upside-down loan.</p> <h2>3. You Get More for the Money Buying Used</h2> <p>Since cars depreciate rapidly within the first year, buying used is an opportunity to get more for less. I have a friend who purchased a one-year old Toyota Camry XLE back in 2010. It was a top-of-the-line Camry with wood grain, leather seats, sunroof, rims, heated seats, JBL sound system, dual temperature control, <em>fully loaded</em>. Just one year prior, the car sold for about $28,000 brand new. However, she was able to purchase the vehicle for a little more than $20,000. The car only had 13,000 miles and not a single scratch or stain. It was like buying a brand new car, without the brand new price tag.</p> <p><em>What do you think? Are you a new car loyalist, or have you found value in buying not-so-new? I'd love to hear you take on this discussion in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-reasons-why-you-should-never-buy-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-8"> <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-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-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-cars-you-can-drive-almost-forever">6 Cars You Can Drive (Almost) Forever</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/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-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/help-i-bought-a-lemon-now-what-do-i-do">Help, I Bought a Lemon — Now What Do I Do?</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/7-money-mistakes-everyone-makes-when-buying-their-first-car">7 Money Mistakes Everyone Makes When Buying Their First Car</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation buying used depreciation equity new cars used cars vehicles Mon, 01 Feb 2016 16:00:04 +0000 Mikey Rox 1646407 at http://www.wisebread.com This Is How the High Cost of Cheap Gas Hurts You http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-the-high-cost-of-cheap-gas-hurts-you <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/this-is-how-the-high-cost-of-cheap-gas-hurts-you" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000079647883_Large.jpg" alt="the cost of cheap gas is actually hurting her" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When I first started driving in the mid-1990s, gas prices generally hovered around $1.25 a gallon, and I could fill up my Chevy Cavalier with just $20 &mdash; and receive change back.</p> <p>In the last few years, it seemed as though the $20 fill-up was a thing of the past. That's why the last several months have been pretty exciting for drivers, as gas prices have once again dipped below $2.00 a gallon and stayed there. And why shouldn't we be excited? Low fuel prices means cheaper goods and services, as well as fat wallets.</p> <p>But that's not the whole story. While cheap gas certainly does help to stimulate our economy and improve household budgets, there is a dark side to the cheap gas. The low prices can often mask high costs elsewhere in the economy or the future. Here are four reasons why cheap gas costs more than you think.</p> <h2>1. Buying More Car Than You Need</h2> <p>Human beings have a hard time recognizing that things change, even when we have recent experience that tells us otherwise. This is called the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-common-logic-traps-you-may-be-falling-for">forever changeless assumption</a>, and it's the reason why drivers flock to large gas-guzzlers when the price at the pump is low, and then race out to buy hybrids when prices spike. The rise of fuel-efficient Japanese cars in the '70s and early '80s, followed by the ubiquity of SUVs in the '90s, then the rise of the hybrid in the 2000s, has lead us to this point.</p> <p>The problem is something that automotive auctioneer and Yahoo Auto contributor Steven Lang refers to as &quot;the 1% solution.&quot; Drivers will buy a vehicle because they are trying to solve a problem that only plagues them 1% of the time. For instance, when gas prices are low, a car buyer might focus on the need to haul the entire extended family and buy a three-row minivan, even though the family only makes family visits once a year. When gas prices go up, worries about the price at the pump make car buyers chase fuel economy and ignore the higher sticker price on the efficient car.</p> <p>You might be thinking that this issue is relatively rare. Except for the Richie Rich types, not many people buy cars every couple of years, and the majority of drivers keep their gas-guzzling vans during periods of expensive fill-ups or keep their hybrids even when a gallon of gas is cheaper than a gallon of milk.</p> <p>But America's fleet of cars is older now than it has ever been with a remarkable average age of 11.5 years. Though the cars produced in the past 12 years are durable, they will eventually need to be replaced. Americans were already buying cars at record rates in 2015, and the trend is expected to continue.</p> <p>That's not to say that you'll jump from driving a Honda Fit to a Ford F-350 just because gas is cheap. According to Steven Lang, &quot;Car buyers tend to take two steps to the right when gas prices are low. If they would normally look at a sub-compact, they'll buy a sedan instead.