How can I justify a Ferrari to my wife.

Discussion in 'Ferrari Discussion (not model specific)' started by Simon99, Jan 4, 2021.

  1. Simon99

    Simon99 Rookie
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    Jan 4, 2021
    Melbourne, Australia
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    My friend is the forum member Carl888. He is keeping his 308GTB (pictured) for a while downstairs in my garage. I have to walk past it every day. I thought after a while, the attraction would wear off. Sadly, the opposite is happening. I can't bear it any more.

    I have the means to own a 328. The challenge is my dear wife. She is thrifty. Doesn't spend money unnecessarily. Doesn't engage in indulgences. She is all about family. She is incredible. As much as I try to lower the bar, she keeps me honest. Mostly. She does spend a bit of time shaking her head walking away muttering "Low Expectations."

    I have made a few purchases in my life where she hasn't exactly approved, but run with it. It's the old saying, "It is easier to be forgiven than to get permission." However, she has fired a shot over the bow at some things. For example, I have played over the years with the idea of owning a plane. I am a pilot. And I have flown my wife many places, which has been a priviledge. But I have always rented a plane. When I suggested buying a plane, she said "Sure, but not with me." Now she does has a sense of humour, but was giving me the thousand yard stare with that one.

    Saying "It's not a plane" isn't going to cut it. I need justification that will cut the leather. "Investment" would be marginal. Owning one would not change our lifestyle. Still, that is not exactly the point. I need a strategy and if a reasonable one cannot be found, maybe I just have to settle for not being a Ferrari owner.

    I have a little time to sort it out. My family is stuck on the other side of the globe due to Australia locking the doors to the rest of the world. I probably have 9 months until they are back...
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  3. PB033

    PB033 Rookie

    Dec 13, 2019
    I like your story, because it may be similar to what many of us had to go through, when buying a Ferrari. My strategy was the following: I told my wife that I'm looking for a 488 Pista, which I knew, she would never agree to. We went to see one in the showroom and next to it, they had a 458 Italia. She was obviously shocked by the price of a Pista, but when I mentioned the 458, she was a bit relieved that it was not going to be a Pista and after a test drive she even liked the 458. That's how I bought the 458 and still have a happy wife =)

    Sent from my BBF100-6 using mobile app
  4. greyboxer

    greyboxer F1 World Champ

    Dec 8, 2004
    South East
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    How about: I needed a distraction until you got back and this was the least threatening to our relationship and cheaper than a plane and yes of course I'll sell it when we're reunited if you decide you don't like it

    Or persuade Carl to let you have a go every now and then in return for the storage
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  5. Steveinfl

    Steveinfl Karting
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    May 14, 2016
    Chicago, IL and Hilton Head, SC
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    Steven Clayton
    Way too many people look at buying a car as an expense. Which, of course, it is. BUT - also...of course...not the whole amount.

    Meaning - you buy a new Porsche for 100k and then sell it, 3 years later for 60k - you didn't spend the 100, you spent 40.

    With a car like a 328 (which I had a perfect condition 1987 one at one point) can buy it for $xx, drive it and sell it 3 years later for pretty much the same $. These cars aren't depreciating any any real amount anyway.

    So - the overall expense to buy a car like that, or a 348 or 355 or 360 or even (probably) a 430 is not very high at fact, it may be pretty darn close to zero.

    I would use that argument. The only downside is the opportunity cost for that money, which is probably pretty small right now unless you're a stock market wiz.
  6. Simon99

    Simon99 Rookie
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    Jan 4, 2021
    Melbourne, Australia
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    PB033, great story and a coy move. Having your wife make the buying decision is a strategy that will always win in the long term for your relationship. "They're both red. And this one's 30% less!" ;-)

    My friend Carl dropped in tonight. We discussed my predicament and he looked at my post. He said to me there really was no point in trying to justify it, because at that stage, you're admitting it makes no sense.

    I then looked back at some things I've held back on doing until later for practical reasons, not giving credit to the joy I've had from the experience. And with that I wondered whether people who hesitated and bought their first Ferrari in their 60's looked back and wished they had done it ten years earlier.
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  8. RDHNoVA

    RDHNoVA Rookie

    Jan 3, 2021
    Northern Virginia
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    Ryan Hill
    Wow, I read your post and it was as if I wrote it...I am in the exact same situation. The way I explained it to my wife was that rather than put down cash for the car, I have been investing that cash in relatively consistent ETFs (avg. 7-9% annual return, but much more the last couple years). So, "We are not paying for the car, our investments are!...I can pay the car note with the gains and never touch our money. It's basically a free car". Now, I know that is stretching the truth a little, but as soon as I mentioned getting something for free (or heavily discounted) her thrifty little eyes lit up, and she was almost excited by the idea.

    Good luck!

