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Old 08-26-2018, 01:37 PM
 
74 posts, read 58,325 times
Reputation: 52

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375 rent/water/trash
50 electric
50 car insurance
10 apt. insurance
15 laundramat
500 is this amount

Got 500 left for gas, food etc.

How I like to eat. Quinoa, white/brown rice oats. Beans/lentils. BUT I also eat canned salmon, sardines, eggs. hardly any meat cooking really. Some veggies. Some Extra Virign oil. No wheat. Frugal but healthy.

Gas? I get 27 mpg.
Where I am moving next month- Library and senior center near each other, with free wifi, plus all the free things is 5 minutes drive.
Church opposite direction 4 minutes from home
Salvation Army thrift 1 min.
Neighborhood grocer Food City 4 min

Big shopping Sams Walmart Aldi Target etc is in a group 11 minutes away.
Cant walk/bike so that will be all driving.

Will not pay for medical insurance, so dont factor that in.
Thank you for any and all responses. I really dont know how to divvy up the rest of the money, what categories.

Oh entertainment majority free, some 15 -30 minute trips to parks, love nature. Maybe 4 times a year a couple hours drive.
No cable, whatever I can get by antanea is all I need. Got a 7 dollar a month phone (Tracfone) dont know how good it will work there.


Thank you!
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Old 08-26-2018, 01:43 PM
 
11,612 posts, read 5,457,812 times
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Seems like you really have it worked out well! My only thought so far is about medical care. Here, our county would sign you up for their 'plan' due to your income, co-pays would be really tiny for any kind of Dr., med, procedure, whatever. Maybe see if where you live does that too.
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Old 08-26-2018, 01:47 PM
 
369 posts, read 150,242 times
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May I ask what is your age and health?
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Old 08-26-2018, 05:11 PM
 
74 posts, read 58,325 times
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None of the killer health risks. Blood pressure low, blood sugar low, no smoke no drink. I take good care of myself. But have very poor energy because of chronic fatigue syndrome. Mid 50's. This would be a separation from husband. This is the amount of money I will have to live on a month.

So how to I spend money? How much can I save a month?

Its not going to be a legal divorce. So not going to have any govt help based off an official income. Weve been married 30 years.
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Old 08-26-2018, 05:35 PM
 
Location: Colorado
110 posts, read 33,937 times
Reputation: 194
Can I ask what state you live in?


I would factor in-

1. dental care. Cost of dentistry unless you get some of this provided at no cost.
Save up for an electric toothbrush. They do a MUCH BETTER job at cleaning your teeth.
2.Sign up for Food Stamps if you haven't already.
I factored in all of the deductions you listed (Used $300 for rent). You'd get around $150 a mo here in California, States vary.
3. Go to the Craigslist free section or put an add on there asking for free manure and a plastic kids pool.
put in on your balcony. Go buy potato starters. These are "eyes" cut from potatoes which grow into new potatoes. There is the initial investment but afterwards, you will have endless free potatoes for life. Bring these to church potlucks.
When we were very poor, this came in VERY HANDY. Especially for church potlucks. I spent $15 at the nursery buying the potato starters, they grew into new potatoes. We'd cut out the eyes of these new potatoes, leaving about 80% to boil then eat. Tossed the eyes back into the dirt. Eventually after 2-3 years you'll have more potatoes you can deal with. Trade them for things with the neighbors.
5. Use the food stamps to buy starter vegetable plants. These are fairly easy to grow. Buy the pay dirt and seeds at wallmart or some large store that takes food stamps.
6. walk or drive behind the stores each night for 2 weeks after halloween or other large holidays.