&quot;</p> <p>The problem with the 1% solution is not just the sticker price, which tends to be higher on larger vehicles. Everything from the cost of regular maintenance to the price of tires goes up with larger cars. And there is no guarantee that cheap gas will remain forever changeless &mdash; and good luck unloading your gas-guzzler when the price of oil spikes again.</p> <h2>2. Wear and Tear on Your Vehicle</h2> <p>There is some debate as to whether consumers are likely to drive more when gas prices are low. One study has shown that Millennials in particular are <a href="http://jalopnik.com/cheaper-gas-is-making-millennials-drive-a-ton-1701419095">likely to drive more</a> when the cost of gas is low, while the Energy Information Administration (EIA) claims that <a href="http://www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.cfm?id=19191">gasoline is an inelastic resource</a>, which means demand does not change when prices fluctuate.</p> <p>However, AAA calculates that 46.6 million Americans <a href="http://newsroom.aaa.com/2015/11/46-9-million-americans-to-travel-for-thanksgiving-according-to-aaa/">traveled for Thanksgiving 2015</a>, which is the highest number of travelers for that holiday since 2007. The low cost of gas certainly played a factor for many travelers.</p> <p>But driving more &mdash; even if it's just additional, special occasion driving &mdash; does put wear and tear on your car. Calculating the exact cost of wear and tear is difficult, but AAA found the average cost per mile in 2014 to be <a href="http://exchange.aaa.com/automobiles-travel/automobiles/driving-costs/#.Vp_km1MrJ-1">44.9 cents per mile</a> for a small sedan driven about 15,000 miles per year. (This cost does include the price of gas.)</p> <h2>3. Traffic Fatalities</h2> <p>Driving your car more is not just potentially costly for your vehicle. It also increases the statistical likelihood that you will get into a wreck. According to sociologist Guangqing Chi of South Dakota State University, a 20-cent decline in gas prices in Minnesota correlated with an additional <a href="http://www.npr.org/2015/01/06/375308884/the-downside-of-cheaper-gas-more-accident-fatalities">15 traffic-related deaths</a> per year. He surmises that a $2 drop in gas prices could translate to an additional 9,000 traffic fatalities per year nationally.</p> <p>There are a number of reasons for this. Cheaper gas means drivers often take more trips &mdash; both long road trips and regular errands &mdash; rather than staying home or combining local trips to save gas. In addition, the fluctuating cost of gasoline has a larger effect on young drivers. When gas prices are low, there are more young and inexperienced drivers on the road since they can afford a tank of gas &mdash; and those are the drivers who are at the greatest risk of being in a car accident.</p> <h2>4. Environmental Concerns</h2> <p>We all know that driving is not great for the environment. Not only do the emissions of <a href="http://homeguides.sfgate.com/am-harming-environment-driving-78514.html">hydrocarbons, nitrogen oxides, and carbon dioxide</a> from each and every tailpipe contribute to ground-level ozone and global warming (not to mention the human health implications of carbon monoxide), but the production of fuel creates a significant amount of similar emissions, accounting for 19% of the emissions produced during the life cycle of the average car.</p> <p>This is problematic both because cheap gas can potentially encourage more driving, and because low prices at the pump make society as a whole less interested in fuel efficiency. According to Michael Sivak, research professor at the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, &quot;Fuel economy for new cars, light trucks, and sport utility vehicles rose fairly steadily from 20.1 miles per gallon in October 2007 to 25.8 MPG in August 2014&hellip; [but] since then, fuel economy of the new-car fleet has reversed course, <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/12/13/business/energy-environment/cheap-gas-is-a-thrill-but-a-costly-one.html?_r=0">dropping to 25 MPG in November [2015]</a>.&quot;</p> <p>Even environmentally-conscious consumers are less likely to make decisions in the best interest of the earth when gas is cheap. Without the immediate pain of costly fill-ups, it can be difficult for drivers to remember that every trip they make contributes to the deterioration of the environment.</p> <h3>Striking a Balance</h3> <p>Cheap gas is not as cheap as it may seem, since our behavior adjusts to low prices in ways that can be very costly. It's a good idea to think of gasoline as an expensive and precious resource, even when a gallon costs less than a bottle of water, since that will help you to remember the hidden costs.</p> <p><em>Do you buy cheap gas? Share your opinion on this trend in the comments below!</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/emily-guy-birken">Emily Guy Birken</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-the-high-cost-of-cheap-gas-hurts-you">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-9"> <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-wisebread-helped-me-get-45mpg-out-of-my-28mpg-car">How Wisebread helped me get 45mpg out of my 28mpg 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/are-you-wasting-68000-on-gas">Are You Wasting $68,000 on Gas?