I want to buy a new car

Handruin

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In addition to what Clocker mentioned you'd need to look at each of the major credit bureaus if you're interested in something like a mortgage or something that's going to take a decent look into your credit history. When I went to get pre-approved a couple months back I knew my FICO score was mid 800's but they said they have to go by the lowest reported from the three major bureaus. I've seen my number fluctuate but it's also unclear why given I've not opened any new lines of credit or had any issues with missed payments. I knew it would drop a bit once I did the pre-approval due to the credit inquiries being made. Also as Clocker said anything about 800 makes no real difference in terms of special rates that I've seen.
 
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I'm still in the high-700s because I both don't have enough lines of credit (3) and the lines of credit are too young (avg. 3.5 years, oldest 6 years). Without any large purchases coming up soon, I'm tempted to bite the bullet now and get some additional lines of credit immediately and then let them age.
 

Handruin

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I'm still in the high-700s because I both don't have enough lines of credit (3) and the lines of credit are too young (avg. 3.5 years, oldest 6 years). Without any large purchases coming up soon, I'm tempted to bite the bullet now and get some additional lines of credit immediately and then let them age.
This is what I did. When I got my first salaried job back in 2000 I opened a credit card. The card has changed three banks since then due to acquisitions but I've kept it open even though I hate the current bank associated with it because of the 16 years of history. Otherwise I don't have many lines of credit open. I'm probably at 3 myself if not counting a small loan with my bank.
 

snowhiker

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I think my OCD was triggered when I saw the oscillating behavior of my "credit score." I know it doesn't matter and I have no major purchases in the immediate (or not so immediate) future, plus I have more credit than I really need right now. Just more a nagging desire to figure out the credit score behavior.

I was only thinking of getting an AMEX because I don't like having to use a debit card to buy anything for, probably near-irrational, fear of data breeches.

I'd like the info Clocker, but giving my SSN and other needed info to Credit Karma "scares" me even more. But thanks for the insight. I might just get that AMEX when the opportunity comes up again.

The average FICO score is 695 as of April 2015 according to a FICO post here. So it is interesting that only a score of 700 is needed to get the best deal/rate. I would have guessed the threshold would be higher or at least some type of sliding scale, aka, 700=good, 750=better and 800+=great rate/deal. Interesting.

DD I believe that 3-4 open accounts is the optimal number, at least from what I've read online so you should be good. More than 5 would be somewhat of a negative, at least if ever thing else is perfect credit-wise. I don't exactly recall but I remember that when the average age hits 8 years your score takes a nice jump.

Same thing happened to me Handruin. I have a CalFed (California Federal) CC, which became Washington Mutual, then Chase. Oldest card with the highest limit.
 

Handruin

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For whatever it's worth (I'm one sample) I did use Credit Karma and I haven't had any issues. I researched around and it seems legit but it won't be as accurate as getting the true score from the main three bureaus from what I remember. I used it as a point of reference before applying for a loan and it was pretty close to what was reported from the actual three major credit bureaus.
 

jtr1962

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831 for me last few months. I have four credit cards but never run a balance from month to month. I also tend to only use a small portion of my credit. I still have an outstanding student loan but as far as I know they ceased collection efforts after I sent them a few nasty letters. Apparently it's not reflected in my credit score.
 

Clocker

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More of just a curiosity thing for me too. We have no plans to get any new credit in the near future so we keep both of our credit reports frozen to help prevent identity theft.
 

Stereodude

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What if you want to refinance your mortgage, buy a new house, or finance a car?
Well, I don't need to refinance. My interest rate is under 4%. I don't plan on moving anytime soon. Last, I don't foresee a need to ever finance a car in the future, but I suppose nothing is etched in stone.
 

Howell

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More of just a curiosity thing for me too. We have no plans to get any new credit in the near future so we keep both of our credit reports frozen to help prevent identity theft.
I'm going to have to look into that.