    Sent from my Pixel 4 XL using Tapatalk
  9. Simon99

    Simon99 Rookie
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    Jan 4, 2021
    Melbourne, Australia
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    That is a practical idea in theory, but I would find it a bit awkward. He is a long time friend and his cars are in exceptional condition. If it was a mid 90's M series, that would be a bit different.

    Yes, not buying it at all would solve my problem!
  10. Simon99

    Simon99 Rookie
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    Jan 4, 2021
    Melbourne, Australia
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    I saw this argument somewhere else and from a numbers point of view it made the most sense. In Australia, a 328 is, say, AUD$200k. Let's say the opportunity cost of that amount, plus ownership costs, is $20k per year. That is how you could present it fairly. Your indulgence is $20k per year. And perhaps the right thing to do is to have your wife share in that indulgence. If I am going to treat myself, perhaps I should do the same for her.
  11. Simon99

    Simon99 Rookie
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    Jan 4, 2021
    Melbourne, Australia
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    The more I see the car down there, the more I think of it as a piece of artwork than a car. Looking at it gives you pleasure. I don't even feel the need to drive it.
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  13. GrigioGuy

    GrigioGuy Splenda Daddy
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    Nov 26, 2001
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    Chris P. Bakon
  14. Innovativethinker

    Innovativethinker F1 Veteran
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    Aug 8, 2009
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    Mark Jones
    Tell her you’d give up your girlfriend if you got the car?

    Just trying to be helpful...
  15. Dane

    Dane Formula 3
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    Apr 25, 2002
    Manhattan, MT
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    Tell her the truth. A Ferrari is an investment.

    Show her the increase in 308 values in the last 15-20 years. I bought my first, an exceptional 1977 308 GTB with 23k miles for $25,000 in 2002...

    You are investing in “our” future, and admit to her, “I have one life to experience this. I want to share it with you before it is too late.”
  16. Twosherpaz

    Twosherpaz Formula Junior
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    Feb 25, 2014
    Thermal, CA
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    If the only priority she has is passing the maximum amount of wealth to the next generation, then I do not see how this is overcome. But I would suggest reanalyzing priorities as a couple. Are we really saying, regardless of age, in the wake of a global pandemic, regardless of health and longevity, that we are never going to allow ourselves any indulgences? Perhaps the answer is yes. It’s not necessarily the wrong answer, but it helps define the parameters within which you have chosen to live.
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  17. spirot

    spirot F1 World Champ
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    Dec 12, 2005
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    Tom Spiro
    While I like all the "investment" ideas - fundamentally someone like your wife is not going to see that ... they will always be able to say if we invested $50K in x fund it will grow by average of X and you don't have to insure - fix or maintain an investment.

    My Advice is to be uber honest. I want to buy a Ferrari. I know you disagree, but this is something that I need to do. I want your support. I know you don't like it, and you think it frivolous. However I'm going to be as prudent as possible and I expect that it will cost $x and likely be $X amount a year for maintenance. You will need to refute all the concerns about the money, showing that in actuality you can afford the car. ( if that is truly the issue ) Be honest and say that I have been thinking about this for a long time, and use COVID as the catalyst - life is short - i want this experience.

    I owned a Ferrari when I got married, and I was 100% up front about the car - it was a non negotiable that i was going to have one, and no matter how many kids - i was going to keep the Car. I indicated that this may seem selfish, and short sighted but that was me, and what my expectation of life was.

    22 years later - 3 Ferraris later she still does not quite get it all, but most of our friends that we circulate with are from the Ferrari Club of America - and she has met a lot of her current girl friends from the Ferrari world... Using that form of psychology - up front, honest, and sincere should work - it may not always be pleasant but you are giving her notice that this is what you need to do. Be prepared for her to say well I want X.... that is when you know you have won.. .just have to negotiate her side From there.

    acknowledge its emotional vs. logical. there is nothing about Ferrari's that are logical - ever. if you put it on the table first you get to control how it works.
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  18. BT

    BT F1 World Champ
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    Mar 21, 2005
    FL / GA
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    Bill Tracy
    Best strategy is to use female thinking on your side. Don't rationalize anything, just keep harping on your feelings, and how it is hurtful that she would deny the thing that you feel is needed to make you a complete person, or something like that. 'Just because I am a man doesn't mean that I don't have feelings too.' 'It is no fun crying to myself at night while you are on the other side of the world, and having this item would make the lonely nights less painful.'
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  19. VAF84

    VAF84 Formula 3
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    I was proactive on my end. Before we got married, I was clear (in a tactful way) about the fact that my work was mobile (lots of moving) and that I would be owning a Ferrari at some point, and they were non-negotiable. Four years later I bought the F430 with my wife's support, and currently showing her pics of and getting her feedback on 458's to get her warmed up to the idea of an upgrade :D.