</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/what-will-you-do-when-gas-drops-below-150-a-gallon">What will you do when gas drops below $1.50 a gallon?</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/save-gas-dont-make-left-hand-turns">Save gas; don&#039;t make left-hand turns.</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-benefits-of-a-walkable-neighborhood">The Benefits of a Walkable Neighborhood</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Frugal Living Cars and Transportation car costs cheap gas gas gas mileage gas prices new car Thu, 28 Jan 2016 18:00:04 +0000 Emily Guy Birken 1646414 at http://www.wisebread.com Speed Past Car Debt With This Simple Timing Trick http://www.wisebread.com/speed-past-car-debt-with-this-simple-timing-trick <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/speed-past-car-debt-with-this-simple-timing-trick" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_new_car_000063781465.jpg" alt="Woman speeding past car debt with simple timing trick" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I like goals that are challenging, but achievable. Accordingly, I set a goal to keep a car for 12 years before burying it. A few decades ago that would have been unrealistic. Thankfully today's vehicles, if properly maintained, can run for 200,000 miles or more.</p> <p>This is good news for the frugal, because it creates an opportunity to be without monthly car payments for years. Even if you're a two-car household, with a little creativity and discipline, you can still eliminate those nasty car payments for years at a time. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-easy-ways-to-calculate-your-new-car-budget?ref=seealso">7 Easy Ways to Calculate Your New Car Budget</a>)</p> <p>Why is it so important to be vehicle debt-free? Because cars and trucks are bad investments. They lose value. To make matters worse, while their value falls, they also drain your monthly income as you make loan (or worse still, lease) payments along with maintenance and repair expenditures. That's money you could otherwise put to much better use. (More on that later.)</p> <h2>How to Stagger Car Purchases and Minimize Debt</h2> <p>So, how do you minimize the financial damage by staggering purchases? Here's a schedule to consider following (it's the one we follow in our household):</p> <ul> <li>Now through year six: Household member #1 buys a car, takes out a loan, and pays it off in three years.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Year six: Household member #2 buys a car, takes out a loan, and pays it off in three years.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Year 12: Household member #1 replaces 12-year-old car with a new one; takes out a loan and pays it off in three years.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Year 18: Household member #2 replaces 12-year-old care with a new one; takes out a loan and pays it off in three years.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>So on and so forth.</li> </ul> <p>This allows you to spread out new car purchases every six years. Because each car is paid off in three years, you never have more than one car payment to make at a given time, and 50% of the time you don't have any. If we assume a loan payment of $400/month, then for each three-year period when you have no payments, you can save $12,000, or $24,000 in a single 12-year cycle.</p> <p>What will you do with that extra cash? Prepay another debt. For example, pay off your unpaid credit card balance. Or maybe a student loan. Doing so frees up even more monthly cash flow. Maybe then you'll have saved enough for a down payment on a house.</p> <p>See where this is going? You're getting ahead financially, big time! And it all started with spreading out and staggering your vehicle purchases.</p> <p>So take financial advantage of advances in automobile technology. Change the oil regularly, free up cash flow, and use it to get farther ahead on other debts.</p> <p>And while you're at it, consider saving up for any future vehicle purchases, thus avoiding car notes, in the first place. By doing so, you'll eventually stop the cycle of car debt altogether.</p> <p><em>How long do you keep a new (or new to you) car before replacing it?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/keith-whelan">Keith Whelan</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/speed-past-car-debt-with-this-simple-timing-trick">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-10"> <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-easy-ways-to-calculate-your-new-car-budget">7 Easy Ways to Calculate Your New Car Budget</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-fastest-method-to-eliminate-credit-card-debt">The Fastest Method to Eliminate Credit Card Debt</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/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-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/7-money-mistakes-everyone-makes-when-buying-their-first-car">7 Money Mistakes Everyone Makes When Buying Their First Car</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation debt loans new cars pay schedules payment plans staggering Tue, 26 Jan 2016 14:00:03 +0000 Keith Whelan 1642987 at http://www.wisebread.com The 5 Best Jump Starter Kits http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-jump-starter-kits <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-5-best-jump-starter-kits" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_car_repair_000013809202.jpg" alt="Couple using best jump starter kits to get car started" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There are few things worse than getting in your car only to realize that you can&rsquo;t get it started. While there may be a complicated underlying problem, sometimes, the battery just needs a quick charge. Unfortunately, there isn&rsquo;t always someone around to give your car a jump start when you need it. That&rsquo;s when a good jump starter kit can come in handy.