Gas Mileage/Fuel Economy

Jordan and I, as part of our conversations about growing our family, have been talking about vehicles.  Right now, we are a single vehicle house hold with a 2011 Ford Escape.  When we bought the vehicle, we thought it would be a great family car - able to handle all of our needs as our family grew.  We have found out two things.
  1. When driving 90K round trip every day, fuel economy is more important than we planned for
  2. When you have two shepherds and try to go camping, travel for Christmas or give people with luggage rides - your hatchback isn't as big as you think it is.
Our average monthly gas bill since moving to our new house is $385 with a high of $575.64 and a low of $188.17.

The advertised fuel economy for the Escape was 8.3L-10.4L/100K.  Here's what we're actually getting, shown in both L/100K and MPG.  You can see we are near, or over the top of the range each time!

1 km = 0.621371 miles
1 liter = 0.264172 US gallons

A large part of this is because our commute is typically in stop and go traffic.  On the dates were the economy is better, that typically falls during a highway road trip.

Size is the next issue - we have found over the last two years that we stuff the vehicle to the MAX! and we still often don't have enough room during Christmas or family trips. We're certain that once we have a little one, it's going to get even more cramped (if that's even possible).

So, what are we going to do about it?

We're going to investigate some of our options including trading the Escape in and purchasing two, 2-3 year old vehicles.  One, a pickup truck to be used on family trips/weekends with dogs/kids and a very small, commuter car with high fuel efficiency.  We currently owe about $19,000 on the Escape.  This isn't something that we're going to do tomorrow - but you know me, I like to have a plan and our plan has always been to get a second vehicle once we start our family...so we're just planning ahead.

What would you do?


The Deck, is Done!

Not only is the deck finished, but it actually came in under budget!!  I had originally planned on spending $5,596.64 - but i had mis-measured - the total square footage came to 180 rather than 210!  At $15/sq/ft - that's a $450 difference.  I had also over estimated the railing costs by $150.40 and the stairs by $308.04.

The grand total for the deck is $4,642.64.

...that's $954 less than we had budgeted for!


June Networth Update

It's hard to believe another month has gone by already.  Over the last few weeks, there has been a lot of progress on our big backyard project - not so much that I can adjust the value of our home but enough that our networth is declining.

We have paid for about half of the backyard project, and will owe the rest once the deck and garage have been completed.

Here is a breakdown of our networth as of June 1, 2013. For anyone who's not read one of these updates before - recall that our homes value is based on a tax assessment currently, which is not necessarily reflective of the homes value on the market.

You might noticed that there is another Joint Credit Card on the list...Jordan and I bit the bullet and got a joint Amex/Costco card.  We've also used other people's memberships, but at this point we're doing it on our own.

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