The Downsizing Dozen: Shifting Into Single Gear

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One of the major changes we’ve made in the last ten months, much to the shock and dismay of friends and family, is to pare down to one car. That’s right, when the third resident of our apartment moved out earlier this month, she took one of our cars with her. And with it went the fuel expenses, insurance rates, repair bills, registration fees, and that reassuring sense of independence that the second vehicle provides.

We had already transferred ownership last year, but the second car was still available to us as a backup. Since my daughter was born, the second vehicle was usually assigned as my main mode of transport, and our newer “travel” autos were taken by my husband for his longer, and daily, commutes.

When my old car finally drove away to greener pastures, we heaved a sigh of collective relief that our offspring had a dependable way to get to work, but the reality of what we would be giving up finally smacked us in the rear bumper:

  1. Making appointments without checking with each other constantly.
  2. Use of an alternate when one car is in for repairs.
  3. Something to follow and pick us up in at the auto repair shop (see above).
  4. Another vehicle to haul an overflow of extra people, or stuff.
  5. Driving downtown to meet the other for an impromptu meal or a wild hair.

Well, you get the idea. None of these are deal breakers, and since we both work from home now, neither of us is left without transportation for very long. Plus, we can better afford to maintain our single vehicle and pamper it in a nice garage, instead of leaving two out in the cold (and hail).

As our first full year of downsizing looms closer, we hope to continue our monogamous vehicular affair for the foreseeable future on the roads ahead. After all, we’ve already driven off the cliffs of suburban conformity, so why slow down now?

Once a month for the next twelve, I’ll feature another step in the downsizing journey that didn’t just begin when we sold our suburban house and moved to a small walk-up apartment in June of 2014. This shift to a simpler life has been years in the making, and I hope you’ll join me in my family’s quest to get down to basics. My inaugural post entitled Giving It All Away was featured in July, Make It Stick in August, Following Your Feet in September, Case of the Missing Mac in October, Diminished Drumsticks in November, Dwindling Decorations in December, Finding Focus in January, Forgotten Food in February, and Travel Time in March.

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4 thoughts on “The Downsizing Dozen: Shifting Into Single Gear

  1. megwolfewrites

    We’ve been one-car for three or four years now (I’d have to look in my files for the receipt from selling the second vehicle to Car Max for the length of time and I’m too lazy). Steve hates driving. I do as little as possible. We both work from home, and only occasionally need to go out of down to visit my mother or old friends. It’s fine. Just one car to maintain, and our repair service is six blocks away, easily walkable. We keep it in our one-car attached garage. Keeping this lifestyle would be an important consideration if we ever had to relocate.

    1. That’s nice that you can walk to your repair shop. Ours is across town, unfortunately. But, I’m glad to know we’re not the only ones down to one car, and that this arrangement is sustainable. Thanks Meg!

  2. Pingback: The Downsizing Dozen: Tiny Tending | Suburban Satsangs

  3. Pingback: The Downsizing Dozen: Basic Bliss | Suburban Satsangs

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