</p> <h2>What Is a Jump Starter?</h2> <p>Whether your vehicle won&rsquo;t start thanks to extreme weather changes, because you left the lights on, or because you just don&rsquo;t drive your car often enough, a jump start kit can help you safely start your vehicle in no time. Some jump starters can also serve as a backup power unit, which you&rsquo;ll be happy to have in the event of a power outage. You&rsquo;ll be able to get the power you need, right when you need it most.</p> <p>If your battery dies, you just need to hook the clamps to your vehicle&rsquo;s battery, turn on the switch to the jump starter, and wait for your vehicle to power up again. You don&rsquo;t need to worry about hooking it up to another vehicle or searching for jumper cables. Everything you need will be included in your jump start kit. Compare that experience to standing on the side of the road waiting for AAA or for another driver to pass by that might be willing to give you a jump.</p> <h2>Top 5 Jump Starter Kits</h2> <h3>Antigravity Batteries Micro-Start Jump Starter/Personal Power Supply</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00FDYYK4A/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00FDYYK4A&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=MLDJUGVINDPDXDSD"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/antigravity%20batteries.jpg" width="245" height="132" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00FDYYK4A/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00FDYYK4A&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=MLDJUGVINDPDXDSD">Antigravity Batteries Micro-Start Jump Starter/Personal Power Supply XP-1</a> is Consumer Reports&rsquo; top choice for jump starters. The 12000mAh jump starter can start any automobile, truck, motorcycle, ATV, or UTV with ease. Along with getting your battery going again, it can also charge your electronics when you&rsquo;re in a bind. It offers unmatched device charging capacity with two USB ports and several laptop connection options. With dual USB ports, you can charge two electronics at the same time.</p> <p>It comes with 12 and 19-volt DC outputs, battery clips, and a cell phone charging cable, all housed in a small, soft-shelled case. It also includes a set of mini jumper cables, eight different charger tips to fit most laptops, and two tips to fit most 12V accessories. It also has a battery indicator light and a hi-power LED light with two flash patterns, including an SOS pattern.</p> <p>The jump starter and personal power supply is only around six inches long, so you can easily fit it in your glove compartment, backpack, or emergency kit. To preserve the battery life, it has an automatic power off when not in use and built-in over-charge and over-discharge protection. You can also prolong its useful life by recharging it just once every six months when not in use. It has outstanding reviews online, is one of Amazon&rsquo;s bestselling jump starters, and was selected as one of the best jump starters of 2015.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00FDYYK4A/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00FDYYK4A&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=MLDJUGVINDPDXDSD"><em>Currently $103.95 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Stanley Peak Amp Jump Starter with Built-in Compressor</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002X6VXL4/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B002X6VXL4&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=UDQWN5EVZ3LYJIQX"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/stanley.jpg" width="180" height="200" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002X6VXL4/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B002X6VXL4&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=UDQWN5EVZ3LYJIQX">Stanley Peak Amp Jump Starter</a> will be your best friend in an emergency. With 1000 Peak Battery Amps and 500-Amp Instant Starting Power, it can power a car, truck, motorcycle, boat, RV, tractor, or any other vehicle with a 12V battery system. It holds a charge well and is simple to recharge. You simply pull back the cover on the back of the jumper, plug in any household extension cord, and charge it until the indicator light turns green.</p> <p>It includes a high-powered, ultra bright LED light that rotates 270 degrees, allowing you to safely power your vehicle on the side of the road, in the middle of the night. It also includes heavy duty metal clamps and a top-mounted, easy-grip rubber molded handle. It also features an alarm that will sound if the clamps are not attached properly, making it even easier to use.