Millennials and Driving

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I heard about this article on the radio this morning. I find it very interesting. It's hard to imagine viable alternatives to cars around this area (DFW), but they are there and slowly increasing. Also, there are more housing units being built in areas that might allow for alternative means of transport. Here's one of my theories on this topic. I think the worsening of urban/suburban gridlock in areas like this are sucking what little fun remained in driving. My relationship with cars has changed dramatically. It's more of an appliance to me now and I just want it to be economical and consume as little of my free time as possible. Millennials and Cars
 
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I think it's only due to the economy. If their income was the equivalent of the gen x'ers at their age they would be driving more. Everyone wants to tell the story of an urban renewal or a paradigm shift, but I think it's a crock. Cars are expensive and that generation got hit harder than anyone in the recession.
 
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If I lived in the 'burbs I'd probably bike. I did that in college (actually was carless) and I liked it. Perfect it was not. But it sure beat dealing with parking issues etc. I like driving but hate city driving with a passion. However biking is hard with family, as the kids are kinda small. Public transit only truly exists in very large cities, and those places are the places I'd hate to live in.
 
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I'm probably moving this spring to an apartment that's going to be walking distance from work. I'll walk/bike to work. I will have 2 vehicles ... but walk to work!
 
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Nothing wrong with that. Would be odd if you were making payments, but, if moving&walking actually saved money as compared to now, then why not? A vehicle *can* be an investment that *ought* to last decades (road salt notwithstanding).
 
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Originally Posted By: DBMaster
My relationship with cars has changed dramatically. It's more of an appliance to me now and I just want it to be economical and consume as little of my free time as possible.
Mine has as well, though I don't think it has to do with traffic or the types of roads I drive. I'm going to say that it's due to a maturing of character, but not in the sense that someone who likes fast cars is "immature", but in the sense that I've grown to like different things in life. I used to be all about V-8 engines, loud exhausts, and RWD. Nothing else would do. Certainly nothing that burned rice! Fifteen years later, I have a family with two kids, a job that's not terribly stressful but that is busy nonetheless, and I drive two FWD-based rice burners. Where'd I go wrong?? smile I still enjoy driving as much as I ever did. In fact, perhaps I enjoy it more, because I get to do it less often than I'd like. And I love maintaining equipment and machinery. I rotate my own tires...even the ones on my single axle trailer. You can take the car guy out of the car clubs, but you can't take the itch to wrench out of the car guy I guess. My tastes for "high performance", however, have moved from speed and thrills to efficiency. I like my cars quiet. I like them neat and tidy...trim, like a tightly-tailored suit, with nothing hanging out. It takes as much effort, and provides as much enjoyment, as someone who's into speed. It's just a different kind of enjoyment.
 
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Feb 21, 2011
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I don't see anything alarming about "Millennials" living in city environments, and not owning cars, combined with most of them being young enough that they don't earn very much money. News Flash: Young people almost ALWAYS have preferred living in Urban environments. They way they get to meet more young people. You're not going to meet very many young people living out in the sticks of South Dakota, or the hills of North Carolina. If you live in the sticks, you need a car to get around. If you live in an urban city, usually anything that you need is close enough to walk or take Public Transportation to. If you work in a city, and are young, chances are you're working a lower end job, like retail, and not making much money. Can't really afford that new BMW 328 on a JC Penney stocker/clerk salary. Heck, probably can't even afford a 10 year old used one. When these kids get older, marry, and have kids, they will earn more money, and move to places where raising a family will require vehicles. Then they will be sort of like us, but not quite. But, first, you have to get them to want to work, and make money. My wife's 22 year old isn't in school, doesn't have a job, and lives in the basement of her bf's parent's house. She doesn't want to go to school, she doesn't want to drive to an area where she can get any type of job, but is perfectly content doing absolutely nothing day in and day out. She also doesn't want to get married, or have kids, so there is that. But the day when her bf and his family get tired of her, she's going to be in for a shock. My issue with millennials is that the have no form of drive to do anything. They're just happy living off of other people for as long as they can, and then move on to someone else to live off of for as they can there, too. Rinse and repeat. BC.
 