We seem to make a major purchase every other year but we don't know what our credit scores are. The is a very limited amount you can do to affect it unless you are financially irresposible; and It is only a guideline the bankers use and we know our bankers. Current debt to income ratio and current assets are a much better indicator of ability to pay.
 

Striker

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I think my OCD was triggered when I saw the oscillating behavior of my "credit score." I know it doesn't matter and I have no major purchases in the immediate (or not so immediate) future, plus I have more credit than I really need right now. Just more a nagging desire to figure out the credit score behavior.

I was only thinking of getting an AMEX because I don't like having to use a debit card to buy anything for, probably near-irrational, fear of data breeches.
If it helps your decision any, Costco is discontinuing their relationship with Amex this year and switching to Visa.

https://www.americanexpress.com/us/content/program-update/

https://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/credit-cards/costco-amex-cardholders-get-new-card-number-not-new-account/
 

Handruin

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Am I the only one who doesn't care about my credit score? I have no idea what it is. It's totally irrelevant to any part of my life.
Normally I don't care but I was looking into a mortgage I wanted to make sure everything was ok with my credit before getting approved. If the number was bad I'd suspect something happened.
 
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Am I the only one who doesn't care about my credit score? I have no idea what it is. It's totally irrelevant to any part of my life.
I'll likely be financing a car in the next year or so. In the past I've financed cars for 0.9% through dealerships (with good credit). Even if I have the money I can do better than 1% elsewhere (managed 5% in the market last year).
 

Howell

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It's a worthwhile thought but you only get that low an interest rate if you buy a new car. Keep the car 5 years or less and you lose more in depreciation than you pay in interest by a factor of 10.
 
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I've always ended up buying new cars because I want tech that is only in new cars (this time it will be Tesla Autopilot). Once you are buying the car and eating the depreciation, then you get to make the decision about interest vs. cash.
 

Handruin

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I'm doing the same right now with my current car. I took the loan with a low APR and invested some of the money elsewhere in the market to get hopefully more than what I'm paying on the loan.
 

snowhiker

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My FICO score changed again:



Score is either 834 or 806. Last month at this time I had zero balance, this month my balance was around $850. Seems if my credit utilization is 5-7% score drops to 806, but if I'm all paid off score goes up to 834. Or visa-versa if they report score based on the previous month.
 
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Do not want a hybrid. The added complexity and weight of two different propulsion systems in a car causes an allergic reaction in me.

Also, the performance of the Volt seems pretty lame. The cheapest AWD Model S has a 0-60 of 5.2s. Slower than what I have now, but enough. The numbers I can see on the Volt put it at between 7.1s and 7.8s. This is slower than an eGolf.
 

jtr1962

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Do not want a hybrid. The added complexity and weight of two different propulsion systems in a car causes an allergic reaction in me.
Amen to that a thousand times over. IMO the only reason for hybrids to exist might be to get a general public resistant to change used to the idea of an electric propulsion system without being dependent upon a battery. And the need for doing this really only exists because of all the FUD spread about batteries.

Either go straight electric or straight ICE, preferably the former given that ICE is rapidly heading towards obsolescence for a whole host of reasons.
 

Will Rickards

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I'm just saying take a test drive in sport mode.
It will give you the feeling you're after. It feels dangerous.
Those 0-60 numbers don't tell the whole story.
If you still don't like it, so be it.

It sounds like you drive a lot. Range anxiety / charging time would be an issue with the tesla.
The volt isn't like other hybrids. It is always EV. Sometimes the energy is just being generated by a gas generator. And if the generator is running and your going 70+mph, why not use some of the engine to help out power the wheels.

I realize I have an owners bias.

The BMW i8 is more your style I would bet, but it is way out of that 40K price range.
 