</p> <p>It features a built-in 120 PSI air compressor with a brass tipped SureFit nozzle, so you can easily inflate your tires or pump up your sports equipment. This will help you better maintain your tires and vehicle over time. Along with serving as a jump starter and compressor, it can also serve as a portable power unit, so you have the power you need in the event of a power outage. It has a USB power port and 12-volt DC outlet, so you can charge whatever you need to, whenever you need to. In fact, you can even charge two devices at once. It offers an incredible value and can even save you money by allowing you to fill up your tires at home, instead of wasting money at the gas station air pumps. The Stanley J5C09 1000 Peak Amp Jump Starter is Amazon&rsquo;s #1 best seller in jump starters, one of the &ldquo;most wished for&rdquo; items on Amazon, and was selected as one of the best jump starters of 2015.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002X6VXL4/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B002X6VXL4&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=UDQWN5EVZ3LYJIQX"><em>Currently $79.88 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Jump-N-Carry Peak Amp Ultraportable 12V Jump Starter with Light</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000XQ9MGE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000XQ9MGE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=EOPD4SJJMOG3N24V"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/jump%20n%20carry.jpg" width="245" height="179" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000XQ9MGE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000XQ9MGE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=EOPD4SJJMOG3N24V">Jump-N-Carry JNC300XL 900 Peak Amp Ultraportable 12V Jump Starter</a> is one of Amazon&rsquo;s bestselling jump starters for a reason. With more than 1,000 five star reviews on Amazon, it&rsquo;s helped a lot of people out of binds over the years. The reliable jump starter weighs only nine pounds and is very small, so it is easy to store and effortless to use for men, women, and teens. It&rsquo;s very powerful, with 12-volt operation, 900 peak amps, and 225 cranking amps. It can power most vehicles: four cylinders, six cylinders, and larger vehicles. The 12V socket will allow you to easily power a number of accessories. It has an impressive 27&rdquo; cable reach and full size clamps to penetrate battery corrosion. It also has a battery indicator light and a flashlight to help you quickly jump start your car, even on the side of the road.</p> <p>Along with being ultraportable, it is also the most affordable option on our list. It can last for years, as long as you maintain it by plugging it in once every three months, if you aren&rsquo;t using it. This was selected as one of the best jump starters of 2015 because it provides a strong electrical connection and can easily recharge even a corroded battery. If you&rsquo;re looking for something a bit larger, consider other bestselling jump starters from the brand, such as the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000JFJLP6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000JFJLP6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=ZVBHYUQKIMPZXHOI">Jump-N-Carry JNC660 1700 Peak Amp 12-Volt Jump Starter</a>.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000XQ9MGE/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000XQ9MGE&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=EOPD4SJJMOG3N24V"><em>Currently $64.95 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>PowerAll Rosso Portable Power Bank and Car Jump Starter</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00D42AFS8/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00D42AFS8&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=R6IBG5HQ5WDPEBNA"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/powerall.jpg" width="200" height="183" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00D42AFS8/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00D42AFS8&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=R6IBG5HQ5WDPEBNA">PowerAll PBJS12000R Rosso Red/Black Portable Power Bank</a> is a 400 Peak Amp Jump Starter and 12,000 mAh High Capacity Battery. It can charge your battery in a matter of seconds, while some other jump starters can take up to 20 minutes. This portable battery charger and charging adapter has built-in protection against short circuit, over current, overload, over-charge, and over voltage. At just over one pound and six inches long, you can easily store this in your glove box, backpack, or emergency kit.</p> <p>While it is a very small, portable size, it is powerful enough to jumpstart your vehicle 20 times on a full charge. It includes battery indicating lights and a bright LED light on one end with three different modes: a flashlight, strobe light, and SOS light, which can last for 120 hours. There is also an AC adapter, 12V DC adapter, a set of clamps and jumper cables, and two USB ports, so you can easily charge your devices in an emergency. It also includes eight different charging adapters to fit all your portable electronic devices.