The Chainlink

Some one in the "Awesome Cyclists" discussion mentioned wanting to sell their car, but that it wasn't germane to the thread. I have been on the verge of selling mine for a long time. I'd be interested in hearing stories of others who finally took the plunge and sold their car. Any thoughts or advice?

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Moved here without a car two years ago knowing I wouldn't need one and with few exceptions haven't. I had a Zip Car membership for a year but only used it a few times. For $11 an hour I'll deal with tediously long public transportation trips once in awhile. If it wasn't for the annual membership I may still be using it but I could never justify paying that much to drive around for a few hours.

I'm always amused in the winter when it's obvious that people haven't driven in days. With the cost of car ownership I think some of these people would be better off joining a car sharing program.
Cheers to you, Brendan.

Do try to avoid smugness once you are car-free...smugness is unattractive whatever its source :)

Being able to get more or less anywhere in the city without my cars (unless I want to) and, specifically, on my bikes, is one of the things I enjoy most about living in Chicago. But I won't begrudge other people the way they choose to live, and besides, I've got three cars myself. They get driven very little, but I lovelovelove cars and owning them is pretty cheap.

David
Me and my wife have both lived our entire adult lifes (going onto 25 years) car-free. (although both our parents had cars). When we were younger it was for various reasons (me growing up in the Netherlands, my wife moving from country to country very frequently)

But we have been car-free by choice in Chicago for over 12 years. Here is why it works for us
-Home. We bought our condo 9 years ago. When looking for a place to live we had criteria beyond a nice and affordable neighborhood. It also had to be walking distance to a grocery store/hardware store/vet/haircuttery/etc., etc. We ended up in Andersonville in probably a smaller place than we could have afforded in other neighborhoods, but it was part of the decision
-Public transportation. We live close to the 22 Clark, the 50 Damen and the Red line. Together they cover a big swat of place that we go to. We also live a 8 minute bike ride from the Ravenswood Metra, which drops me off two blocks from work, on days I am too lazy to ride my bike. All of this figured into our decision of where to buy our house
-Alternate transportation. We don't use iGo or Zipcar, because we really don't have a need for it. We rent a car for the weekend maybe 5-6 times a year to visit friends in the burbs, or lately go for bike trips in neighboring states. We recently bought a bobtrailer for bigger and heavier loads, but even that hasn't been used as often as I thought it would. With stores like Target and Home Depot now readily available in the city (that wasn't the case 10-12 years ago) we rarely need to drive to the suburbs to get something at a bigbox store
- Lifestyle. Besides out-of-state biketrips we don't have a lot of hobbies that require automotive transport. And while I absolutely love food, we rarely go to the other side of town, just to try this cute little restaurant. We also use the internet (Amazon predominantly) to shop for a lot of 'stuff'. It's often cheaper, tax free, no shipping and delivered to your door. We also avoid that 'errand running' that my colleagues and friends in the burbs often occupy themselves with on a Saturday.
- LBS. If you are going to rely on your bike, make sure you have a good and affordable bike shop in your neighborhood. Try to shop there often and let them know who you are. I found one: they treat me nice, and take my sometimes dumb questions seriously. In return I make almost all my bike purchases there.

Frank
Do it! I've been car-free for more than 20 years. Just do it.
The adhesive company on Fullerton (north side of) just west of the Kennedy often has a sign up that they're looking for a chemist.

I may have screwed up your quote, but editing in html is not my forte, sorry.

J.G. MC said:
Anyone know of anyone looking to hire a Chemist? :)
Have you thought about teaching?

http://projects.ccc.edu/JobList/ViewJob.aspx?jobid=791

J.G. MC said:
Anyone know of anyone looking to hire a Chemist? :)
maybe that was me on "awesome cyclists" talking about selling my car.

anyway, i still have my car, but i've heard from other people who are car-less: a friend has has been car-less now for a year or so and seems to be fine. the guy who made my bike trailer has been car-less for a few years, and told me there were only a couple times he wanted his car back. but that was while waiting for the bus in the rain, and he soon realized how silly he was for thinking such a thing, not regreting going car-less...he's lost 50 pounds.

as for me, i can't wait to stop paying for insurance, oil changes, garage, diesel fill-ups, etc.

when i'm on my bike i get to interact with people, and my senses get a workout, e.g. smells from the chocolate factory. in my car i get sensory deprivation.

good luck with pulling the trigger.

PS. my sister has decided to buy my car. whoo-hoo!
Sold my car in March. What a relief!! I am so much happier without the monthly payments, insurance, gas etc!
Plus I love the new bike I bought with all that extra CASH
Mine caught fire and thats how I started riding bikes again
I 2nd Howard's comments about not shopping around for the best price. I support my nearby businesses, and am so grateful to be able to take care of most of my routine "needs" within a 5 mile radius.

h3 said:
Re: extra cash:
Used to drive around looking for the best price on something . . . now I buy if I'm there and the price is reasonably reasonable and I have a way to transport whatever it is, and the thousands I save each year on car ownership make up for any missed sale prices many many times over.

JFred4 said:
Sold my car in March. What a relief!! I am so much happier without the monthly payments, insurance, gas etc!
Plus I love the new bike I bought with all that extra CASH
I woudn't mind the idea of car sharing between two or three friends.
I'm about 80%-90% bikey, but my work schedule throws me for a loop, 4 out of every 16 Sundays I start at 6am, which is challenging.

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