How Much Does It Cost To Replace Car Keys?

How Much To Replace Car Keys

I used to lose my car keys fairly regularly. Even more often, I’d lock them inside the car. It was inconvenient, to say the least. But at the time, it wasn’t too expensive. Wondering how much it cost to replace car keys back in the 90’s? It was only a few dollars if I could get someone to take me to the hardware store where they could copy a spare key for me. If I had to get them to make a brand new key, rather than a copy, it was less than $100.

Replacing Lost Car Keys in the 20th Century

I gave copies of my keys to several friends and family members. That way, they could come help me out. If they weren’t available, then I’d have to get a new key made.

I do recall one awful time when I was out of town and had lost my car keys. I needed to call someone out to my car in the middle of nowhere so he could cut me a new key. It was snowing. The guy didn’t seem to know what he was doing. Therefore, the whole thing took hours.

I was sick, and cold, and frustrated. But, in the end, I got my new key and went on my way. Annoying, but simple enough. I don’t remember how much it cost to replace car keys that time but it was less than $100.

It Costs A Lot More to Replace Car Keys Today

Replacing car keys today isn’t as easy as it was back then. Take a look at your car keys and you’ll notice that they don’t look anything like the kind of key that you can just take to the hardware store and get copied. Instead, they are high-tech electronic keys. If you lose one, it could cost you several hundred dollars to replace it.

You don’t just pay to replace the key. You also have to pay for the electronic key fob. Moreover, you have to pay the dealer to reprogram the car so that it accepts the new key. Of course, all of this is designed to make your car convenient. It also makes it safer from theft. But it means that if you lose your keys, you’ll pay a pretty penny to replace them.

How Much to Replace Car Keys Depends on the Car

Back in 2013, Consumer Reports shared that the cost to replace a Toyota Prius key was about $600. That was the most expensive replacement on their list. BMW key replacement was closer to $500 while Lexus was less than $400 at the time. Meanwhile, the cost to replace a key for a 2005 Honda Accord was about $200. So, how much to replace car keys really depends a lot on the car and the type of key it uses.

Edmunds reported these average prices to replace car keys in 2019:

  • Basic transponder key: $160 (plus fob replacement adds another $75)
  • Switchblade keys: $70 (plus fob replacement adds another $75+)
  • All-in-one laser-cut keys: $150 – $250
  • Smart keys (AKA keyless entry remote): $220 – $500+ depending on vehicle

Notably, you can sometimes get a discount on replacement car keys. Work with your dealer to see if they’ll offer a lower price. Consumer Reports notes that you can get huge discounts if you buy replacement keys online. Of course, as with all shopping on the Internet, you buy at your own risk. Read that fine print before trying to save money that way. And remember that you’ll still need to get a locksmith to program the new key, which adds additional costs.

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What to Buy on Amazon Prime Day (and What to Skip)

what to buy on amazon prime day

I’ve been thinking a lot about what to buy on Amazon Prime Day. It’s a great time of year to get good deals. However, it’s also a big bonanza sale that’s very hyped up. Therefore, it’s easy to get sucked into the indulgence of consumerism. In other words, if I’m not careful, I know that I can end up wasting money on impulse buys over this two-day sale.

That’s why I want to have a plan. If I’m going to do some Amazon Prime Day shopping, then I need to focus ahead of time on what to buy. I need to make a list and some rules. I need to stick to that. If I’m focused then I’ll make the most of this consumer holiday without wasting money.

What is Amazon Prime Day?

Amazon Prime Day is a huge set of deals available on the site for a 48-hour period starting July 15th. However, there are also pre-day deals leading up to the actual sales day. All of these deals are only available to people who are Amazon Prime members.

I actually gave up my own Amazon Prime membership this year. If I want to take advantage of the deals, then I need to sign up again. They do offer a 30-day free membership. However, I’ll have to find out if that deal is available to former members. If not, then I won’t buy anything because I’m not ready to pay for a new annual membership.

What to Buy on Amazon Prime Day

If I’m able to get the Amazon Prime membership then there are only a few things that I want to buy on Amazon Prime Day.

Things I Buy Regularly on Amazon

The main thing I want to buy on Amazon Prime is the stuff that I already buy on Amazon. If I buy them anyway, then it makes sense to see if I can get a discount on them for Prime Day. In particular, I’d love to get some good deals on non-perishable items I can stock up on. Here’s my plan:

  • Go through my past orders and look for recurring purchases.
  • Check if any of those items are on sale for Amazon Prime Day.
  • If they are, purchase as many as possible (within reason) to get them at the best price.

Some of the types of things I might want to buy on Amazon Prime Day that fall into this category include groceries, home cleaning supplies, dog food, undergarments, pillows, and bath products.

After going through the old Amazon orders, I’ll also make a list of things I buy regularly such as those above. Maybe I buy them at other stores so they aren’t in my Amazon orders. I’ll check to see if I should get those during Amazon Prime deal days.