</p> <p>This can get you out of a number of jams. Whether your car won&rsquo;t start up or you need to charge your smartphone, this can do it all. With dual USB ports, you can even charge two devices at the same time. After the devices are fully charged, this will enter sleep mode so you don&rsquo;t lose the charge. It can last for years, if you maintain it properly by charging it at least once every three months when not in use.</p> <p>This is one of the &ldquo;most wished for&rdquo; items on Amazon and one of Amazon&rsquo;s bestselling jump starters, with nearly 1,000 five star reviews. Consumer Reports selected this as one of the best jump starters because it offers strong performance and good accessory charging options. It has been selected numerous times as the best compact battery booster, including by CNET, who selected it as one of the best pocket-sized jump starters. It was also selected as one of the best jump starters of 2015.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00D42AFS8/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B00D42AFS8&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=R6IBG5HQ5WDPEBNA"><em>Currently $89.75 on Amazon</em></a></p> <h3>Schumacher DSR ProSeries 2200 Peak Amps Jump Starter and Portable Power Unit</h3> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000N4UQL6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000N4UQL6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=2P2NWIXNQEBE36H4"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/schumacher.jpg" width="198" height="220" align="right" alt="" /></a>The <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000N4UQL6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000N4UQL6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=2P2NWIXNQEBE36H4">Schumacher DSR ProSeries 2200 Peak Amps Jump Starter</a> portable power unit is one of Amazon&rsquo;s bestselling jump starters, commonly recommended by professionals, used in professional auto shops, and is even used by AAA representatives when you need a jump. It has 2200 peak amps, 330 cranking amps, and 275 cold cranking amps. It also has a three-amp built-in automatic charger, reverse hook-up alarm, heavy duty clamp with replaceable copper jaws, four-gauge 50 inch cables, high impact rubber base, and a durable polypropylene vented case. It&rsquo;s sturdy, safe, and easy to use. Along with serving as a backup jump starter, it can also power 12V DC accessories. If you charge the professional grade, high output battery once you receive it, it can hold the charge until you need it.</p> <p>Most reviewers agree that this durable jump starter will last for years, even if you use it multiple times throughout the year. It can jump several cars multiple times with no problem. If this doesn&rsquo;t provide the amount of power you need, Schumacher offers jump starters ranging from 1800-4400 Peak Amps. Both the Schumacher PSJ-2212 DSR ProSeries 2200 Peak Amps Jump Starter and Portable Power Unit and the <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004EIAADG/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B004EIAADG&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=XNLJPUFNDQDDU4EP">Schumacher XP2260 1200 Peak Amp Instant Portable Power Source</a> were voted some of the best jump starter kits of 2015, so you are sure to love either of these bestsellers.</p> <p><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000N4UQL6/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=9325&amp;creativeASIN=B000N4UQL6&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=bguidelink-20&amp;linkId=2P2NWIXNQEBE36H4"><em>Currently $150.34 on Amazon</em></a></p> <p>And those are our recommendations for the best jump starters. 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-jump-starter-kits">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-11"> <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-car-battery-warmers">The 5 Best Car Battery Warmers</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-winter-tires">The 5 Best Winter Tires</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-windshield-de-icers">The 5 Best Windshield De-Icers</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-body-scrubs">The 5 Best Body Scrubs</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-extra-virgin-olive-oils">The 5 Best Extra Virgin Olive Oils</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation Shopping auto repairs car kit car parts car repair jump starter kit product reviews Thu, 21 Jan 2016 10:00:04 +0000 Andrea Cannon 1634657 at http://www.wisebread.com 3 Ways Your Commute Is Killing You — And What to Do About It http://www.wisebread.com/3-ways-your-commute-is-killing-you-and-what-to-do-about-it <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/3-ways-your-commute-is-killing-you-and-what-to-do-about-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_mad_000082141745.jpg" alt="Woman learning ways her commute is killing her " title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>How many times have you pounded your fist on the dashboard of your car and moaned, &quot;This traffic is killing me!&quot;</p> <p>What if I told you it literally <em>is</em> killing you? Here are all the ways the better part of an hour that you spend driving to work each day is doing you real harm&hellip; and some healthier alternatives that might just save you.