We’ve been living as a one car family essentially since Christmastime, that being when my car first died and was never successfully repaired. And you know what? It really isn’t that bad.
Of course, it helps that I’m a stay at home mom. That really does make it easier. I don’t need a car to get to work, just for errands. My daughter’s preschool is easy walking distance. As you can see, my need for a car of my own is quite minimal.
Today I learned about a service called Flexcar, which is really neat for those of you who need a car somewhat more than I do. It’s available in certain areas, including near enough to me to be a consideration, but I quite simply do not need it. But for those of you who do need a little more help, it could be an option.
There will be times that I will need a car, and fortunately I have one I can borrow from my mother. She has a company car, and so barely needs her personal car during the week. That will become important when summer rolls around and I enroll my daughter in swimming lessons. As my inlaws have a pool in their backyard, I consider this a must, not a luxury.
But for much of the year I don’t need a car. I’ve been comfortable using our remaining car when my husband is home from work. This has actually been working well for us. It encourages me to go to the store less often, and because I go there less, it is easier to buy less unnecessary stuff.
With all that said, I do look forward to when our finances allow us to get a second car again. This was a financial decision, not a green one, after all. But the next car will be chosen carefully with the environment in mind. I would love a minivan with great mileage… my husband wants an SUV, so that was our compromise. But I won’t object to a nice hybrid sedan, whichever brand is doing best at the time.
This will become important eventually. My husband’s car is one of those little 3-door Saturns, and the backseat is not that comfortable for the kids. That problem will only get worse as they grow.
One of the fun things about only having one car is telling people about it. People are shocked! They cannot believe we can cope or that it doesn’t drive me insane. They all swear they could never do it.
Guess what? It’s not that hard at all! The need for a second car is not as great as many think, especially if you are a stay at home mom. It means thinking more about what you need a car for, planning more carefully when it comes to meals, and rethinking the children’s activities, but it is possible.