or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Natural Living › The Mindful Home › Frugality & Finances › Help convince me that I can do this...
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Help convince me that I can do this...

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Hello ladies. I am new to this area of MDC but I am a little frugal. I need your support right now. My husband works and I stay home which is great right now because we live with my parents. BUT... I can't take it any more and am feeling the need to move to our own place. So, as soon as we get taxes back, we plan on buying a washer and dryer and moving 30 min away. So, dh gets paid about $340 a week. I just need to know if anyone else is living similarly to this. Can I really live off of this? I will qualify for WIC, so that will help some. I am going to buy the tightwad gazette. We cloth diaper and breastfeed, so that helps. I am just a little scared because before we had to move here, I was still at home but only with my son and we were doing pretty rough. But I have wised up a little and am a little more thrifty. Oh, and dh won't be driving 60 miles back and forth. Is this going to be possible while maybe even putting aside $10 a week for emergencies? Thanks
post #2 of 15
It really depends on your situation. How much will your rent be? Can you call the utility companies and ask them what the average monthly bill has been in the place that you are renting? (I'm assuming you're renting.) As long as your fixed expenses aren't too much I think you'll be fine.
post #3 of 15
I agree that it really depends on what else is going on. Do you have any debt that you are still paying off. Do you have a little saved up to get started? Those were what killed us...we hardly had anything to start with so with the deposits for the apartment and the electric we were already falling behind the second month. It's all good now, but I learned my lesson!
post #4 of 15
Definitely need a little more detail on the situation, rent and bills you'd need to pay. my DH brings home $360 a week and without me working we were drawing $350 a month extra out of savings (only doing this in waiting for my maternity benefits) but our total housing costs were $790 and our car is/was costing us $780 a month (lease and insurance) which as you can tell doesn't leave us with much extra money if you don't have such huge expenses then it may be as easy (or not as easy as) as watching what you spend.
post #5 of 15
We do it comfortably, but we're lucky to have unusual circumstances that allow it. Your housing costs and other bills (like debt) will make a big difference-
post #6 of 15
My dh makes about $1600 a month in take home pay. We qualify for the CARE program through PG&E which gives us 20% off our bill, and we qualify for a low income phone bill too. Also, I bring in about $300 from babysitting every month to help cover everything. Dh works some over-time now and then too, but we've have been paying off some past debt too. You'll want to break down everything and write up a good budget, and stick to it. You also might need to change your thinking a bit. do you really need to go buy the tightwad gazette? What about checking it out from the library? Also, couldn't you look for a place that already has a washer and dryer?
post #7 of 15

I had a few questions based on your post.

Is that $340 after taxes or before?

If it is after, are you claiming correctly (you may be exempt & have an EIC coming to you, which would make a huge day to day difference). It sounds like you are getting taxes back this year--- it's best to get it back when DH earns it instead of letting the govt have your money interest free for the year.

Will you qualify for Food Stamps?

Will you qualify for Medicaid OR Healthcare through the state?

How are you doing now? (financially). Does DH drive 60 miles daily right now? And will that be cut back to what? And what is your gas milage? How will that cost compare to the cost of rent/utilities/etc...?


I would run the numbers first to see if it seems feasable. Is it possible for a family of four to live on under $18K yearly? Yes. Is it possible for YOUR family of four to live on under $18K yearly? I don't know.
post #8 of 15
Thread Starter 
Well we added it like this:
1223.73 per month - the overtime he sometimes makes by working 9 hr days nearly every weekand some saturdays isn't included in this amount.
-60.00 Insurance
-70.00 Electric This is based on what we used to pay in a much bigger city the last time we lived on our own.
-400.00 Groceries. This is being pretty generous. Plus I will qualify for WIC since I have 2 kids,2 and under and I am bfing
375.00 Rent - this is the most we are willing to pay, and I have seen ads for lots of 2 bedroom rentals for 300-325.
-$50 phone/internet bill
-40 Gas
Mike will be driving 3-5 miles a day compared to the 60+ miles that he is driving now.
We will be getting $5000 back from taxes, plus 1 1/2 of his paycheck. We have everything else we need. My parents are buying us a mattress.
post #9 of 15
You can do it! We make the same amount and our bills are similar to yours, but we also get food stamps to help. We could have more in savings if we were more frugal, but that's our weak impulse control on our part.
post #10 of 15
I agree with Tired--he's paying *way* too much in taxes if you are getting that much back. That's $400 a month you could be using for day to day expenses.

I think since you have no debt, you can do it just fine. Your expenses seem reasonable to me (although I live in a very low cost of living area and I am totally jealous of $375 a month apartments!!! You can't live in the projects here for that!) Electric has gone up a *lot* in the past 3-4 years, but if you are careful $70 a month in an apartment is doable. We have electric heat in our house and pay $130 a month, but we heat mostly with our woodstove.

One thing I didn't see--what about car insurance? We pay $90 a month for a "good driver" rate, and it's a state law that we have to carry insurance. Don't know about your state.

Good luck!
post #11 of 15
Have your DH ask to re-do his w-4, so that he can claim the correct number of allowances, giving you more money each week. IT sounds do-able to me! Will you be having to pay for any insurances? House, rent, health, ect.? Are you sure the heat estimate is accurate? Energy bills have gone WAY up this year, maybe call and check! Be sure to SAVE some each week, even if it's only $5. It'ls a great habit to start!

Good Luck!
post #12 of 15
Wow! $375 for rent is great! The only thing that I think you may need to adjust is electric. $70 seems low to me, but I don't know how big the place is or anything, so I could be wrong. Otherwise, I say go for it.
post #13 of 15
IMO You need to find out the cost of electric in the area you are moving to.

We use to have a 30-40 power bill and then we moved. A good month for us is $90-100 that’s after the part owners of our well pay us $15 a month for electric. We are using the same and maybe less as we switched all our light bulbs to the florescent ones.

We pay 8.5 cents a kilowatt hour.
post #14 of 15
I think you can do it too. We lived on that much and our rent was $600 a month and we were paying $250 towards debt. As far as the electric, see if you can get on some type of budget plan. We have a 1200 SQ house and pay $67 a month every month. We have a natural gas water heater and heat. You will just have to be mindful. On weekends pack a picnic lunch and go to a park instead of spending $$ on entertainment. Go to the library. Walk your kids in the stroller, things like that. Just keep your eye on your goal, staying home. Good Luck!
post #15 of 15
Because rent is so cheap and you will be saving a LOT on gas, I think it is totally doable.

I would go ahead and apply for food stamps if you are under the limit.

I would also look into actual heating costs and if there are any subsidies available for low income families.

And definately re-do your taxes so you're not getting that $5K all at once! $400/month will make a HUGE difference in your budget.

Good luck!
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Frugality & Finances
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Natural Living › The Mindful Home › Frugality & Finances › Help convince me that I can do this...