</p> <h2>Time in the Car Is Sedentary</h2> <p>People who <a href="http://www.ajpmonline.org/article/S0749-3797%2812%2900167-5/abstract">commute more than 20 miles a day</a> are more likely to have high blood sugar, high cholesterol, depression, and anxiety, according to a study of Texas road warriors. The authors blamed the health consequences on the fact that long drives leave less time for exercise.</p> <h2>The More You Drive, the More You Weigh</h2> <p>Daily <a href="http://www.ajpmonline.org/article/S0749-3797(12)00776-3/abstract">car commuters gained more weight</a> over a four-year period than occasional car commuters, and nearly twice as much as non-car commuters, an Australian study found. Overweight and obesity combined are the <a href="https://www.wvdhhr.org/bph/oehp/obesity/mortality.htm">second-leading cause of preventable death</a> in the United States.</p> <h2>Even on Public Transit, Long Commutes Wear You Out</h2> <p>A survey of <a href="http://www.journalsleep.org/ViewAbstract.aspx?pid=24164">Long Island rail commuters</a> published in the journal Sleep showed that the longer the commute, the less sleep riders got at night. A Swedish study compared folks who drove or <a href="http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3226527/">took transit to work</a> to those who biked there; the train riders were more likely to feel stressed and exhausted, miss sleep, and call in sick.</p> <p>Unfortunately, most of us can't just call our bosses and explain that commuting is unhealthy and therefore we can't go to work. Well, we can, but we won't get paid. So here are some more practical ideas for avoiding death by commute.</p> <h2>Consider Travel Time When Home and Job Shopping</h2> <p>Since commute time is a serious health issue, it's worthwhile to make it a priority right up there with the quality of schools and the cost of homes when you're deciding where to live. Whenever my family relocates for work, we start our home search with a local transit map. We pinpoint communities where we could walk or bike to a train or, in our current location, ferry. Where we live now, we are lucky enough to be able to get around <a href="http://carfreemom.com/">without owning a car</a>. Both my spouse and I have turned down job offers that would have forced us to drive long distances.</p> <p>When you account for the impact on health, travel time becomes just as relevant as the pay and benefits offered.</p> <h2>Look Into Bike Commuting</h2> <p>People who <a href="http://www.ajpmonline.org/article/S0749-3797(15)00159-2/abstract">pedal to work tend to get more exercise</a> overall, because it's not as if they sit around more after work once the trip is done, according to a study of Spanish bike commuters. In my experience, many members of our community are unaware that it's possible to bring your bike along on the bus, train, and ferry, making it quite practical to pedal at least part of a long commute. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-road-bikes">The 5 Best Road Bikes</a>)</p> <h2>Ask for Work Flexibility</h2> <p>Even if you can't avoid driving to work, you may be able to change your work hours slightly so that you drive before or after the peak traffic hours. Other professionals have success requesting one or more work-from-home days per week, which can free up time for a jog.</p> <p><em>How do you get to work in the morning? Share with us 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/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-ways-your-commute-is-killing-you-and-what-to-do-about-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-12"> <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/10-smart-things-to-do-during-your-commute-even-if-you-drive">10 Smart Things to Do During Your Commute (Even If You Drive!)</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/6-ways-to-make-the-most-of-your-morning-commute">6 Ways to Make the Most of Your Morning Commute</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/what-to-know-when-renting-a-moving-truck">What to Know When Renting a Moving Truck</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/do-you-know-how-to-use-a-parking-meter-serious-question">Do you know how to use a parking meter? Serious question.</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-ways-being-a-safe-driver-will-save-you-big-money">4 Ways Being a Safe Driver Will Save You Big Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career and Income Cars and Transportation commute drive to work driving Health work commute Fri, 08 Jan 2016 12:00:02 +0000 Carrie Kirby 1634703 at http://www.wisebread.com 4 Ways Being a Safe Driver Will Save You Big Money http://www.wisebread.com/4-ways-being-a-safe-driver-will-save-you-big-money <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-ways-being-a-safe-driver-will-save-you-big-money" 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_000052861520.jpg" alt="Woman learning how being a safe driver will save her big" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>That speeding ticket can cost you &mdash; to the tune of an initial fine of $100 or more. That's bad enough, but then comes the hit to your insurance premium. You can expect the cost of your auto insurance to jump by at least 20% if you're caught driving 15 miles per hour over the speed limit, according to a study by InsuranceQuotes.com.