#StorytimeFirsts: Buying a Car

For those of you who have a bought a car, you’ll probably relate to my story. For those of you who haven’t, sit back, relax, and enjoy!

It all started that fateful day in April: the day that I accepted a job at Cedarville University.

Now, there had been many discussions about a car for me up to that point. I had a car already, sorta. The car I was driving belonged to my parents, and I got to use it throughout my last couple years of college.

Throughout my senior year, I talked to my parents on and off about a car. And all these discussions ended at pretty much the same point – see where you end up after graduation and what you’ll need, and we’ll figure it out from there.

And this was a wise move. I didn’t know where I was going to end up. For a while, I was looking at going back to Washington, D.C., but that fell through. Long story short (and not to take away from another post), I ended up accepting a job at my then soon-to-be alma mater.

Accepting that job solidified my need for a car. Living in D.C. with a lot of public transportation available is one thing without a car is one thing. But living in the middle of cornfields in Ohio without a car is another.

Graduation came and went. I was done! I was (briefly) home! And then the car-hunting began in earnest.

I knew what I could afford and what kind of car I wanted. I loved the car I was driving through college so much that I wanted to get something just like it. And we found it – pretty much the only difference was color.

But I was skeptical. It was a white car, and I didn’t like how most white cars looked. And it had red interior. I knew that would either be fabulous or terrible – no in-between.

We wanted to see it in person, so my parents and I made the trek (well, drive) up to the dealership. For all my misgivings about the color, it turns out a white car with red interior is a great combination. I loved it!

Suddenly, we went from looking at and test driving the car to buying it – and a good thing, too! Right after I finished signing a bunch of papers, we heard someone else call the dealership and ask about that car. I’m so thankful I got this particular car for a lot of reasons, but one is definitely because all the other cars the salesman was mentioning were thousands of dollars more. Yipes!

Now, if you’ve never bought a car before, you might not realize how long it takes. Or how many pieces of paper you have to sign. Or how many decisions you have to make. But everything finally got wrapped up, and I got to take my new (to me) car home!

But that’s not the end of the story. Not at all. If you’ve read some of my other stories, you know that everything is an adventure with me. And this wasn’t an exception.

I soon discovered there was this weird vibration when I put the car in reverse and still had the brake on. Odd. I also had to go back up to the dealership and take them a ton of different papers (well, maybe just four), including my college diploma.

While at the dealership, there wasn’t someone to check on the vibration, but I was told it was fine to make the journey to Ohio. And it was.

But once in Ohio, I took it to a dealership up here and found out that there was a bracket missing. Seriously.

I had a warranty on my car that was described as covering essentially everything, which sounded great! However, it turns out that the warranty only covers repairing or replacing parts that are already in the vehicle – if it’s missing one, it’s not covered under the warranty.

Cue the beginning of the circle of talking to the dealership that I bought the car from, getting it fixed here in Ohio, and figuring out how to get reimbursed from the former dealership. Oh, the drama.

Working car? Time to get it registered!

I’ve only lived in Ohio for a couple months, but I’m already way more familiar with the BMV than I wanted to be. (Also, Ohio calls it the BMV, Bureau of Motor Vehicles. I was so used to hearing the DMV, Department of Motor Vehicles, that I was so confused for a while when hearing friends in college refer to the BMV. But I digress.)

First Saturday in June? Time to get my Ohio license! Once I got my license, I was able to get back in touch with the Virginia dealership where I bought my car because they were going to process my registration, which sounded great.

Second Saturday in June. The VA dealership told me the paperwork was waiting for me at the BMV – I just had to get a physical inspection for my car done first (which I could conveniently do also at the BMV). I got the inspection done …. and then discovered the other office had already closed. Great.

Third Saturday in June. Earlier that week, I had a call from the BMV about my paperwork. Apparently, the VA dealership needed to fix some errors on the materials they sent, but everything should have been done by Saturday. Back to the BMV I went! And lo and behold, the new paperwork wasn’t there.

Fourth (and last) Saturday in June. I had been joking since my second BMV trip about what if I had to go back a fourth time. Little did I know that that would actually happen. I went back with my completed registration, stood in line again (I was getting really good, guys) and finally got my license plates! It only took going to the BMV every Saturday in June to get everything worked out.

And now, the car saga is on hold for the moment. My car is great (as far as I know), but who knows when another adventure will turn up?


One thought on “#StorytimeFirsts: Buying a Car

  1. Nancy says:

    Welcome to adulthood. Just enjoy the ride because pretty much everything is an adventure. Think how bored you’d be otherwise!

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