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Old 12-16-2008, 08:06 AM   #201
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Final tally coming in for 2008...Note-no debt,no mortgage/car payments, health ins. covered with part time job (wife RN part time) I'm retired (age 63) as of May 2008 thus net dollars earned and spent for year will be right at 30K...for all expenses and entertainment Live in Wisconsin.. Wife will retire Jan of 2010...I will go onto
Medicare then and we will pay for her health insurance till she turns 65...Both healthy
except for my beer gut..(did I mention I live in Wisconsin) get plenty of exercise with our golf habits...
Remember, I believe prices for the things we do will be staying flat or coming down,
example- our golf membership came down for 09, and cost of condo rental in Fla.
for 09 vacation came down, gas, etc... In conclusion: 36K net for a year is very doable for us..
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Old 12-16-2008, 08:12 AM   #202
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This isn't meant to doubt your figures, but few would be able to live on $1100 a month in the style you're alluding to. No doubt one can live on that amount, but this probably means renting a room in someone's home, owning no vehicle beyond perhaps a bicycle, using library computers for internet access, access to good/easy freecycle stuff like thrift shops/etc. Nothing wrong with all this, but the $13k a year lifestyle seldom includes cars and condos. You'd have to live a pretty ascetic life style to live on $1100 a month and most people aren't up for it.

So what's missing from your budget that many would include? (but granted not necessarily a requirement for living.)

Housing costs: insurance? maintenance (even condos need carpet replaced, walls painted, appliances)?
Groceries: ever eat out? Even the local $3.25 breakfast special I like ends up being a $6 bill with tip; once a week is 1/8 of your food budget.
Transportation: 1k miles month at $2.00/gal/25 mpg is $80 for gas alone. Let's say $30 month for insurance (liability only) and $30 month for maintenance (priced tires recently?)--amoritized replacement cost even for a $3k car over five years (assuming it's junk after that) is $50 a month and that brings costs to $190 a month.
The discretionary spending is quite low, given that haircuts run around $10, the occasional gift, coffee out, gas barbecue refill, and such can eat up $75 pretty quick.

Not even mentioned:

Health insurance/dental. Even if work provides 100 pct, at retirement there will be some costs, a filling today is $100.

Unfortunately I believe most of us underestimate our true spending.
In answer to your comments:

Housing costs: Insurance is covered mostly by my condo fee. I pay 200/yr extra for personal belongings which I don't have much of. When I bought the condo this year it had brand new high quality carpeting put in that I won't change for decades and the walls were freshly painted so I won't do that either unless I want to sell. Appliances i'll pay for with my short-term savings if possible or else from my long-term cash savings but that's a once in 20+ years purchase for me.

Eating out: On average i'll eat out twice a month at $4-$6 each that's all.

Transportation: I drive between 300 and 600 miles a month that's it.

Discreationary spending: Haircuts only cost me $8(buzz cut) and I could do it myself for $0 if I wanted. I don't drink coffee or have a barbecue.

Health/dental: The $1100 paycheck I mentioned is after those deductions and in retirement my mortgage will be paid off and that cost will be replaced with health/dental ins. equaling similar overall budget.
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Old 12-16-2008, 08:29 AM   #203
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Final tally coming in for 2008...Note-no debt,no mortgage/car payments, health ins. covered with part time job (wife RN part time) I'm retired (age 63) as of May 2008 thus net dollars earned and spent for year will be right at 30K...for all expenses and entertainment Live in Wisconsin.. Wife will retire Jan of 2010...I will go onto
Medicare then and we will pay for her health insurance till she turns 65...Both healthy
except for my beer gut..(did I mention I live in Wisconsin) get plenty of exercise with our golf habits...
Remember, I believe prices for the things we do will be staying flat or coming down,
example- our golf membership came down for 09, and cost of condo rental in Fla.
for 09 vacation came down, gas, etc... In conclusion: 36K net for a year is very doable for us..
Hey, we're practically neighbors. I live 20-something miles southeast of you in Neenah. Congrats on the recent retirement!
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Old 12-16-2008, 10:44 AM   #204
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Considering I only take home $2200/mo I guess I can live on less than $3K/mo. In fact I wouldn't know how to spend that kind of money. My paychecks are ~$1100. Every other one goes into long-term savings so I only live on $1100/mo and that includes a mortgage and "fun money".

