There are two things my husband loves as far as hobbies go: Apple and Ford Mustangs. The latter is something people are very surprised to learn about him. He comes across as a reserved and very shy guy. Have you seen the movie “Zootopia”? He is like the character of Dash (the sloth) who gets busted for speeding at the end of the movie. I did not see that one coming!
Anyway, my husband had his current Ford Mustang for 9 years. It was bought used and the deal was, he would keep it for 10 years and then get another brand new Mustang. He insisted that it had to be brand new. I don’t get it because obviously, buying “used” is usually the way to go. But it’s not about logic, y’all! No one buys Ford Mustangs because it’s logical and practical. Am I right, male readers?
The plan was to get it next October, but a couple of things happened. The color he likes was discontinued for 2017 and apparently, they are planning on making some changes to the body style in 2018. My husband has a very specific taste and 2016 model year had everything he wanted. So, if we waited till 2017, we would have to buy used. Oh, the horror! I’m being sarcastic, of course.
Additionally, my in-laws just bought a new minivan and we ended up getting their old one. We really needed something bigger than our Mazda5, so it worked out very well. This is something that prevented me from considering a new Ford Mustang since we had to take care of our minivan situation first. So what if it has 115,000 miles on it? I’m keeping it till the wheels fall off.
I wish my husband shared the same sentiment about his old Mustang, but alas, he didn’t. Many times I found him staring longingly at 2016 models and pretty much drooling on his Apple iPad. I felt bad, so I did something foolish. I told him maybe we could buy his new car this year instead. You should have seen his face! He instantly pulled up the car he wanted on the computer and asked me to start negotiating process. Apparently, there was only one “perfect” Mustang in the state of Florida.
I hate buying cars
I did an online chat with a salesman trying to get him to budge on the price. No go. He said Ford already dropped the price some and offered 0% financing on top of it. I’m not going to give numbers except to say that the car was totally overpriced. It’s a dark green V8, GT, “California Special” Ford Mustang.
The interior has super fancy leather and there is even an A/C for your butt. No, I’m not kidding. So, if your posterior gets extra hot while driving, this car is for you. Alternatively, you can just put some water on your behind before getting in the car. Cheaper and just as good!
Of course, my husband wanted to buy it regardless of the price, so we went to look at the car that very day. I hate car dealerships but have to admit, this experience was rather pleasant aside from ridiculous cost. Our salesman was very nice, no-pressure kind of guy. I knew what our trade-in was worth, and they were happy to offer us that amount.
Always do your research ahead of time. I looked up Kelley Blue Book trade-in value for free before leaving the house and took the printout with me. Even though it won’t always be 100% accurate, it will give you a rough estimate and show salesman that you did your homework. Of course, it’s best to let them make an offer and go from there.
Everything seemed to fall into place, but there was a small matter of financing. You see, we sure as heck don’t have the cash to pay for a brand new V8 Mustang that has an A/C for your butt. Fortunately, Ford wants to get rid of 2016 models ASAP, so we could potentially get 0% financing.
Does churning decrease your chances of getting a good rate on auto loan?
My husband and I constantly switch credit cards but happen to have very good credit scores (around 770). It appears that all the recent inquiries didn’t matter in the least. My husband has applied in his name and got 0% interest for 72 months. Yes, we will be making payments on this baby for 6 years. My condition to hubby was that he keeps it for at least 10 years, possibly longer. He cheerfully agreed.
I did ask the salesman if we could use a credit card to put some money down. He said yes, as long as it’s $5,000 or less. I went ahead and split it between two credit cards in order to meet minimum spending requirements. Plus, I also earned 2 points per dollar, worth 2 cents toward travel (total of $100).
I will say upfront that this is NOT a good idea for most people. Since we got 0% financing, we have to factor in the lost interest we would have earned on that $5,000. If you have access to an account that pays 3% or more, you will be better off skipping credit card option. In my case, I already maximize 5% earnings on two Insight cards as well as Netspend (see highest paying savings accounts’ comparison on this DoC page).
The high-interest savings account options have been drying up as of late, so I bet my money on the “bird in a hand.” That way, I could sign up for another credit card bonus (more on that tomorrow). I will have to pull that money out of savings, but we still have enough put away that I feel this was a somewhat reasonable decision, given the circumstances. I was planning on allocating money for a new Mustang each month, and will now divert it to our savings account instead.
My husband is happy, so I’m happy (I think)
I’m an extremely logical/cheap person, so obviously, this sort of extravagance isn’t my cup of tea. But here is the thing, travel (for the most part) isn’t my husband’s cup of tea but he still does it to make me happy. Flying to Europe in coach every two years isn’t something he enjoys, but he comes along anyway. My parents drive him crazy, yet he agrees to have them over once or twice per year.
He also works very hard and drives a lot during the day. Why not make it a little more enjoyable for him? Also, something I’m very happy about is that this car has side air bags (his last one didn’t). We can afford monthly payment (for now), but our travel will probably need to be scaled back for the foreseeable future.
Of course, we will still be going places, but I’ll be watching my cash like a hawk. No mattress runs for IHG points, we are burning what we have or signing up for a credit card bonus. It goes without saying that my income from the blog wasn’t taken into account. It could literally go away tomorrow, so it would be extremely foolish for me to rely on it for the next 6 years.
My husband has been at his current job for close to ten years, and we don’t have any reason to believe that it will change in a near future. Of course, you never know with these things, but we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it.
He is downright giddy right now and can’t get enough of his new toy. We took kids to a nearby city which required one-hour drive in a Mustang, and he told me to put pull-ups on my son, just in case. Yet he gave me so much grief when I did the same thing before a long airplane ride. What?
I asked my husband to pose for a photo in his new toy and he cheerfully agreed. He has been so nice to me for the last few days: “Credit cards? I love constantly switching credit cards!” Originally, I wanted him to wear nothing but gold chain and a speedo (both clearly visible on photo), but he drew the line there.
This is what mid-life crisis looks like. But it sure beats getting a mistress, right? Right? 🙂 Seeing his stupid grin makes this foolishness almost worth it. Almost…
Leana is the founder of Miles For Family. She enjoys beach vacations and visiting her family in Europe. Originally from Belarus, Leana resides in central Florida with her husband and two children.