Will Rickards

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IMO the only reason for hybrids to exist might be to get a general public resistant to change used to the idea of an electric propulsion system without being dependent upon a battery. And the need for doing this really only exists because of all the FUD spread about batteries.
This is a bit of a black and white view. Battery weight / recharge time is really an issue here. There is only so much range that can be equipped in cars. Battery technology improvement doesn't happen that fast, despite hearing of the next big thing every year. It really does take time. The 200+ mile range we're getting in tesla and other EV (bolt) are great. This handles like 80-90% of drivers I'm sure. But there are use cases where it doesn't work. It doesn't help the guy driving to multiple sites or making deliveries. It also does't help when you're making a longer drive to another state. I mean there are plenty of people who commute pretty far into new york every day. And there isn't the charging infrastructure built in to the parking structures in NY to handle if all those cars were electric. Battery/electric infrastructure is not there yet but even with it in place it takes time to charge. So having a gas generator in the car is not a bad idea.

The volt has the battery range to handle the majority of daily commute trips battery only. It then uses the gas generator to generate the electricity.
I'd prefer if the battery range was about double. But I'd still want the gas generator. We're still years and years away from an all electric car future.

To double the battery range in the same space, we're talking double the energy density. This has thermal considerations as well.
 

jtr1962

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Let's be realistic here. Batteries have their limitations but the oil companies spread a lot of FUD out of self-interest. Apparently you bought into it. Something like 95% of car trips are under 40 miles. Almost all are under 200 miles. Obviously a person who drives 500 miles a day can't use an electric car in their current state but that's an outlier. It's also like saying a sports car can't double as a moving van. You tailor the vehicle to the needs. If you almost never drive more than 200 miles like the average person, an EV is fine for you. You rent a gas car for the rare long trips.

The whole grid not up to it yet thing is more FUD. Power companies have excess capacity at night, which is exactly when most EVs would be charging.

I'd prefer if the battery range was about double. But I'd still want the gas generator.

Any yet if you forgo the gas generator you get rid of a lot of complexity, and you can double your range yet again.

We're still years and years away from an all electric car future.

Probably closer than you think. Eventually mandates for ZEVs in places like NYC will provide a large captive audience for EVs. That's what the manufacturers want-a more or less guaranteed large number of customers before they tool up to make large numbers of EVs, at which point EVs will cost less to make than gas cars.

And there isn't the charging infrastructure built in to the parking structures in NY to handle if all those cars were electric. Battery/electric infrastructure is not there yet but even with it in place it takes time to charge. So having a gas generator in the car is not a bad idea.
Charging infrastructure already exists in NYC. For fleet use, which is the primary vehicle use in NYC given that private autos aren't used regularly here, charging needs are transparent to the customer. A fleet like Uber will just need to ensure enough charged vehicles are on the streets to meet demand. Easy enough to do. All the vehicles hit the streets during peak times. Off-peak some percentage take turns charging so they all have enough charge to get through the peak time.

For the small number of private autos here, EV works great too. These cars generally are just used on alternate side parking days when they're moved from one side of the street to the other. I'm not joking, either. A lot of people who own cars in NYC use them less than 1,000 miles a year, much of it just to move from one parking spot to another. They don't really need cars at all, but they come from a generation where having one is like a security blanket.

Some links worth reading:

http://aecn.timehorse.com/2015/04/hybrid-drivers-and-their-holier-than.html

http://oilprice.com/Energy/Energy-G...Oil-Demand-By-13-Million-Barrels-Per-Day.html

http://evobsession.com/5-reasons-teslas-trump-every-other-electric-car-in-consumers-eyes/

https://forums.teslamotors.com/foru...-ev-fast-chargers-destabilize-electrical-grid

https://www.reddit.com/r/teslamotor..._and_ev_drivers_fight_fud_and_disinformation/
 
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Stereodude

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The whole grid not up to it yet thing is more FUD. Power companies have excess capacity at night, which is exactly when most EVs would be charging.
Because you get peak power from your solar and wind power plants at night right?

Probably closer than you think. Eventually mandates for ZEVs in places like NYC will provide a large captive audience for EVs. That's what the manufacturers want-a more or less guaranteed large number of customers before they tool up to make large numbers of EVs, at which point EVs will cost less to make than gas cars.
If EV's are so great they'll make it without mandates. The car didn't displace the horse and buggy because of a mandate. The cell phone hasn't effectively replaced the landline because of a mandate. People actually wanted them. I know you're madly in love with the idea of a totalitarian central command and control gov't, the kind that can force people to give up their fossil fuel powered cars or use public transit after forcing them out of the suburbs and back into the city, but that's not how it works in the US.
 
