Asset Review: Good Year for Cars

Time for our half-year asset review:

Compared to June 2010 the KBB value on the 2003 Honda-CRV rose from $11,200 to $11,555.  The 2007 Mazda 3 value went up from $13,520 to $13,990 with a total value increase of $825.  This hardly offsets what our house did to our net worth but that’s another story.

Oddly, both vehicles appreciated in value despite adding miles and age.  I have two ideas why:

  1. Gas prices are higher than last year so vehicles which get decent mileage are in high demand.
  2. The value of the dollar has actually decreased.

I’m not an economist so I don’t know, but regardless, the last 12 months have been a good year to hold assets in vehicles and not dollars.  Anyway, now for the fun stuff:

Note: My asset review fiscal year starts in May or June (I roll the year whenever I feel like reviewing and realizing the assets so some years can be shorter than others).  The Year 2008 refers to June-2008 through May 2009, The Year 2009 refers to June 2009-May-2010 and so on.

2007 Mazda3 Costs

2007 Mazda3 cost of ownership (May 23, 2007 to June 15, 2011)

(bought new)

Asset Review Year 2008 2009 2010 2011 Total Mean
Fuel 1973 1087 815 784 4659 1164
Insurance 1670 847 644 896 4057 1014
Depreciation 275 970 1625 (470) 2400 600
Service 379 1347 185 1386 3297 824
Interest Expense 727 691 347 68 1833 458
New car tax 1274 nil nil nil 1274 318
DMV Registration 362 171 217 199 949 237
Accessories 121 nil nil nil 121 30
Documentation Fee 55 nil nil nil 55 13
Jury Duty parking ticket 14 nil nil nil 14 3
Total Costs 6851 5127 3833 2363 18174 4543
Miles Driven 18619 10090 7831 6960 43500 10875
Cost per mile 0.37 0.51 0.49 0.34 0.43 0.43
I sold the Mazda3 since we don’t need two cars now that I walk to work, and if we did we would rather have an AWD anyway.  I’ve closed the books on it.  Total cost of ownership was $18174.  $378/month or $0.43/mile.  I will miss that car, but I’m happy it has a good owner (the new owner has been driving his previous car since long before I was born and finally decided it was time to replace it).

I booked the difference in KBB value and selling price to service since the tires were getting close to being needed to be replaced so that’s why the service is very high.  I probably should have booked that to depreciation, but I’m not regulated so I do accounting my way.

2003 Honda-CRV cost of ownership (June 8 2009 to June 20, 2011)

(bought used)
Starting miles: 77810
Ending miles: 90669
Asset Review Year 2010 2011 Total Mean


426 2106 1053


932 1720 860


896 1540 770


(355) 250 125
DMV Registration


0 490 245
Total Costs
4207 1899 6106 3053
Miles Driven


7169 12859 6430
Cost per mile
0.74 0.26 0.47 0.47
So glad we got out of California just in time to not have to pay the DMV registration again.  The $490 last year was because the DMV didn’t send us the invoice.  We were unable to pay online because you can’t pay without knowing a code that’s on the invoice.  We were honest and told them they needed to bill us.  The DMV apologized for not sending the invoice and being grateful for our honesty gave us a discount for our trouble was late seeing us for our appointment and slapped us with hundreds of dollars in extra fees and fines for not paying a bill that we couldn’t pay because they wouldn’t let us pay without the code that’s on the invoice that we didn’t get; then made us go smog the vehicle but wouldn’t extend a temporary registration for more than two days even though it was a three day weekend and all the smog shops were closed.

Insurance is allocated 50% to each car.

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