Mortgage(includes prop. taxes) - $375
Condo Fee(includes water) -$110
Electric(heat) avg. -$100
Groceries(general household items) -$200
Cell Phone/internet -$ 90
Car insurance,maint.,gas avg. -$150
Discretionary spending/
short-term savings -$ 75

TOTAL $1100/mo

This isn't scrimping too much for me because growing up this would've seemed like living in luxury.
This is interesting. I live in a small town in northeastern Iowa and can imagine how a thrifty person could live cheaply here.
Note that the OP $3,000 was for a couple. The average single male around age 30 (sorry if I'm assuming too much - I'm guessing from your screen name) spends about $2,400 per month excluding payroll tax, healthcare, and contributions - that's $1,300 more than you.

I think you've already pointed out the big savings - you beat the average by $360 on housing and $330 on car. Then you're cheaper by $170 on food, primarily by eating at home. If you don't smoke or drink you're saving $115, then another $135 on clothes (that must be in your "discretionary"), $65 if you aren't paying tuition anywhere, than another $125 on entertainment/discritionary. It all adds up, but housing and car are the places you really pull ahead.
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Old 12-16-2008, 11:15 AM   #205
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This is interesting. I live in a small town in northeastern Iowa and can imagine how a thrifty person could live cheaply here.
Note that the OP $3,000 was for a couple. The average single male around age 30 (sorry if I'm assuming too much - I'm guessing from your screen name) spends about $2,400 per month excluding payroll tax, healthcare, and contributions - that's $1,300 more than you.

I think you've already pointed out the big savings - you beat the average by $360 on housing and $330 on car. Then you're cheaper by $170 on food, primarily by eating at home. If you don't smoke or drink you're saving $115, then another $135 on clothes (that must be in your "discretionary"), $65 if you aren't paying tuition anywhere, than another $125 on entertainment/discritionary. It all adds up, but housing and car are the places you really pull ahead.
That's another thing that I can't even imagine. Who actually spends $135/mo on clothes month after month? I spent ~$20 last year on a wal-mart hooded sweatshirt and 2 pairs of boxers that was it. Next year i'll get another pair or two of boxers and some new socks that's it. I work in a factory so I don't need any fancy dress clothes. I have several $5 t-shirts, a couple pairs of jeans and I haven't paid for a pair of shoes for 10 years(Get 1 free pair a year from work). If it's nice out I just wear a plain t-shirt. If it gets colder I put on my $10 hoodie. If it gets real cold I put on my jacket that I got free from work for their 25th anniversary. Going back over my entire adult life, i'd say i've spent an average of about $5/mo on clothes not $135/mo like you say the average person spends.

Like I said before, I grew up poor so I never had anything so I don't feel deprived by having what most would consider to be very little.
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Old 12-16-2008, 11:39 AM   #206
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$3000-$3500 is what I am planning on in 2.5 years. At the most...$1500 a month for basics and then $1500 for "things". If I NEED more than that...perhaps I "need" too much. Just like the folks in the last few years who "needed" the SUV to......well.........they "needed" it.
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Old 12-16-2008, 11:44 AM   #207
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But like the other person....I do have to wonder about the $1500 a year for food. Jeez..........I like to think I don't buy WAY too much food, but $29 a week? I wouldn't eat any fruit......only potato and rice. Beer? Forget about it. I hope to get a garden going which will help...but I don't really want to go out and kill the local pets just to keep my stew reasonably filling.
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Old 12-16-2008, 12:27 PM   #208
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$1500 on food a YEAR!!!! Boy we are way off! DH and I spend about $350 a month for food. I do buy grass-fed beef from LaCense due to the ick-factor of "what's in that ground beef". I buy about 20lbs of ground steakburger and a couple of rump roasts but that lasts about 5-6 months. We only eat out about four times a year which is not included in the $350. I would love to know more about eating that cheaply because I can't even imagine spending that little.
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Old 12-16-2008, 12:42 PM   #209
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That's another thing that I can't even imagine. Who actually spends $135/mo on clothes month after month?
Not me, that's for sure.

