Spare Change buys a Car?
I once read a story about a man from Indiana who bought a new Dodge Ram pickup from spare change he saved over the course of 13 years. Is this story believable? Is it really possible to save that much spare change over the course of 13 years? Some people say it was just a marketing gimmick by Dodge in order to get publicity, but is it really possible?
Well, let’s do some math and get to the bottom of this. If it’s spare change that he’s saved in a big piggy bank at home then we won’t have to worry about interest so it should be easy math. The truck was purchased for $26,000 so it’s $2,000 per year. Break this down into days and he would have to come up with about $5.48 per day in spare change.
I realize I use a credit card to pay most of my monthly expenses so getting back change from any transaction is a rarity, but is this realistic? What kind of spending does this guy have to do to get almost $5.50 in change each day. If he’s getting back that much change is he really as thrifty as he claims?
If you think about it, it’s nearly impossible for this to happen. Best case scenario the guy gets back $0.99 for each purchase he makes in a day. That would be a minimum average of 6 transactions every day of his life for 13 years. I don’t know about you but unless it’s the weekend I rarely make more than 2 transactions in a single day. If he’s making more than 2 or 3 per day then I don’t think he’s very thrifty.
If I were a financial myth buster I would say this guy is busted! I’m not buying the story!