    I think @spirot has the best recommendation so far. It's not a need it's a want, so you have to justify the want. Present the financial case, and how it won't affect your finances too much (assuming it doesn't). Definitely bring up age/timing. Also a plus is that FCA seems to do a good job of incorporating the spouses in activities. My wife has really enjoyed being able to participate in those events. It really does build support for the hobby.

    On age/timing; I'm fairly fiscally conservative with my money. I deliberated a long time deciding whether it was time (I'm still pretty young). My mentor who is a fair amount older than me, and was getting rid of the last sports car (458) he would ever own (according to him), told me that if I could afford it without too much financial stress; do it now. Just based on the pure fact that you'll be equipped to enjoy the car with better vision, motor skills, getting in and out, etc. than you would later in life. In other words, likely to get more enjoyment out of the car.

    Good luck!
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  20. Shark01

    Shark01 F1 Rookie

    Jun 25, 2005
    Throwing the wife under the bus.....LOL....make damn sure she doesn't see this.

    So I'm the thrifty one in the family so for a long time I drove non-exotics. I could never justify to myself spending family income on a what I did was develop a concept in my head called "free money". Anything that was over and above my regular income was considered free money. I took multiple side jobs, worked alot of overtime, sold vacation back to the company instead of taking Fridays off, stopped going out for lunch, anything I could do to save.

    I bought a Lamborghini after 9 years of savings and this year a Ford GT after 6 years. And Free Money in each case ended up as 75% of the purchase, so I didn't feel any guilt at all. All family needs were taken care of on schedule.
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  21. bernieb

    bernieb Karting

    Apr 16, 2007
    Alberta Canada
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    Bernard J Bonertz
    This may depend on your stage of life...if she threatens to walk because you want a toy that you can reasonably afford I would call her bluff. If you are under 50 there's lots of time to find a new wife with a different attitude toward money. Also plenty of time to recover financially post divorce. If you are older and she has been "Driving The Car" for 40 years and you've let that occur thus far: Yer Skrewd! Your nuts are in her purse. Having said that
    the first divorce is always the most traumatic and expensive...subsequent divorces are easier all around. Ditto on Ferrari purchases it's a lot easier to pull the trigger on Ferrari #2 or #3. Your current wife, whom you surely love dearly, could at any time dismiss you and you'd be like a million other guys saying, "Gee, I never saw that coming." anyway. Be in the Drivers Seat, just buy the car. That way the ball is in her court and she's the one with a decision to make. Most likely she'll decide it's cheaper to keep you, and then forgive you. (Since she seems financially astute she will understand what the bottom of a depreciation curve means). She might even gain a little respect for you since you have courageously stepped away from the bounds of her training program, (OK, that is likely wishful thinking LOL). YOLO! Disclaimer: This is definitely NOT professional advice, just too much time on my idle hands in frozen Alberta Canada. My 308, tr, and 360 are resting comfortably in their beds. Happy New Year to all! P.S. I'm 65 and BTDT.
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  22. Stevenb

    Stevenb F1 Rookie

    Aug 5, 2012
    Los Angeles
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    Not sure why this is a big deal? If you want to buy something then go and buy it. Never crossed my mind to ask my wife for permission on any of my purchases. She doesn’t ask for permission either
  23. willrace

    willrace Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Oct 21, 2006
    North Tay-has
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    Start looking at airplanes again. And boats.
    A 328 will suddenly appear "cheap".
  24. m5shiv

    m5shiv Formula 3

    Feb 25, 2013
    SF Bay Area
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    Just buy it. There's only one life. Live it and don't let anyone stop you. The implementation details are up to you.
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  25. willrace

    willrace Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Oct 21, 2006
    North Tay-has
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    Yep - At what point do you start using it for the "somedays" that you were building the pile for?
    My Dad focused so much on building the $$$ pile that by the time my Mom got him to do something other than obsess over building it, he barely had a couple of years of health to do ANY of the long list of experiences/rewards that he had denied them. He effectively made sure that they were "miserably rich", for decades.
    After that brief period of enjoying life, he spent his last years unable to do much of anything - especially the things he enjoyed.... and NONE of the remaining "someday" plans.
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  26. ChadR

    ChadR Karting

    Jun 19, 2019
    Central Florida
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    Tajil Black
    Buy it and tell her that it's your friends other car. Don't park it at home
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  27. yoda

    yoda Formula 3

    Sep 27, 2004
    I've witnessed the same among family and friends. Years of being frugal only to have health issues creep in post retirement putting a damper on the fun things and experiences that were planned.
  28. ginoBBi512

    ginoBBi512 Formula Junior
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    Oct 9, 2016
    Tell her you will file for divorce , buy the Ferrari , and see what happens lol

    Thank you
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