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Originally Posted by aaronc879 View Post
I spent ~$20 last year on a wal-mart hooded sweatshirt and 2 pairs of boxers that was it. Next year i'll get another pair or two of boxers and some new socks that's it. I work in a factory so I don't need any fancy dress clothes. I have several $5 t-shirts, a couple pairs of jeans and I haven't paid for a pair of shoes for 10 years(Get 1 free pair a year from work). If it's nice out I just wear a plain t-shirt. If it gets colder I put on my $10 hoodie. If it gets real cold I put on my jacket that I got free from work for their 25th anniversary. Going back over my entire adult life, i'd say i've spent an average of about $5/mo on clothes not $135/mo like you say the average person spends.

Like I said before, I grew up poor so I never had anything so I don't feel deprived by having what most would consider to be very little.
My clothing expenditures are not as low as yours, but closer to yours than to $135/mo. And I am a scientist, expected to dress in an appropriate manner at formal meetings now and then. I just keep the number of outfits down to a minimum. The same five sets of "office casual" attire gets worn on the weekends and during the week at work most of the time. These are "mix and match" polo shirts and slacks right now. They get replaced every 3 years or so. I don't have any figures right now but I would guess that I spend about $200/year on all of my clothes (including underwear, dressy, gym clothes, shoes, etc). Most of that goes for my shoes since I am very picky about shoes.

Actually, now that I have more money I COULD spend $135/mo on clothes. I just can't imagine actually wanting to go to a clothing store and try on clothes that much, though. What a drag! Each to his/her own, but I can think of other things I would rather do with my free time.
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Old 12-16-2008, 12:56 PM   #210
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Aaron, I really hope you're proud of yourself--it doesn't sound like you ever had anything handed to you, and you have done an amazing job of supporting yourself, saving half your income, and having a condo at your age.
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Old 12-16-2008, 01:00 PM   #211
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Aaron, I really hope you're proud of yourself--it doesn't sound like you ever had anything handed to you, and you have done an amazing job of supporting yourself, saving half your income, and having a condo at your age.
Not only that, but you seem to have a lot of common sense, Aaron. I enjoy reading about your outlook on life and the world.
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Old 12-16-2008, 01:07 PM   #212
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i youtubed last night while cyberexploring gay life in thailand. please forgive the hiv stuff added to this guy's video. i'm posting this just to get an idea of what a pretty nice day might cost in thailand. bus ride, beach chair, manicure, massage and lunch for about us$22/day. so let's see, add another meal and that makes daily food & entertainment in thailand of $11k/year, assuming you get a massage every single day. add, what? $600/month rent & maybe $2500 international health insurance, pretty good living for $21k/year. yeah, i could suffer through that.

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Old 12-16-2008, 01:53 PM   #213
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Retired at the end of March 2008, so not a full year being retired, but not counting the 0% interest loan on my 2007 Honda, I will come in around $17,500 for the year. This amount includes a new fridge, washing machine, and laptop. My house is paid for, no debt (except car loan which I took only because they would not drop the price for cash and it will be paid off in a few months). With the auto loan included, the total was $25,200. I spent $3600 on food and try to eat healthy so doubt it would ever be less than that. I took a couple of interesting road trips (FL and western US), but much of my time was spent here at the lake (fishing, boating, kayaking, etc). I do plan to spend more next year for travel but $36,000 per year would normally be plenty for me. As others have mentioned, having health care covered (approx $100 per month) and no mortgage makes a lot of difference. Being single, the unknown cost for me in the future is how much "dating" will cost!
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Old 12-16-2008, 02:09 PM   #214
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Wow, this thread was started in Nov of 2004! Since we brought this thread up again, it made me think of Cuzz...wonder where he is?
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Old 12-16-2008, 07:52 PM   #215
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That's another thing that I can't even imagine. Who actually spends $135/mo on clothes month after month? I spent ~$20 last year on a wal-mart hooded sweatshirt and 2 pairs of boxers that was it. Next year i'll get another pair or two of boxers and some new socks that's it. I work in a factory so I don't need any fancy dress clothes. I have several $5 t-shirts, a couple pairs of jeans and I haven't paid for a pair of shoes for 10 years(Get 1 free pair a year from work). If it's nice out I just wear a plain t-shirt. If it gets colder I put on my $10 hoodie. If it gets real cold I put on my jacket that I got free from work for their 25th anniversary. Going back over my entire adult life, i'd say i've spent an average of about $5/mo on clothes not $135/mo like you say the average person spends.

