If there is one single thing I would change about my life, it would be to completely cut commuting and everything about commuting out. That includes car ownership. I loathe owning cars. I loathe driving cars. I loathe paying for gas and tolls. I loathe the time I spend waiting in traffic. And more than those? I loathe dropping thousands on car maintenance.
In the past three months we've done the following things to our two cars:
- Replaced both sets of tires (talk about money rapidly leaving your wallet...)
- Subsequently got tires repaired/patched/single tires replaced again 2X
- Replaced battery
- Replaced failed transmission on newer car (covered under warranty - positive spin)
- Replaced break pads
- Replaced and repaired rear bumper and trunk from being rear-ended
- Fixed windshield chips 4X
- Got hit by a gigantic semi truck tire that blew out, and jacked up our grill. Still haven't repaired it, but at least started an insurance claim.....
- Regular preventive maintenance/oil change every 5,000 miles, which we hit a couple times in the past few months.
I have coping mechanisms for my commute (which I may write about), but unfortunately my city and circumstances haven't panned out to many other feasible alternatives to commuting.
Now, onto the house. There are joys to owning a home. Buying a house was a huge goal of mine. But sometimes, I wonder....why was it a goal of mine? The stress of being responsible for the upkeep and repair (mainly, the repair dollars) of this home you now own sometimes does not outweigh the joy of owning your home. I know it's an investment, and it's a long term bigger picture thing, but still. Is it worth the headache? It's not something I really "got" until I was actually experiencing this.
Everyone would rather spend their "house fixing" money on remodeling or decorating....but then when your AC starts dripping water down your wall - shit gets real. I just feel lucky that we've been able to swing these repairs. Some people have this stuff happen to their houses, and can't do a thing about it. My coping mechanism for the house repair frustrations is gratitude and perspective...but still doesn't stop me from wanting to blog about it!
Further, owning your house is one way to have your biggest possession tie you down, which is the antithesis of minimalism. For me though, I'm already tied down. I have young kids to put through school (soon) and feed! And wouldn't want to have it any other way!