Thursday, August 17, 2006 :::
Assuming a full-time job, $3 gas, 26 mpg and 50 cents a mile for maintenance and no parking fees, a 50-mile roundtrip commute costs $646.15 a month, or $7,753.80 a year, according to the City of Bellevue, Wash.'s, Commute Cost Calculator.Most of that cost is the maintenance, not gas; you're looking at about a 10% increase in expense since the gas price has doubled using their numbers. That's only $200/mile in house price different from what it was when gas was cheaper, but it still might have a slight tendency to draw people toward cities and increase the gradient in housing prices until a tighter, more gas-efficient equilibrium is reached.
Moving closer to work boosts your house-buying power. Everything else being equal, a 10-mile, roundtrip commute costs just $1,550.76 yearly -- saving about $6,200 per year, or $517 monthly. That can add about $80,000 to the total amount of a mortgage loan, says one Chicago lender.
Incidentally, I understand (though I haven't checked this myself) that most of the drop in core wholesale prices reported earlier this week was due to a drop in prices of light trucks.
::: posted by dWj at 10:58 PM