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...to want to keep my car?

(74 Posts)
Splashingincuddles Sat 04-Feb-17 14:14:40

I am on maternity leave and expecting our DD any day. We already have a DS who is 2.5. As a teacher I get pretty good maternity pay but this is going to decrease significantly as the weeks go on and we are also doing a lot of work on our house, which is costly. We live in a village in a fairly rural location (it is not walking distance to the nearest town/supermarket but we are on a bus route).

My DH has suggested that we run only one car while I'm not needing to commute to work - admittedly my car is old and does cost a lot to run and maintain - his is paid for using a company car allowance.

Are there any other mums who have done maternity leave with no car? I can walk/bus DS to preschool and I am not at all averse to going on a bus or train for a day out. I am also happy to do grocery shopping online. I just feel like I'm going to feel a little 'trapped' and will have to organise car sharing with military precision. I'm also envisaging a total nightmare when trying to manoeuvre and manhandle a pram/newborn and toddler onto a bus or train.

I'm wondering if I'm being totally unreasonable - is a car really necessary or is it a luxury when finances are tight? How have other car-less mums managed with small children?

Sirzy Sat 04-Feb-17 14:17:54

What will you do when you go back to work?

SaucyDough Sat 04-Feb-17 14:19:50

Sell the car and buy a more efficient one when you go back to work.

rubberducker Sat 04-Feb-17 14:24:00

No way would i be without a car on mat leave. It's hard enough getting out the house with a baby and toddler without then having to factor in fitting into a set timetable for travel. I know some people have to but I love the freedom being able to drive gives me and would give up a lot before I got rid of my car.

Floralnomad Sat 04-Feb-17 14:25:51

I would never be without a car , is it possible to drop your DH off at work some days and you have the car for the day as that's the only way I'd be considering it .

Nope I wouldn't be without it. I don't mind getting trains and buses but it is such a faff with a baby and a toddler. I have done it if I've been without the car for any reason and it's hard going. You are stuck to a fixed not always reliable timetable. It takes away the option of just popping out if it's a nice day or you need a few things for lunch. If you can keep a hold of the car I would.

Foldedtshirt Sat 04-Feb-17 14:34:40

Day by day it sounds like it would be manageable but what about trips to relatives and friends? That could well be what you need it most for. What did you use the car for most in your first maternity leave?

Jellybean83 Sat 04-Feb-17 14:35:00

No way would I give up my car. I'd cut costs in other areas before thinking about the car.

Janek Sat 04-Feb-17 14:35:58

I know this isn"t what you asked, but i believe you can get your msternity pay paid in equal installments, rather than having it tail off towards the end - perhaps this is something you should look into.

cate16 Sat 04-Feb-17 14:36:11

If there is someway to share DH car then yes, otherwise I would try and keep the car.
We are semi rural village and yes there are buses, but not very reliable, and for us two return adult bus trips a week probably equals the expense of running a car.

rookiemere Sat 04-Feb-17 14:38:02

Can your DH use public transport to get to work, or indeed cycle there?
If so say that you are happy to go down to one car, but it's split equally between you during the week.
If not then I'd hold on to it, or replace for a more reliable model.

KatieScarlett Sat 04-Feb-17 14:39:08

What's he giving up in return?

Topseyt Sat 04-Feb-17 14:53:37

Hold onto it unless it gives up the ghost on you.

We also live fairly rurally. There are some buses but on the whole our area is not hot on public transport.

DH used to want to sell my car when the children were small and things were tight for us. I have always dug my heels in. That car was in his name for reasons I won't derail the thread with. I have insisted that each subsequent car I have had be bought in my name, with me as the only registered keeper. DH knows better than to ever bring the subject up again.