</p> <p>But if you follow the speed limit, you don't have to worry about this financial hit. (See also:&nbsp;<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>)</p> <p>That's just one of the ways that being a safe driver can save you a load of money. Here's a look at the financial benefits that a safe driving record will bring you.</p> <h2>Lower Insurance Rates and Discounts</h2> <p>A clean driving record &mdash; one free of auto accidents, speeding tickets, or other moving violations &mdash; can dramatically reduce the amount you pay to your auto insurer each month.</p> <p>Insurance Quotes and Quadrant Information Services studied the impact of traffic incidents on insurance rates, and discovered that driving under the influence increased auto insurance premiums by an average of 93%. Reckless driving boosted it upward by an average of 82%. For speeding, the average increase varied, but those drivers going up to 15 miles per hour over the limit generally saw their insurance premiums jump by 21%.</p> <p>Another study by InsuranceQuotes.com, released in early 2015, found that drivers who make one accident claim will see their auto insurance rates jump by an average of 41%. Those who make two claims in a year will see their auto insurance rates increase by 93%.</p> <p>If you're a safe driver, you can actually be rewarded and save money by way of discounts. Allstate offers savings of 22% on policies after three consecutive years without any violations or accidents. After five years without any violations or accidents, drivers can reduce their insurance rates by 35%. Allstate also offers a defensive-driver discount. Under this program, drivers who are 55 or older and who complete six or more hours of defensive-driving courses can save up to 10% on their auto insurance.</p> <p>Don't have Allstate? Geico offers a discount of 26% for drivers who have been accident-free for five years. American Family offers drivers without accidents, violations, or claims a discount of 5% to 10%. Contact your auto insurance provider and see what safe driver discounts are available.</p> <h2>No Speeding Tickets</h2> <p>Getting a speeding ticket isn't much fun. It's costly, too. Last year, NerdWallet took a look at what a speeding ticket can cost drivers in California. According to the site, those drivers who were ticketed for going 15 miles per hour over the speed limit paid an average of $234 when fees and surcharges were taken into account.</p> <p>In 2013, insurer Esurance reported that the average speeding ticket costs drivers throughout the United States $150. That's a lot of money. And it doesn't even take into account how much your insurance rate will jump after a speeding ticket. Speaking of which...</p> <h2>Gas Savings</h2> <p>You might not think that driving the speed limit will save you money at the fuel pump, but it will. According to the Department of Energy's FuelEconomy.gov, aggressive driving &mdash; which includes speeding, rapid acceleration, and hard braking &mdash; can lower your car's gas mileage by 33% at highway speeds and by 5% when you're driving in town.</p> <p>By driving the speed limit, and by avoiding rapid acceleration and braking, you can save up to 21 cents per gallon in fuel costs.</p> <h2>Fewer Traffic Accidents</h2> <p>Car accidents are terrifying events. They're also expensive ones.</p> <p>Speeding, not paying attention, or driving under the influence can not only result in terrible injury or death, but tremendous economic impact. According to a 2010 study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the overall cost of motor vehicle crashes in the U.S. amounted to nearly $1 trillion. By being more aware, you can save yourself and others the costly financial burden of deductibles, auto and property repairs, rate hikes, and bodily injury.</p> <p>Driving safely and at the speed limit won't completely protect you from car accidents and their costs. But it will help.</p> <p><em>Do your driving habits help or hurt your wallet?</em></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/4-ways-being-a-safe-driver-will-save-you-big-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-13"> <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/what-to-do-and-not-do-when-youre-in-a-car-accident">What to Do (and Not Do) When You&#039;re in a Car Accident</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-steps-you-must-take-if-youve-been-in-a-car-accident">10 Steps You Must Take If You&#039;ve Been in a Car Accident</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/this-is-what-that-ticket-you-got-will-do-to-your-car-insurance-rate">This Is What That Ticket You Got Will Do to Your Car Insurance Rate</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-to-know-when-renting-a-moving-truck">What to Know When Renting a Moving Truck</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/do-you-know-how-to-use-a-parking-meter-serious-question">Do you know how to use a parking meter? Serious question.</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation auto insurance discounts driving rates safety tickets Tue, 05 Jan 2016 18:00:07 +0000 Dan Rafter 1629243 at http://www.wisebread.com