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jtr1962

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Because you get peak power from your solar and wind power plants at night right?
I'm talking about the baseline power supply which is mostly nuclear, coal, CNG, and hydroelectric. None of those can easily be throttled down at night, particularly nuclear, so the excess power is there for the taking. Right now we often just burn it up in resistor grids if there are no takers. EVs charging at night might be like found money for electric companies.

If EV's are so great they'll make it without mandates. The car didn't displace the horse and buggy because of a mandate. The cell phone hasn't effectively replaced the landline because of a mandate. People actually wanted them. I know you're madly in love with the idea of a totalitarian central command and control gov't, the kind that can force people to give up their fossil fuel powered cars or use public transit and forcing them out of the suburbs and back into the city, but that's not how it works in the US.
ZEV mandates are so people in major population centers where motor vehicles converge can breathe clean air. People > cars. Especially in cities. Nobody is forcing anyone to give up fossil-fuel powered cars but there will probably come a time in the not too distant future where you can't drive them into cities. There's even a precedent for it. NYC long ago banned first steam locomotives and later diesel locomotives from operating in the city. Same reason. More recently we banned smoking in lots of public places. Someone's supposed freedom to smoke or drive a fossil fuel car ends when it impacts someone else. Someone's supposed freedom to live in the suburbs or drive everywhere ends when someone else is paying for it. Central control is pretty much what we have now, but it's OK with you I guess since that central control mostly tailors markets so people drive everywhere and live in the suburbs, which is apparently what you prefer. If we bought the cost of living in cities back down to something reasonable, you would see a mass exodus back to cities without any government coercion. You would still be free to live in a suburb and drive, but it will likely cost a heck of a lot more than now. Remember back in the turn of the 20th century when we had small government mainly the rich or farmers lived in the country. We also couldn't afford anything but dirt roads getting there for the most part. The massive, government subsidized Interstate highway system jump started mass migration to suburbia. Now the bill is coming due to repair those highways and we don't have the money. This time around the cities aren't going to pay for it.
 
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LunarMist

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How many years do you drive 15-20K or more? At 12K or less there is little benefit. The depreciation cost and insurance are the bulk of car cost, not fuel.
 

jtr1962

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How many years do you drive 15-20K or more? At 12K or less there is little benefit. The depreciation cost and insurance are the bulk of car cost, not fuel.
Repair are a big factor here also. I've read from many sources even with a higher initial purchase price the TCO of EVs is less than ICE cars. With economies of scale from mass production there won't even be a higher initial purchase price for EVs. People won't buy an EV before they need a new car just to save on operating costs BUT when they finally need a new vehicle it makes all the sense in the world to buy EVs unless you're one of the few who drives long distances regularly. Also, battery prices are coming down faster than even I thought they would. We're fast approaching the time when EVs will be competitive without any subsidies. One of the articles I linked to put that time around 2020 to 2022.

Also worth a mention is autonomous cars are going to turn the entire paradigm of car ownership on its head. It will no longer be necessary to own a vehicle, even in the suburbs, when you can have an autonomous car at your door in a few minutes. The autonomous cars would be EVs simply because it would provide the lowest expenses for the fleet operator. Charging would be transparent to the customer. If a vehicle needs to be charged, it's taken out of the pool available to customers.
 

Handruin

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Are you referring to the physical appearance of the car or the car in general? I admit it's fairly understated, not real flashy, but that's okay.

[video=youtube_share;YbLweooe3aM]https://youtu.be/YbLweooe3aM[/video]
A car 15 years newer out-performs a 2001 BMW by 1.4 seconds. That's advancement! lol As a huge sleeper it's a fun gag but the car looks so dull and boring.
 
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