Why should you be the one to be isolated like that, and it would be isolating.

honeylulu Sat 04-Feb-17 15:00:28

I would keep your car if you can.
Shortly before I had my first child (12 years ago when we were much poorer) my car was stolen and when found was a write off. I couldn't afford to replace it, even with the insurance money as it has been quite old (though reliable) so I spent my maternity leave carless.
It was OK I suppose as we live in town centre so I could walk to doctors/ health visitor/ shops etc. But there was lots I couldn't do - baby groups I wanted to go to but were in church halls further out. I sometimes met new friends who'd invite me to their houses but I had no easy way if getting there.
My parents were miles away and I had to get my husband to drive me there and back at weekends if I wanted to visit. Likewise I could only do big supermarket shops with him whereas id have preferred to get this out of the way in the week.
My second maternity leave (with a car) was much happier. I didn't need to drive every day but it was great to have options!

Allthewaves Sat 04-Feb-17 15:02:43

We went and brought a second car after me bring o a month of maternity leave as we had same idea as your dh. In reality it didn't work. Preschool was 25 min walk then there was trips to the doctors, meeting with friends ect. I discovered I'm quite a spur of the moment person. I like big able to nip to tescos, go to soft play ect without military planning.

rollonthesummer Sat 04-Feb-17 15:03:21

Nope. I didn't have a car for 8 weeks when in maternity leave and I nearly went insane. Friends were good with giving us lifts but I felt I was taking the piss and couldn't reciprocate. You say you are rural-that would make up my mind even more!

Will your husband be giving anything up or just you??

Allthewaves Sat 04-Feb-17 15:03:42

Or just being able to go somewhere with baby while ds was in preschool for 2.5hrs.

Allthewaves Sat 04-Feb-17 15:04:28

And I live near train station and good bis rpute

measles64 Sat 04-Feb-17 15:04:45

Bussing with one child is doable, with two no way find other areas to cut back in.

Iknowyouwontlikethis Sat 04-Feb-17 15:09:44

I have never had a car. I am expecting baby no 3. With dsr 1 aged 3 and ds2 aged 2. Do all shopping online. Use buses trains if the place is necessary to go to. Or we go when dh isn't working. I live close to nursery so we can walk. And we have a few local shops and we do 2 local activities in the village a week which is enough for us. Dh keeps suggesting another car but to be honest I am quite happy like this.

bloodyteenagers Sat 04-Feb-17 15:09:51

So what's he giving up?
Or will his life go totally unchanged?
Then there's the cost of public transport. It can be very expensive. Trips to the beach etc via the train depending on where you are and going can be ridiculous unless you book in advance.

I don't drive lol. But I spent years in the country. Relying on the bus to get anywhere. The 20 minute car ride to x place 45 minutes on a bus.

IntoTheDeep Sat 04-Feb-17 15:10:54

I'm sure doing maternity leave without a car would be manageable if you had to, even rurally, but I'd be reluctant to voluntarily give up the car.

And aside from anything else, won't you need it when you finish maternity leave and return to work?

Splashingincuddles Sat 04-Feb-17 15:11:47

Thank you all for your responses. I knew I wasn't being unreasonable!

DH wouldn't be 'giving up' anything in return, but his car would become a shared vehicle which would mean, I guess, that he'd also lose flexibility. He sometimes works from home then when he's actually at work it's in all sorts of locations, so he definitely needs a car to do his job around 2/3 days per week. I know that we'd be able to share but I also know that, in reality, his needs for work would come first and I'd have to work around them. I'm also a pretty spur of the moment kind of person and would have to work hard to adapt to the meticulate planning that would be needed.

ShelaghTurner Sat 04-Feb-17 15:13:16

I'd never give up my car. It would be last in the line of sacrifices. I couldn't bear to be trapped in my own little town, it would send me crazy.

Splashingincuddles Sat 04-Feb-17 15:13:38

When I go back to work we would need to buy a new car for me. We have been looking at doing so recently due to the terrible economy of the banger I drive now, but it's not affordable at the moment. It will be in a year's time when I return to work.

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