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I'm not sure I'd apply that label to all millennials. I have three if my 16 year old (tomorrow, yikes!) counts. My 22 year old step son is a slow starter. But his mom and I expect him to pay his way through school since he blew two semesters worth of her paying his tuition. His sister, 20 is a go-getter. Honor roll student, currently studying in Argentina for a semester. My daughter, 16, is in three honors classes, straight A student, does odd jobs and will be applying for jobs now that she can legally drive. I can see the boy seen as a typical millennial, and I sometimes have a hard time with it because at 22 I had two degrees and was a newly minted 2LT in the Army and soon to be in charge of a 70+ soldier Signal Platoon. So his slower start is hard for this admittedly type A control freak to accept. But he's a good kid. I don't have to worry about him partying too hard or many other worries parents have concerning their kids. But there is no way our adult children or their "significant others" would live in our house and not be working or going to school, etc.
 
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Originally Posted By: Bladecutter
I don't see anything alarming about "Millennials" living in city environments, and not owning cars, combined with most of them being young enough that they don't earn very much money. News Flash: Young people almost ALWAYS have preferred living in Urban environments. They way they get to meet more young people. You're not going to meet very many young people living out in the sticks of South Dakota, or the hills of North Carolina. If you live in the sticks, you need a car to get around. If you live in an urban city, usually anything that you need is close enough to walk or take Public Transportation to. If you work in a city, and are young, chances are you're working a lower end job, like retail, and not making much money. Can't really afford that new BMW 328 on a JC Penney stocker/clerk salary. Heck, probably can't even afford a 10 year old used one. When these kids get older, marry, and have kids, they will earn more money, and move to places where raising a family will require vehicles. Then they will be sort of like us, but not quite. But, first, you have to get them to want to work, and make money. My wife's 22 year old isn't in school, doesn't have a job, and lives in the basement of her bf's parent's house. She doesn't want to go to school, she doesn't want to drive to an area where she can get any type of job, but is perfectly content doing absolutely nothing day in and day out. She also doesn't want to get married, or have kids, so there is that. But the day when her bf and his family get tired of her, she's going to be in for a shock. My issue with millennials is that the have no form of drive to do anything. They're just happy living off of other people for as long as they can, and then move on to someone else to live off of for as they can there, too. Rinse and repeat. BC.
I know a few people like that who are my age (25). It would drive me up the wall. I feel useless if I take a week off from work.
 
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javacontour, Since your 22 year old step son is out of your home and has a job...... he can make his own decisions about his future.
 
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Originally Posted By: supton
Nothing wrong with that. Would be odd if you were making payments, but, if moving&walking actually saved money as compared to now, then why not? A vehicle *can* be an investment that *ought* to last decades (road salt notwithstanding).
As far as money, it'll cost me about the same. The apartment closer to work will be about $80 more a month after everything is paid for. Which is what I'd be saving in gas. But , there's also ~120 miles a week I would not be putting on the vehicle a week. Also - grocery stores, fitness center ... everything is in walking distance.
 
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Originally Posted By: Miller88
Originally Posted By: supton
Nothing wrong with that. Would be odd if you were making payments, but, if moving&walking actually saved money as compared to now, then why not? A vehicle *can* be an investment that *ought* to last decades (road salt notwithstanding).
As far as money, it'll cost me about the same. The apartment closer to work will be about $80 more a month after everything is paid for. Which is what I'd be saving in gas. But , there's also ~120 miles a week I would not be putting on the vehicle a week. Also - grocery stores, fitness center ... everything is in walking distance.
Sounds good! I'd do some math on what keeping the Focus is costing you though. Between registration and insurance and depreciation, I suspect its atleast $2k/year? Get some half quiet tires for the Jeep for the odd long trip and your set with one car. The only issue we seem to have here with walkable living is the petty crime in that area. The ne'er do wells only walk too so they are concentrated there and most of my walking friends have had their cars and garages broken into, or even their house.
 
