Thursday, December 2

Vehicles and the True Cost of Ownership: How Much is My Car Really Costing Me?

As a mystery shopper I have to be aware of my costs. Depreciation is the cost of using my car in a given time period. Instead of expressing the cost of my car as a one-time expense when I bought it, I spread out the cost of my car over its expected life. Depreciation does not include other vehicle-related costs like gas, maintenance or insurance. I separate those out and report them as they occur.

I determined that each mile I drive costs me $.0867 in depreciation. I ended October with 41,669 and at the end of November there were 44,544 miles on the odometer. I drove 2,875 miles. For November, my vehicle depreciation expense was $249.26.

This is the least amount of miles I've driven in a month this year, and my mystery shopping income was still a respectable amount. I attribute that to not taking any significant trips to shop as most of my work was local in November.

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