Saturday, June 10, 2023
HomeAbroad With AshTuesday Rant: Two Numbers

Tuesday Rant: Two Numbers

1500 Days to Freedom

Think different and escape the rat race.

by Mr. 1500 Days 8 Comments

So I used to write a Rant series on this blog where I’d talk about things that annoy me. Example. In an effort to be more positive, I cut it out. However, sometimes I just can’t help myself. I came across two ridiculous numbers recently…

Have you ever had any of the following thoughts?:

Today is your lucky day! I bring you the Tiffany Everyday Objects line.

Who buys this stuff? And why?!??

If you want to retire early, you only really have to get two things right; housing and cars. If you’re OK living in a modest home and driving geriatric vehicles, you could be well on your way to Financial Independence. It’s not looking good for 15.7% of car buyers:

Car payments are at *all-time* highs:

Percentage of car buyers who committed to a monthly payment of $1,000 or more:

Q4 2020: 6.7%
Q4 2021: 10.5%
Q4 2022: 15.7% (!)

Stay tuned for release of Q1 numbers over the next couple of weeks

A $1,000 car payment is nuts. A car is a quickly depreciating thing that will most likely be worth $0 in less than 20 years. And the payment is only part of the deal. If you have a car that costs that much, you’re going to be paying a lot for insurance too. Don’t forget about repairs and maintenance. The truth is that a luxury car isn’t going to be as reliable as a basic Mazda or Toyota and it’s going to cost you waaaaay more to fix.

The key word, the very bad word, the awful word, the word that triggers me; is payments. If you have to pay $1,000 to own a car, you probably shouldn’t own that car. Find one that you can afford to buy with cash or at least one that has a reasonable payment.

On the other hand, if driving a Lamborghini Huracan down the Pacific Coast Highway** is going light up your life and you can just write one massive check to the Lamborghini people, do it! All I ask is that you give me a ride in it.

*Perhaps the joke is on me since I’m providing free advertising for Tiffany!

**I recently met someone who did this very thing. Pretty awesome. He is my hero.

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Filed Under: Rants Tagged With: lamborghini huracan, tiffany

FIforthePeople says

Amen to all this, That said, re companies that charge stupid high prices for things (Whole Foods is the usual target of my ire, but I may change it to Tiffany after reading this post), I don’t ask, “why are their prices so ridiculously high?!” Rather, I’ve for years asked, “why are their prices so low?!” Because the company’s customers clearly are buying the product BECAUSE of the high price tag. Not IN SPITE of it. So, why not jack the price up even more?

Tech says

Spend the $1000 bucks to rent a lambo to drive and you can it out of your system for the cost of one car payment. I sat in a Countach at a car show once and it’s not very enjoyable seat or view for me. I rather ride a bike* on the Pacific Coast Highway! 🙂

* a pedal bike would be heroic, for me it will be a motorbike.

Steveark says

I don’t think they sell any of those items. I think they just have them to make their brand seem exotic and to entice people to shop there. Obviously it has the opposite effect on you and me, but Tiffany wasn’t going to get our business in the first place, because, we aren’t idiots.

Adam says

Just a few hours ago I took my car in for emissions testing. It’s a Hyundai I bought new in ’04 — now with 168k miles, significant unrepaired cosmetic fender damage, and terribly faded paint. The looks of disdain from the testing employees felt like honey coating my soul!

That said, I could be talked into an electric Miata when Mazda finally rolls one out. Bet it’ll claim a similar 0-60 as an ’82 Countach. 😉

AnotherEngineer says

Not to be pedantic, but this applies to my work in traffic safety: the 2023 gas Miata, not a particularly fast car, has the same 0-60 at an ’82 Countach at mid-5 seconds (as is a 2023 Accord!). Presumably an electric Miata would be several seconds faster. Typical car, minivan and truck models today are as fast as 90’s/00’s sports cars and 80’s supercars. EVs are both heavier and much faster.

Adam says

Pedantry encouraged! Yeah, I looked it up afterward — today’s base model stickshift Miata is all the supercar I could ever want. Compared to my current hoopty it’d feel like a rocketship. Maybe I’ll pick one up in seven years as a retirement/50th birthday present.

Bob Reisner says

Based on your net worth, a $1,000 payment is more than reasonable. If you want to take a loan, your choice and no harm. For those on the path to FIRE, really dumb. Just need context.

I do drive expensive cars but cash seems right for me but I’ve seen some interesting cases. One of my kids bought a new car a couple years back, it came with a zero interest option. So why not? He took the loan. My wife liked Toyota Avalons but we switched to Hyundai Genesis in 2009 because the Genesis was a better vehicle at a better price. And Hyundai was giving stupid 3 year leases. Top trim for less than $5k/yr. We did three in a row and bought out the last lease at term because the buy out was silly. Context.


Totally agree with $190 dog bowl.

But when I worked in mega corps, sometimes an item like this was used as a part of informal awards or promotional raffles. Insignificant cost in these cases.

So yes, some stupid people (rich and poor) but sometimes sort of ok.

Bob Reisner says

PS: just saw this example for not using cash…

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