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Honest family economics question....

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by ScribePharisee, Sep 3, 2009.

  1. ScribePharisee

    ScribePharisee New Member

    I see the average salary (not for people in this business for 25 years perhaps, but for those in child-bearing/raising ages, late 20s through 30s who are making in the neighborhood of $25,000 regardless of where they live.

    And in some places, the housing IMO would be incredibly expensive.

    I make just under $50K and my wife makes about $30K. We have kids. We have no credit card debt (dealt with that) and we still have little to save and from the looks of our expenses, have only the basics. I'm wondering for those of you in your business with kids, making in the late 20s to early 30s range, how in the hell do you make ends meet? Maybe my budget is out of whack.

    Of course, some of you may have spouses who make shitloads of money too.

    I'd love to hear some stories. Hell in these times, journalists or not, maybe we can learn some budget management from one another.
     
  2. ScribePharisee

    ScribePharisee New Member

    If this needs to be moved, mods, please do so.
     
  3. Stitch

    Stitch Active Member

    I think budgeting is a necessity if you can't save with $80k between you and your wife. I make under $35k and am the sole breadwinner. We rent a house, but rent is really inexpensive. We are on WIC and the free lunch program, and that helps. But our cars are 12 years old and we take vacations where family lives.
     
  4. Pancamo

    Pancamo Active Member

    Write your bills on paper and see why you can't save money.

    Rent
    Cars
    Insurance
    Cable
    Phones
    Electric
    Heating Gas
    Water

    Etc.
     
  5. playthrough

    playthrough Moderator Staff Member

    Check out one of Dave Ramsey's books or his nightly show on Fox Business. He's big on budgets and making sure the expenses jibe with the income. If you can do both, while being debt-free, you can live right and put money away on virtually any decent income.
     
  6. tool_shed32

    tool_shed32 Member

    Between my wife and I we make about 60K per year. We cut the extra that most people have, drive cars that are pushing 200K miles and even quit smoking to save some bucks that way.

    We have a TIGHT budget and watch every penny we spend. Aside from the kids' sports, we do nothing along the lines of going to the movies or bowling, etc.

    A weekend getaway consists of driving 10 miles to the in-laws to swim and fire up the grill.
     
  7. HandsomeHarley

    HandsomeHarley Well-Known Member

    I make around $25K and my wife (a school teacher) makes around $35K. So we make about $60K between us.

    We have two kids, one about to turn 18 and the other special needs.

    We are currently filing for bankruptcy. A job layoff 15 years ago started the ball rolling, and medical bills piled on at an alarming rate.

    We're hoping to be able to start over. Once the eldest kid is off to college (pray to God for a soccer scholarship), we hope we can finally begin actually living and not just surviving.
     
  8. JackReacher

    JackReacher Well-Known Member

    My wife and I live in the DC suburbs, but we make more than enough, which is the first time I've been able to say that, well, just about ever.

    Still, I suck -- absolutely SUCK -- at money management. My lovely wife handles the bills and such, but you send me out by myself and I'm certain to piss her off with my spending.

    I've learned -- slowly but surely -- to limit myself on certain things. It's a lot different from when I was taking care of the bills, keeping the checkbook organized and balanced, etc. Now that I don't see it on paper, it just feels right to spend a bunch of money.

    My advice would echo that of the list someone posted above. Know what you bring in, know what goes out and spend/save accordingly. Much easier said than done, though.
     
  9. YGBFKM

    YGBFKM Guest

    When I made a lot of money, I lived on very little, so now, when I'm making very little, it hasn't been much of adjustment. Less savings, obviously, but I've always been good with budgets. Best advice I can give is to sit down and figure out how much your bills are and make sure you pay them before spending money on things you may want but don't need.
     
  10. three_bags_full

    three_bags_full Well-Known Member

    We've had to make an incredible adjustment since I was transferred. We went from over $100K to only my salary of about $40K because my wife, an accountant, can't find a job. Oh, and our house payment went from $750 to $1,200, and my salary dropped about $300/month because my housing allowance is lower here.

    So, I know how you're feeling. We're just praying we can make it until I head to Afghanistan in March and then get promoted in May/June.

    But it's as simple as paper and pencil and prioritizing your needs. Food, shelter and lights, cars, etc.

    Dave Ramsey is a great resource. You can Google his "baby steps" program. Simple and amazingly effective.
     
  11. Madhavok

    Madhavok Active Member

    I don't have a wife or kids, let along a significant other. If I did, well, I'm pretty sure I'd have to give up the life I have now and get back into the whole career path most of my high school and college counterparts are now doing.
    I get by, barely and I'm cutting a ton of stuff out of my life:no more drinking for a while. Not because of stupid mistakes or deeds, but mainly for cleansing my system for a while and saving a bit of coin. I still go out and play pool and hang, but sip on cokes or water. Eating habits have changed. Cut out the beef and switched to pork and other things.
    This will be the first year I won't be getting a hookup for companies for my winter on the side earnings and regular job. So, any money I do save is going towards that. Which freaking sucks.

    I know there's a lot of people out there who are in a rougher place in this. I am by no means trying to be 'that guy/gal'. Just some friendly tips.
     
  12. JakeandElwood

    JakeandElwood Well-Known Member

    The cost of living is very cheap here in podunk ($460 2 bedroom apartment with washer and dryer that is way too big for me) and I honestly don't really spend a lot of money. I don't drink, don't go clothes shopping unless I have to etc. The only real expense for me is eating out, and I rarely do that at a really nice place so that doesn't add up to too much.
     
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