There are plenty of ups and downs to driving an old vehicle that is paid for.

Dave Ramsey says, "live like no other, so you can live like no other." Well obviously he doesn't have to pay the ridiculous auto insurance rates we have here in Michigan that keep many of us from buying a new vehicle or even one that is only a couple years old.

I drive a 2007 Chevy Impala and a 2005 Chevy Silverado and both are in pretty good shape. I love not having any vehicle payments as well, but insuring all these is a pain in this state. I couldn't imagine how much it costs to insure a new vehicle as much as it is to insure these rudy-poo vehicles I own.

This plan was working pretty well when I lived in Indiana where auto insurance is one quarter the price it is in Michigan, but here I have been thinking of downsizing to one vehicle.

As I mentioned earlier, having no vehicle payments is great, but when the repairs start happening more frequently, the thought of a payment isn't so bad either.

I'm in a catch 22 because of where I live, and yes it is my choice to live in the middle of nowhere. I need a truck because of the amount of snow we get this far north of Grand Rapids. I also need a vehicle for the rest of the time that gets good gas mileage. Both vehicles have a couple more years left in them before I have to make a decision or the auto premiums force the decision sooner.

For the past three weeks I have had my car into the shop twice and those two bills amounted to around $1300 combined. I knew the mechanic before I moved here or the bills would have been much higher. Now my truck is in the shop and hopefully it's a little less in cost to repair since it's in better shape than the car is in and an isolated issue.

So not having payments is great, but when you are shelling out a lot for repairs like I have been, you begin to think about getting a newer vehicle.

I just don't have the tools and the time to wrench on the vehicles myself or I would to save the money.

If you are good at working on your own vehicles and have the tools, more power to you because you can save big time.

In the meantime, I have a couple more years to think about my next vehicle purchase, one thing I can assure you is, it won't be a brand new one when the time comes.

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