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Old 06-20-2005, 09:15 PM   #1
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Normal Help me figure out if I can afford this....

and offer me some helpful tips for living as cheaply as possible.


Ok here's the deal. I'm freaking poor. I need to move out because living with my ex is making me crazy. Here's the deal. After taxes I make about $1200.00. I have about $400.00 in bills every month (the bills I get in the mail every month basically), not including food, gas, etc. The offers:

A room to rent in a very nice part of town on 3 acres and about a 10 mile drive to work and to school. Lowest he'll (who offered me a "Will and Grace" situation lol) go is $500.00 a month all inclusive. It's less hassle for me to work with school at this place and pretty much it's easier all around.

The other is $400.00 a month all inclusive with a mom and her teenage kid (and her other kid will be going to college for the first time). it's about 12 miles from work and 26 miles from school. It's a bigger hassle for school and I'd probably end up paying the out of district rate (which my student loans will pay for but still...less money in my pocket) but it's cheaper and makes me less worried about surviving.

Given these few details, the price of gas being upwards of $2.50 at any given moment and the fact that I can't seem to work up a budget to save my life right now, I'm asking for help figuring out if I can use what's left of my money to survive and eat and have enough money for gas, etc, etc, etc. So if this makes any sense and anyone wants to take a stab at working out a budget for me and help me remember all the details of living I'd so appreciate it. I'm stressed and I can't think anymore.
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Old 06-21-2005, 12:05 AM   #2
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i'd go for curtain #1...live with will for $500 a month.
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Old 06-21-2005, 12:23 AM   #3
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I'd go for the first option too.
Less ppl = less stress too, esp. if you are in school and working (bravo)

And honey, I am the queen of living cheaply, I'll offer some tips tommorrow when I can type more

(roomate sleeping, I must be quiet )
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Old 06-21-2005, 03:33 AM   #4
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Gawd I wish I could find some place that cheap 'round these parts
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Old 06-21-2005, 05:40 AM   #5
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Go with option 1! Option 2 sounds major stressful with kids running around.
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Old 06-21-2005, 05:42 AM   #6
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I'm in a "Will and Grace" situation myself, and my "Will" is the most laid-back, sweet, easy-to-get-along-with dude. He also has quite the social life, and consequently isn't home much.

Option #1...if you have kids of your own, you'll have them underfoot someday and treasure that, but if they're not yours, it can just be more stress.
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Old 06-21-2005, 06:40 AM   #7
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Option 1 and maybe try to take on a part- time on the weekends.
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Old 06-21-2005, 07:13 AM   #8
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option 1...it's just for a single room, right? If not...maybe find a roommate/housemate? We've crammed 5 people into our place (breaking two laws!) and it's worked wonders on our rent bills!
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Old 06-21-2005, 07:27 AM   #9
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Another Will & Grace-er here too
It's a fun and cheap way to live and it's fun to hang out and mix and match our friends
(my will & I are also best friends, so it's different than living with a stranger, but still, if you make good arrangements about privacy and practical stuff before-hand, it can work out beautifully)

Good luck!
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Old 06-21-2005, 07:36 AM   #10
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Both of them are houses and I'd be renting a room. Do you really think I can feed myself and live on only $300 a month?
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Old 06-21-2005, 07:42 AM   #11
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I generally only spend $50-$60 every 2 weeks on food (I buy a lot of supermarket brands, LOL). After my bills, I can't imagine I have much more than $300 to spend on food and miscellanea.

I drive a small car that gets about 23-25 miles to the gallon, so gas is typically at least $25 every 2 weeks.
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Old 06-21-2005, 07:46 AM   #12
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I drive a tank, which takes $40.00 to fill up and I don't have the option of getting a smaller better car at this point. I guess I've just been so spoiled not paying rent the past few months that I've forgotten how to do any of this. Oh and I've started cooking (a little) too, so I guess that could help cheapen things up a bit for me.
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Old 06-21-2005, 07:49 AM   #13
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Have you considered getting a 2nd job? Maybe that might help a bit.
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Old 06-21-2005, 07:49 AM   #14
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Oh and since I said I'd never ever ever ever ever have anything but female roommates again, does this make me a hypocrite? lol
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Old 06-21-2005, 07:51 AM   #15
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Ya gotta do what you gotta do, right?
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Old 06-21-2005, 07:54 AM   #16
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I was shocked at how quickly buying food eats up (no pun intended) your budget. After the first couple of months where I did a lot of stopping after work for things here and there, I've learned to go one one big trip once every month, which isn't such a big trip considering it's just me, lol.


I'm with the others here in saying Option 1 seems like the best bet, just for the "no kids" part of it alone.
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Old 06-21-2005, 07:57 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally posted by U2Girl1978
Have you considered getting a 2nd job? Maybe that might help a bit.
Once I start school I won't have time for a second job.
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Old 06-21-2005, 09:57 AM   #18
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OK, the best way to save money -
Buy a Sunday paper every week (if you don't already) , take out the ads, they are your friend.
Go thru the coupons and clip clip clip. Don't just get the obvious stuff, clip out a ton, clip out things you may like to try.
Do your shopping at a store that doubles coupons (there is a Ralp hs near you yes? I know there's some near Chicago somewhere....)
Get whatever Club Card the store offers, it is also your friend.
If you go to Ra lphs, they double coupons everyday of the week, and when used with the Card it is

The reason it is good to clip a lot of coupons, (after a few weeks of Sunday papers, you'll be really set) is that way you can stick closer to just buying the things on ad. When something is on special for the Card holders plus you can use coupons (which are doubled) it's amazing how much you can buy for a much smaller amount than if you paid full price.
Another reason to clip things you might not normally buy is a lot of things will at some point only cost like a buck. Esp. new items, they want ppl to try it so the stores already have it on a good sale but with your coupons too it's really cheap. And a great way to stock up on snacks and munchies.

Last week my roomate sot $300 in groceries for only $150.
I am on a super tight budget so I can't spend that much, so I usually spend about $50 on groceries when they normally would have coast around $100. Generally that will last me about a month. You'll get better the more you do it, but after the first time you'll be so happy when seeing how much money you save you won't ever go back lol

And it's good you've started cooking, that is a great idea.

Also - Are there any Dollar stores around you? In big cities they usually have fantastic ones with stuff in it you may not have expected. And a great place to buy pencils/pens/paper/notebooks for school.


It is possible for you to live on $300 a month (compared to me, you sound like a Rockafella lol)
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Old 06-21-2005, 08:10 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally posted by Sparkysgrrrl
Also - Are there any Dollar stores around you? In big cities they usually have fantastic ones with stuff in it you may not have expected. And a great place to buy pencils/pens/paper/notebooks for school.
I the 99 cents store!





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Old 06-21-2005, 08:23 PM   #20
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Originally posted by pax


I drive a small car that gets about 23-25 miles to the gallon, so gas is typically at least $25 every 2 weeks.
Holy shit!

I spend at least double that. And I have a car that's great on mileage.

You must live close to your job.
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