Like I said before, I grew up poor so I never had anything so I don't feel deprived by having what most would consider to be very little.
That's amazing. I know that I spend about $300 per year on clothes, and I thought I was unusually thrifty.

The $135/mo for the "average person" is actually for a single male, age 25-34. You might enjoy the details here: ftp://ftp.bls.gov/pub/special.reques...E/malesage.TXT
It's possible that "clothing services" includes dry-cleaning and laundramat.
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Old 12-16-2008, 08:12 PM   #216
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That's amazing. I know that I spend about $300 per year on clothes, and I thought I was unusually thrifty.

The $135/mo for the "average person" is actually for a single male, age 25-34. You might enjoy the details here: ftp://ftp.bls.gov/pub/special.reques...E/malesage.TXT
It's possible that "clothing services" includes dry-cleaning and laundramat.
heheheh

I love the way the place that took the survey doesn't refer to them as people but instead calls them "consumer units."
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Old 12-16-2008, 09:35 PM   #217
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Aaron,

Quote:
Considering I only take home $2200/mo I guess I can live on less than $3K/mo. In fact I wouldn't know how to spend that kind of money. My paychecks are ~$1100. Every other one goes into long-term savings so I only live on $1100/mo and that includes a mortgage and "fun money".

Mortgage(includes prop. taxes) - $375
Condo Fee(includes water) -$110
Electric(heat) avg. -$100
Groceries(general household items) -$200
Cell Phone/internet -$ 90
Car insurance,maint.,gas avg. -$150
Discretionary spending/
short-term savings -$ 75

TOTAL $1100/mo
INTRIGUING!!!!

Tell me, what kind of food do you eat everyday? Can you give me a menu for one day?
Also what do you do for fun?

tmm
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Old 12-16-2008, 10:16 PM   #218
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Aaron,



INTRIGUING!!!!

Tell me, what kind of food do you eat everyday? Can you give me a menu for one day?
Also what do you do for fun?

tmm
On days I work I make a frozen pizza at about 2:30pm. I eat 6 pieces and put the other 2 in my lunch bag for work. At approx. 11pm I have "lunch" at work. I have my other 2 pieces of pizza along with a cup of easy mac. I also have a bag of doritos and a pack of nutty bars both of which I by in bulk at low prices. Sometimes i'll take a short snack break around 3am and have another pack of nutty bars. When I get home at 5:30am I have two packets of instant oatmeal, check my e-mail, then go to bed.
On my days off it varies a little more but I often have pizza then too. I have dinte mores beef stew and campbells chunk chicken with vegtable soup instead of easy mac and doritos. I'll often snack on cookies throughout the day. Sometimes i'll eat peanut butter out of the jar with a spoon as a snack(cheap and high protein).

As for fun, I don't do much. Surf the net, read, watch tv online. Once every couple months i'll go out to the clubs with friends. Once a month or two i'll go to movies with my brother. I usually prefer to be by myself just relaxing trying to rest to get ready for my next 12 hr shift of manual labor.
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Old 12-16-2008, 10:31 PM   #219
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aaron,

Thank you for sharing your menu!
I am guessing you are ..... in your 20's?? Your menu sounds like the kind of food I used to eat when I was in college, living in the dorm.... (No Doritos for me. I ate Wheat Thins with this cheese wiz (or something like it) that came in a spray bottle.

Where are the veggies!!?

tmm
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Old 12-16-2008, 10:46 PM   #220
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aaron,

Where are the veggies!!?

tmm
combination pizza with olives mushrooms and green peppers maybe?
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