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Jun 26, 2003
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Where did I say he was out of the home. He's in the home. The requirements for living at home is he's in school and has a job. Not mine, his mom's. I'm not dictating what he does. Perhaps I wasn't clear.
Originally Posted By: LT4 Vette
javacontour, Since your 22 year old step son is out of your home and has a job...... he can make his own decisions about his future.
 
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Originally Posted By: LT4 Vette
BC, Why don't you have a 'fatherly talk' with her and explain she is ruining her life being a lazy piece of [censored] ?
Well, I would if I could. First issue is that she's my wife's daughter, so I'm not about to overstep my boundaries when it's not asked of me to do so, by the wife. Second, from my experiences with her over the past 7+ years, there is nothing at all that sticks with this young one, when you talk to her. In one ear, out the other, and nothing has an effect. Third, she's a good kid, overall, but at some point in time, they just have to learn that their actions, will one day, have ramifications. This also includes inaction. She lives in an area (Fort Collins) where even basic entry level jobs (retail, fast food, movie theaters, etc) are swallowed up quickly by cheap college student labor when school is in session. Yet, she refuses to get in her car, and drive the 30 to 40 miles from where she lives to our area (Longmont/Thornton) where there are constant notices from the local stores that they need workers. Yeah, 40 miles is a long way to drive for an entry level job, but her constant complaint is that there aren't any available jobs up there, yet she won't go to where the jobs are. My wife and I have even discussed it between ourselves that if she ever got around to getting a job that she needed a better car for reliability and fuel economy, we would hook her up with something better than her '93 Corolla with 190k miles, and 2 wheels in the junkyard. Unfortunately, not even a free new car can motivate her. In her mind, if she doesn't need to drive her current car, then she doesn't need to pay for gas or oil, so why would she want anything else? There's not much to say to someone who won't listen. BC.
 
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^^^Sad but true. My eldest is a special case, too, but at least she has finally become self sufficient. Your chances to change her are nil, as someone missed that opportunity LONG ago...
 
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DECENT used cars IMHO are overpriced currently since the car recession. Couple that to relatively steep fuel prices compared to what I paid 20 years ago relative to income in my twenties and I would give up too and fast!
 
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Originally Posted By: IndyIan
Originally Posted By: Miller88
Originally Posted By: supton
Nothing wrong with that. Would be odd if you were making payments, but, if moving&walking actually saved money as compared to now, then why not? A vehicle *can* be an investment that *ought* to last decades (road salt notwithstanding).
As far as money, it'll cost me about the same. The apartment closer to work will be about $80 more a month after everything is paid for. Which is what I'd be saving in gas. But , there's also ~120 miles a week I would not be putting on the vehicle a week. Also - grocery stores, fitness center ... everything is in walking distance.
Sounds good! I'd do some math on what keeping the Focus is costing you though. Between registration and insurance and depreciation, I suspect its atleast $2k/year? Get some half quiet tires for the Jeep for the odd long trip and your set with one car. The only issue we seem to have here with walkable living is the petty crime in that area. The ne'er do wells only walk too so they are concentrated there and most of my walking friends have had their cars and garages broken into, or even their house.
That's only going to be for a year or two and I'll likely move farther away from work out of the city. The jeep would be the one to go frown
 
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I know of a few people my age who are giving up their cars, and its certainly not for financial reasons. One moved to NYC and its a PITA, so he just rents them as needed. Another moved back to New Haven and sold his late model Volvo, because it was just sitting. Cars are a PITA. I'm moving downtown next month and plan to not drive on the weekends unless I'm going somewhere.
 
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