The true cost of automobiles

Cars are expensive. I am not just talking about gasoline, maintenance, parking, insurance, repairs, and the cost of the car itself. Not to mention the cost to the

Rambler with tuck under garage

environment. We don’t even have to own a car to share in the high cost.

As a Realtor, I can tell you that houses with garages are more expensive than houses without garages. Where I live we also pay for a permit to park on the street. Condos with parking garages ramps or outdoor parking spaces are more expensive than those without.

People who do not own an automobile or drive at all also pay for them through taxes and higher housing costs that are related to including parking. If. you look around next time you are out you will see many parked cars and parking lots everywhere.

Also, notice how much land is dedicated to parking lots, that rarely fill up and imagine other uses for that land.

If cars were living organisms we night call them an invasive species because so much of our landscape has been changed or built to accommodate cars.  Auto emissions have wiped out other species. People live in places where cars are a necessity.

A few years ago my household went from two cars to one car for two drivers. It was an adjustment. We learned to plan ahead and to combine errands when possible. I enjoy biking and walking and am able to complete errands without a car. Living in the city helps.

The picture shows a rambler built in the late 1950s with a one-car garage. Homes built today usually have at least two garage stalls and three-car garages are very popular.

We take cars for granted. Sometimes it is hard to imagine life without the. I am not sure my business could exist without a car to use when showing houses. A car makes it possible to cram a lot of appointments into a day and to easily work in nearby suburbs.

We need to consider the cost of reliance on oil and what it means to the world economy.

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