Finally buying a minivan: Why we chose a three-year lease

I wrote a post a few months ago about my decision to postpone a minivan purchase as part of a WalletPop series highlighting real-life signs we're in a recession. Many readers thought it was silly for a family of five to drive around in a '99 Ford Taurus for one more minute and had lots of advice on how we could get into something more suitable without blowing our budget.

I'm happy to report that we finally bit the bullet and, after weighing lots of options, recently leased a Honda Odyssey.

We've had the car for about a month. I am pleased as punch with the purchase. It's fun to drive, incredibly roomy (so the older kids can actually buckle themselves in) and we feel like we show up at events and friends' houses driving a nice set of wheels for the first time in a long while. Best of all, we are only paying $259 a month for our lease.

I have always been against leasing cars. We bought our Taurus with a three-year no interest loan plus a few thousand off from my Ford credit card. We paid $422 a month for three years and then had five years of driving pleasure with no payments.

I wanted to do the same thing again.