Stuff I’ve Been Wanting to Buy on Sale

There are a few things that I’ve been wanting to buy, even though I don’t purchase them regularly. I’ve been waiting for them to go on sale. Some of those things are already in my Amazon cart (“saved for later.”) Therefore, I’ll start there. Then I’ll turn to the list in my journal of “stuff I want to buy on sale.”

These are all things that I want, and I’ll use, but they aren’t necessities. For example, I’ve wanted a new swimsuit for years. I could use a new comforter for my bed. I periodically update my dog’s toy box with new items. I’d like to add to my existing art supplies.

These items are what to buy on Amazon Prime Day. The caveat is that I must already want them (not just desire them because I’m browsing the site) and they must be a good deal.

Planning Ahead for Christmas

Finally, I want to think ahead about Christmas presents. I do not purchase a lot of gifts each year. I tend to make scrapbooks and small handmade items for people. Or not do gifts at all. However, there are a few people that I like to get things for each year. Before going on the site, I’ll brainstorm a list of the types of things I might want to get for them. If I found those on sale on Amazon Prime Day, it would be worth the cost to me.

What Not to Buy on Amazon Prime Day

If something doesn’t fall into one of the above categories, then I’m 90% sure that I won’t buy it on Amazon Prime Day. It’s really important to me to be a conscious shopper. Impulse buys are a waste of money. If I’m going to waste money, I’d rather use it to support local stores. Therefore, I truly want to stick to my list.

In addition, here are some things I keep in mind about what not to buy on Amazon Prime Day:

  • Perishable items
  • Things I would never buy normally
  • Gadgets that look so fun; history says I’ll never use them
  • Clothes and shoes, because I have plenty (except for that swimsuit and underwear)
  • Big ticket items; they’re tempting because of great discounts but spending a lot of money is still spending a lot of money

If I go into it with a good plan than I should know what to buy on Amazon Prime Day and what to skip. Do you have a plan for shopping on days like this?

 

Photo credit: Mein Deal  

 

 

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Guide to Taking a Weekly Spending Sabbath

money sabbath

The Sabbath is a weekly day of rest practiced in Judaism as well as in several other religions. However, you don’t have to be religious to benefit from taking a Sabbath day each week. There are many different ways that you can adapt this practice to fit your own life. One option is to set aside one day per week as a spending Sabbath, also known as a no-spend day.

What is Sabbath?

Sabbath is a day of the week that people adhere to specific rules. In Judaism, the Sabbath runs from Friday night to Saturday night. Christian religions that celebrate Sabbath often do so on Sundays. The specifics vary between religions. The general idea, however, is to take a break from the usual way of life in order to focus on things of religious value. For example, people who observe the Sabbath may choose not to work, cook, or use electronics. If you are religious, you may use this day to honor God. If you aren’t religious, you may use the Sabbath to connect with self, family, and community.

Spending Money and the Sabbath

Jewish people who observe the Sabbath generally follow rules about money. They do not do work to earn money. Moreover, they do not engage in commerce. In other words, strictly following this religious Sabbath means that you don’t make or spend money on this day of the week. Traditionally, they may not even handle money at all. Of course, people participate in their religious practices to varying degree of strictness. Nevertheless, this tradition is a good reminder that money matters can take us away from loftier pursuits.

What is a Spending Sabbath?

Whether or not you participate in a religious Sabbath, there are many good reasons to consider implementing your own spending Sabbath. A spending Sabbath is simply a 24-hour period each week during which you don’t spend any money. If you are really strict about it, you might even set your automatic bill pay services to avoid paying out on that day of the week. However, it’s more about consciously opting to replace spending money with actions that align with your core values.

For example, on your spending Sabbath Day, you might have the urge to go out to eat with your family. However, since you’ve decided not to spend money, you have to find an alternative. Maybe everyone can figure out one thing to cook using the ingredients that you already have at home. This might meet your core values of spending time with family, avoiding food waste, and living frugally.

How to Start a Spending Sabbath

If you’re ready to give this weekly no-spend day a try, then you should start with some brainstorming. First, figure out which day of the week is likely to be most successful as your spending Sabbath day. If you know that your family is always out and about on Saturdays, shopping and whatnot, then that might not be the best day of the week to pick. On the other hand, if you find it hard not to buy things on your lunch break from work then perhaps a weekend Sabbath day is best.

Next, track your spending over several weeks. Pay attention to the types of things that you tend to buy on impulse. You will need to learn to avoid the temptation to buy those on your spending Sabbath day. Furthermore, pay attention to things that you spend money on every single day. These are the things that you might have to plan ahead for so you don’t buy them during your weekly spending Sabbath.

Next, make a list of ideas for how to spend your Sabbath. Get in touch with your core values. Align your plans and activities with those values. If you typically spend money to achieve your goals, figure out free alternatives. The more well-armed you are with ideas before you begin, the more successful your Sabbath will be.

Finally, put it all into action. Stick to it. If you spend during your Sabbath, don’t use it as an excuse to quit. Think about what caused you to spend. Re-assess, re-adjust, and recommit next week.

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