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Old 08-24-2008, 10:25 AM   #21
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So, you will not be paying these unusually high taxes routinely. Good.

If I understand your budget correctly, your "after tax" budget other than rent would be just $26,400/year or $2200/mo. That does not seem excessive to me, especially considering your location.
Maybe I made an error when I wrote this. It costs me a few hundred less than $40,000 per year, or $3300 per month.

On the health insurance cost, don't forget I have Medicare, so better than no Medicare but still a long way from low.

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If you owned your own home outright, your expenses would decrease considerably. You could buy a small house outright that didn't have condo or HOA fees. Then your housing expenses would be little more than property tax and insurance.
True enough I suppose, but I don't know where they might exist in the city. What would exist would be far out- the land is too valuable to not wreck these houses and build townhomes or condos anywhere close in. And they would be old, and they would still be expensive, and one would have to be very careful about neighborhood.

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Given that everything is close by, if I were in your shoes and wanted to tighten my budget, I would cut back on the $200/mo car expenses, though cutting back on insurance is not usually a good idea - - maybe you can use less gas (?) Or do you really need a car? Maybe a bicycle and an occasional cab ride would cost less in what I envision as your downtown location with everything nearby.
I perhaps would not need a car, but I would lose a lot or have to be bugging others to borrow theirs, or give me a ride. I think my car expenses are pretty low- last year I only drove 8000 miles!

I have a hard time finding the almost-free lifestyle that a few board members do find. I am sure it is out there somewhere though, if I just keep looking.

Ha
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Old 08-24-2008, 10:38 AM   #22
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I have a hard time finding the almost-free lifestyle that a few board members do find. I am sure it is out there somewhere though, if I just keep looking.

Ha
you may find it but I'm pretty sure you would not like the location .
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Old 08-24-2008, 10:40 AM   #23
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I have a hard time finding the almost-free lifestyle that a few board members do find. I am sure it is out there somewhere though, if I just keep looking.

Ha
Munis, sleeping bag under a bridge, local soup line. There you have it.
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Old 08-24-2008, 10:46 AM   #24
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I expect these expenses will be a whole lot less than that in ER due to the lower housing costs in my planned ER location. But in ER, I want to hire someone to do ALL the yardwork, not just the mowing. Maybe a landscaping company will do that. So, I might end up spending quite a bit on that.

Looking at things this way, owning a house is not as cheap as it might seem.
As I get older, there is less stuff I can do myself.

Another housing expense is that after 10, 20, 30 years, stuff wears out. I've lived here for 30 years this month, and the house was ~30 years old when I bought it.

Have replaced: windows, doors, wiring, outgoing plumbing, all appliances, roof, siding, patio cover, boiler, sump pump...; if I stay much longer will have to replace incoming plumbing, sewer connector, entire heating system, internal gas lines...

After the cat dies I'm moving to a small apartment.
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Old 08-24-2008, 10:55 AM   #25
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After the cat dies I'm moving to a small apartment.
We had two 14 yr old cats when we moved from a large house to a much smaller apartment. The cats were outdoor cats and we did worry about how they would adapt, but they seemed to love being inside and never wanted out.

They both died when they were age 16 (within months of one another). Now we are house AND cat free.
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Old 08-24-2008, 03:18 PM   #26
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Categories are a bit different, but here's 2007 rounded to the nearest percent:

23% Insurance premiums of ALL types.
13% Utilities - Including garbage pickup, cell phones.
12% House - Maint. & repair. High in 2007 due to foundation repair (don't move to Texas).
11% Food - All things from a grocery store, incl. paper products, cleaning supplies, OTC meds, etc.
11% Other - Various & sundry incl. gifts, travel exp. other than gas, etc.
10% Real Estate Tax - Don't move to Texas.
6% Fed. Inc. Tax - Did some Roth conversion.
4% Health Costs - Dr. & Dentist costs, a smidge of prescription med.
4% Cars - Licensing, inspection & em. testing, parts and maint. & repair.
3% - Gasoline
2% Clothes
1% Cash Expenses - Little stuff that probably belongs in other categories but too lazy to force it as long as the total amount remains low. Minimizing use of cash really helps to get ahold of expenses, tracking-wise.

2008 is a year of change, youngest is now on their own, so In$urance Premiums will come down, Car$ will come down some too.

College and college living expenses were not included in the above, they were handled "Off Budget" so as not to skew the whole picture (got that idea from the Federal Government )
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