They say that if you want to know who owns your assets, just look to whom the monthly payment is going. With that, as of today, Angie and I own our cars. Not just one of the two, but BOTH. I made the final payments on both of our loans today. We planned the loan durations to be co-terminus - so they are both paid off together. Now, we've just gotten a nice monthly raise in that we no longer have those payments.
Angie's van is a 2002 Dodge Caravan with no bells and whistles. In fact, it has a little 4-cylinder engine and has almost 100K miles. But, the body is in fine condition and we're hoping we can get an additional three years with it. That will allow us to meet our committment to the building campaign at church AND save a years worth of payments. However, she is having some engine trouble, and we may alter our plans to get her in something more reliable sooner than planned - just don't tell her that!
Mine is a 2005 Silverado and has less than 45K miles. Add to the fact that I just don't drive as much as I used to because I get to work from home and I'm hoping I get another ten years with it. Again, we may alter that as mine doesn't have any bells or whistles, isn't big enough in the back seat for two tall teenagers, and may be used as a learning/borrow car for those teens that are closing in on driving age in the next couple of years.
Whatever we do we are going to enjoy not having a car payment for a while. When we went through a budgeting exercise several years ago, getting out from car payments was a big goal. We've reached that, and it feels good. Literally, the ONLY debt we carry is on one credit card (80% of the balance is reimbursible from work) and our mortgage. It's time to redo our budget and now the payment we'll be making is to our savings account.
Talk about liberating.