From Two Cars to One: Can it be Done?

How many cars do you own?

Statistically speaking, the answer is likely two. Patrick and I owned two. Until recently.


Listen, I’m not saying we’ll never buy another car. But when a transmission goes out, and then it goes out again (after you paid to have it repaired), one car starts looking a lot more attractive than two.

For many people, two cars are necessary. If you’re married, or living with roommates, chances are the people you live with work on opposite sides of town. Carpooling, as we once knew it, is all but dead.

But for Patrick and me, life with two cars isn’t a necessity anymore—it is a luxury. Oftentimes, I use “my” car to run to the store, while Patrick stays at home to work. Then, in the afternoon, Patrick takes “his” car to the office, while I lock myself in my home office to write. We have two cars, but more often than not, we only need one. One sits in the driveway while the other is out on the road. Then vice versa.

So, when one of our cars went kaput this week (his)—we didn’t exactly freak out.

In fact, the first thing out of my mouth wasn’t “let’s start shopping for cars.” It was actually something I never would have imagined I would ever say. Ever.

“Maybe you should have my car, and I should get a bike.”



I haven’t bought a bike yet. (The one pictured above is my friend, Taylor’s. Isn’t it pretty?) Patrick’s car is still in the shop. We’re still deciding what to do with it once it’s fixed. (And it will get fixed because that shiz is under warranty.)

But can we do it? How do you move from luxury to necessity? 

I think it will mean saying “no” more often. Already, I’ve had to backpedal (no pun intended) with a friend who invited me to hang out today. I forgot—Patrick took the car this afternoon.  It will mean communicating more clearly.  After all, no more “quick” runs to Target that Patrick won’t know about until the end of the month, right? Right.

I think it will also mean buying a bicycle.

What do you think? Is it feasible? Do you live with one car or two? How do you do it?

And what kind of bike should I get?


Author: Claire

Hi I'm Claire. I am a freelance writer, Vizlsa lover, and avid runner who lives in Nashville, TN. Nice to meet you.

8 thoughts

  1. Without a doubt you can do it! Heck, there are FAMILIES (like, with small kids) that don’t even have ONE car and do just fine. You’ll be happier in the long run, too. People who commute by car, on average, hate their commute a lot more than cyclists. And, there are a lot of health benefits (google for infographics on the benefits of cycling/ commuting by bike)! Oh, and financial savings — in technical terms…you’ll be saving a butt load! 🙂

    Seriously–there are a lot of blogs out there for people who went car-free or are carless. They are a great resource and can share plenty of tips to help you get started.

    Besides, when you look at the big picture, it’s LESS of a hassle to get around by bike (really, truly!). Someone earlier mentioned you live in Nashville? I was just there and it seemed relatively bikeable. You even have a bike share program there!

    I agree that your partner should get a bike, too, so that you both can enjoy it together =)

  2. You and Patrick should both get bikes just for the enjoyment of riding together! We have been riding together for years…and what a great location you have for biking!

  3. Claire, you guys are not retired.(if you were that would work) You already have issues (internal struggles) working from home. You’re a freelancer which means you never know when and where you will need to plug yourself in. It’s not worth the trouble but it’s nice to think about. I believe I would get a scooter before I’d be hoofing it all over Nashville on a bicycle said the fat uncle way down here in Florida.

  4. October will mark our second year sharing one car and so far it’s worked out well. We have an advantage over most folks because we’re in our early 70’s with neither of us working any longer – yet both of us are busy with various community service efforts, Bible study groups and until recently were in different yoga classes. The insurance and gasoline savings is a wonderful boon to our fixed-income status. We make every effort to post our commitments on the calendar as a consideration to the other.
    Claire, there is no public transportation in our town, but that may be an option you’d want to explore.

  5. We shared a car for about 6 weeks while one was being repaired and it worked well for us! We communicated more about our plans and shared rides often. I used my bike more! I had to be more thoughtful about trips to the store, etc. We used less gas. All good things with only the occasional inconvenience!

    1. 🙂 makes perfect sense. I’d really like to get a bike, but I don’t know the first thing about where to start. Any advice?

      Sent from my iPhone

  6. I love this post! amy and I have ticked one car twice in our marriage. one time it was because we both worked in Maryland Farms so why have two cars? the other was when our car died right before our son was born. we have rocked one car since and it’s worked out great. probably time to add another car as the boy is gettin older but it’s definitely possible!

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