Why Are People Still Driving 20 Year Old Cars With Duct Tape and Trash Bags for Windows? LEASE, LEASE, LEASE!!!
Duct tape and a trash bag is not the same as replacing your window.
Why are people continuing to drive their 1988 Toyota Corolla's that have trash bags as windows, exposed mufflers, and with more than 2 "spares" being used as the everyday wheel--with obviously no plans to replace them.
I understand that it sounds a bit privileged to say these things, but seriously, how are these people going on dates, or going to work on a rainy day? Why even have a car at all at that point? Donate the thing, take the tax deduction, and buy a really, really nice road bike for a couple thousand dollars (think Trek Madone)--at least then you'll look cool and you can just adopt the "rider" persona and live your life as the cycling guy.
What wife wants to ride with her husband anywhere with trash bags for windows, especially if she's having a great hair day? My wife won't even let me roll the windows down in my Porsche as we cruise the PCH if she's having a good hair day.
Car leases are super inexpensive
Are people simply unaware of how simple it is to lease a car? And more importantly, how incredibly cheap it can be?
My father-in-law currently leases a Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited, with all of the bells and whistles they offer, for $399/month. In some major cities, that's cheaper than the monthly cost to park a vehicle in a major parking structure. And the sticker value on his car when he leased it was close to $50,000. Yes, you read that right.
You can lease a brand new Corolla, with all new features (4 windows, made of glass, seatbelts, 4 REAL wheels, a spare wheel in the trunk, etc.) for well under $200 per month. There are plenty of cars than are even cheaper, going under $149 per month.
But some of you might be saying, "Yeah, but I don't have a couple thousand dollars for the amount due at signing." And that's fine, but EVERYTHING can be rolled into a lease, it'll jut increase the payment by a few bucks (divide the amount you want to roll in by the number of months that you plan to lease for, and that'll be how much it add to your monthly payment--Ex: $1000 rolled in on a 36 month lease would increase your payment by $27.78). You really only need a few hundred bucks to start a car lease.
And I haven't even gotten to the best part yet...
Leasing removes the headaches of ownership
When you own a 4+ year old car and something breaks down, you have to take it to a mechanic to fix it. Or just wip out the duct tape, and do the job yourself at home. Howeer, when you lease a vehicle, because you're getting a brand new vehicle, everything on the vehicle is covered for the first 4 years from your acquisition date, or the first 50,000 miles (both of which are generally out of reach during the length of your lease, which is most typically 36 months, with 10,000-12,000 miles per month).
If on the first day of taking your new leased vehicle home the A/C stops working, take it back to the dealership service center. They fix it for free. If your engine fails in the first hour, take it back to the dealership. If the windows stop rolling up or down, take it back to the dealership. And you don't even have to take it back to where you bought it. If you buy your Corolla from a Toyota dealer that is 150 miles away because they had more vehicles to choose from and better prices, that does NOT matter. Any Toyota dealer will honor your warranty and service your repairs as needed, again, FOR FREE.
So, now you've decided to go out (or online) and start shopping around for car lease deals. Good for you. It's the best decision you can make today, by getting rid of that clunker, which you can either trade-in and use toward the cost of the lease, or donate and take the tax deduction (I've never done this so I cannot offer any advice hear as far as the donations).
I promise that when you start driving home, with your fully-automatic-functioning-windows rolled down and the wind in your hair, that you're going to feel like a million bucks. That boost in confidence just might make you a better person to be around at home. It might motivate you to be a little bit better employee and get that next promotion. But regardless, you'll have the next 3 years to enjoy your car, and immediately start looking forward to the day that you get to take it back and swap it for a brand new one. Let someone else have your car's sloppy seconds.