Targeted Savings Accounts and Funemployment for the One-Car Win!

I had a great experience last week – about as good of an experience as you can have running errands, that is.  🙂  This funemployed spouse/homemaker gig is pretty nice, both for me and for Kyle.


We noticed that our car needed to be repaired, so we made an appointment with our mechanic to drop off the car one weekday morning.  The last time we did this, we dropped the car off together and then took a bus to campus. When the car was ready, I took the bus back and then picked Kyle up.


This time around, since I didn’t have anywhere to be, I decided to spend the day working at the library. I dropped the car off with the mechanic in the morning and walked to the library, which was a bit less than a mile away.  I worked there for about six hours until the mechanic called and then I walked back to get the car.  Aside from getting really sweaty in the 90°F heat during my walk, it all went very smoothly!  I got a lot done while I was at the library and it was much less stressful than having to take the bus back and forth and being concerned about making up the lost work time.


library status


The bill for our car repairs was $382.  Last month we also had a $120 bill regarding the same issue.  I absolutely loved that I had no second thoughts about this bill.  We have been diligently saving into our Cars targeted savings account and have plenty of money there to repair our cars or even buy another (inexpensive) one if necessary. $500 used to be such a huge amount of money in our world, and now I don’t have to worry at all about it if it’s for a necessity.  I mean, it’s still a lot of money that of course I’d rather spend on something fun, but I have no anxiety about spending it to keep our one car running well.


Getting to this nice spot with our finances really just took time.  We were starting at zero cash-wise after we got married four years ago (as Kyle’s cash savings all went toward the student loan payoff fund) and it’s amazing to see how far we’ve come in that time, especially given our low salaries and that we’ve been saving for retirement.


When I picked Kyle up from work in our newly-repaired car, he gave me this really sincere “thank you” for getting the repair done and working at the library for the day (he hadn’t really wanted me to traipse all over the city on the bus).  I felt that he really appreciated my efforts and I was happy to take on the responsibility for this errand so that he didn’t have to worry about missing time from work or having a longer commute on the bus.


I just felt that how we handled the car repair was a wonderful confluence of the one-car lifestyle, my funemployment, and our funded targeted savings accounts!


How do you handle car repairs when you need them? Where do you like to work in your city aside from your home and workplace?


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16 Responses to "Targeted Savings Accounts and Funemployment for the One-Car Win!"

  1. Alicia says:

    We have similar issues when repairs come up, but without good public transportation. Originally I was tacking on another $20 in taxis, which really wasn’t worth it for maybe $60 oil change or tire change-over. What I do now is ask a coworker to swing by on their way past the shop (she offered without prompting, and I get her coffee). Alternatively, I’ve taken to doing errands in the small strip-mall joined to the auto shop. I can get my hair cut, pick up my spices at the bulk store, grab a coffee and then read of write on my tablet until it is done. Not the greatest way to spend a Saturday morning, but I have way more pat uncle than D does, so I do it 🙂
    Alicia recently posted..The Bi-weekly Pay Cycle is Bull

    1. Emily says:

      That is really nice of your coworker to offer you a ride when necessary! Sharing economy FTW. Saturdays would be a great day to get repairs done so you can run errands. You plan sounds very relaxing, actually. There is a Target right across the street from our mechanic but not much else, and I didn’t really want to spend 6 hours wandering around in there waiting for the car! I would be liable to spend a fortune and not even be able to carry it back.

      1. Alicia says:

        by the way, I just realized my tablet did something crazy for autocorrect.

        “pat uncle” is supposed to be “patience” 🙂

        Yeah, if I had to kill 6 hours, I wouldn’t be sticking around, or shopping!
        Alicia recently posted..Go To Meals: Pesto Pizza

        1. Emily says:

          I was wondering what that autocorrect was… 🙂

  2. Woot! Sounds like a win all around. And, you’re so smart for going to the free library instead of a coffee shop or restaurant! We’re lucky in that our mechanic is walking distance from our house–one great advantage of living in the city. I must say, we usually work at home if not in our offices. I do like coffee shops, but I don’t need to spend the money–I’d rather just make coffee at home. Plus, we like hanging out with Frugal Hound while we work :).
    Mrs. Frugalwoods recently posted..Great Trash Finds: The Sister Edition

    1. Emily says:

      You know, it didn’t even occur to me to go into a coffee shop or whatever as I don’t drink beverages and I would definitely be mooching. The library was quite nice as a workspace and there were lots of other people doing the same.

      I like working at home as well and I think if we had a pet that would definitely tip the scale. But I think my productivity at home is lower than when out… I’ll have to keep exploring where/when/how I work best!

  3. My husband using gets the free shuttle service to drive him back home. I could pick him up if he really needed a ride since we still have two cars but why waste the gas and also the inconvenience. I like when I can capitalize on an opportunity to do two things at once and save gas. A couple of times we have been able to stop at an out of town property so he could do an appraisal while we were driving through anyways on the way to my Dad’s cottage. Like 20 mins and then off we go. He gets paid for the mileage. Sweet!
    debs @ debt debs recently posted..Six Month Blogiversary!

    1. Emily says:

      That is a very nice service. I also totally agree about making compound trips to save on time and expenses. Now that I’m working from home/whereever I’m really trying to bundle my appointments and errands so I don’t have to make as many trips away from the house.

  4. I also love having a targeted savings account. I have an emergency fund, but I also allocate money to different things, car repairs is one of them.
    Aldo @ Million Dollar Ninja recently posted..50th Blog Post!!!

    1. Emily says:

      Our balance between our EF and TS accounts is quite off. We only have about $1,300 in our EF but like $20k or so in TS. It’s definitely an area of our finances that needs rebalancing. What other categories do you have in your TS? I think we have too many at this point!

  5. I’m glad everything went so smoothly regarding the car repair! Really convenient the library was only a short distance away. The one time I went there, I also encountered some screaming babies =). Right now, if car repairs needed to be done, we are very lucky that my boyfriend’s coworker lives in the same apartment complex as us. They can follow him to the shop, continue on their way to work, and pick up the car when it’s ready as their job is pretty lax.
    Erin @ Journey to Saving recently posted..Frugal Meal #3: Waffles!

    1. Emily says:

      Yeah, there was some kind of mommy and me group going on and I guess the walls aren’t sufficiently soundproof! But it was fine when I had headphones in.

      That is very convenient that the mechanic is on the way to your BF’s work! Ours is close to where we used to live but definitely out of the way now.

  6. Having lived in NYC for my entire adult life, I’m getting close to 30 without ever having purchased a car. The longer I can keep it that way, the better 🙂
    Stefanie @ The Broke and Beautiful Life recently posted..Why You Should Give Up On Being The Best

    1. Emily says:

      I totally agree. I was very bummed when I had to buy my first car after living car-free for a year. I really want to live somewhere with good public transit so we can get by with 1 car even with 2 jobs.

  7. It’s seems like you and Kyle are very open and expressive to each other. By the way, is that a local library? I just wonder how much you are paid per hour in the library. I am thinking to have a part-time job in a library coz I like the feeling of being in the library.. there’s so much to learn.

    1. Emily says:

      Haha, what I meant by working at the library was not working for the library but rather working in the library – just using the space to work on my own projects! But I like libraries as well and I think it would be fun to have a PT job there.

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