Longs & Rite Aid tossed out all of their old halloween costumes. We had a yard sale and sold them all to kids who like to play dress up for $1 each.
There is often a ton of candy, plants which are almost dead (you can bring back to live, decorations and such in the store trashes after Xmas. We made about $40 at our yard sale in 2 hrs. This could be illegal so need to weigh this risk out.
7. Go through the newspaper bins to get their coupons. Sign up for CVS cards and other store cards under a fake name.
8. Shop grocery Outlet if possible. That is our sole shopping store aside from local health food stores.
9. Ask any mom and pop owned stores, especially health food stores, for their old vegetables "so you can feed your chickens". Cut out the eyes of the potatoes and toss in free craigslist manure to re-grow potatoes,
Cut off brusies from the vegetables and stick the remaining vegetables in a juicer. When we were poor, we did this. We juice to this day but grow much of our own food. It provided us with about 6 ounces of vegetables which really made me feel better. We had no money otherwise to buy vegetables.

10. Have a monthly game night at your house for you and your neighbors. play scrabble or whatever.
11. Wash your clothes in your tub IF you water comes free with the rent. Then hang dry them. No laundrymat needed
12. Find volunteer opportunities that assist with "gas money". So you volunteer, then on your way back, stop off and run some errands. A friend delivered meals to seniors. She'd pass various cheaper stores running in to buy the sale items at each store. It helped with socialization and at times, she was allowed to take some food home. She also volunteered for thanksgiving dinner and other events.


.

Last edited by BagelLover; 08-26-2018 at 06:01 PM..
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Old 08-26-2018, 10:52 PM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
16,721 posts, read 20,470,484 times
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I live on a very low retirement amount and have subsidized rent. I'm way below poverty level, and am basically in the same budget situation you will be in.

I will probably repeat some of what others have said, but this is how I stretch my money.

I just signed up for ATT's $10/month internet plan for people who receive SNAP (food stamps). It's good enough to stream videos and surf the internet.

Sign up for food stamps, if you can (SNAP). It's called CalFresh in CA.

Find out about free food giveaways where you live. The senior center will probably know about them. Or call 211 or go to the 211.org website. You can count on getting beans and rice and bread and usually some canned goods, if not fresh produce, and usually some meat. There are usually several different free food options you can go to.

See if you can get a discount on your electric bill for seniors/low income folk through your electric company. I get a nice discount from PG&E called CARE, I think.

Find out where you can sign up for LIHEAP - usually the senior center will know or your electric company might know - or just google LIHEAP application and your city. It's a federal program that gives you a grant each year of money paid straight to your electric company. Stands for Low Income Household Energy Assistance Program. I got around $300 this year and last year. It shows up as a credit on your electric bill.

If you have a Costco near you and you have a membership, you can get decent gas for a lot less than regular priced decent gas.

See if your library has any free online services. For instance, I am a member of two different city libraries in my area, and both of them subscribe to hoopladigital.com. I created an account with two different email addresses (one for each library) and I'm allowed 5 or 6 free downloads a month on each subscription, where I can download/stream movies, TV shows, audio books, etc. Definitely use your library for your entertainment for free.

Check out your local dollar store for bargains. I buy mushrooms in jars for $1, and lots of other stuff. I can often find the same stuff I'd find at Walmart for cheaper at the dollar store.

As far as specifically how I would budget your $500 - I budget for about 1-1/2 tanks of gas. I don't drive much. I budget for cheap wine (hard to make a bad Cabernet, in my opinion, so why spend a lot?). I try to save $100 - $200/month, which is difficult, but it seems like every couple months some expense comes up that costs a couple hundred dollars, so I need to have that buffer.

For instance, next month I need to pay for both my DMV registration and my AAA road service membership. Will cost me around $300 to pay those annual bills. It's always something.

I don't have a specific budget amount for things like toilet paper, shampoo, dog food, etc. I just shop for the cheapest options, and always ask myself if something I want is something that can wait or if I can find a better deal somewhere else, etc. I'm just really frugal with how I spend every dollar, so that if something comes up I have the money. That includes an occasional splurge, too. For instance, I'm going to a wine tasting event with friends next month. It cost $28 and I'll need to spend money on gas to get there and back, so will probably cost me around $50 total.

I'm just saying that I do splurge a little, but with thoughtful caution. It would be nice to have more money, but I'm really pretty happy. I always have lots of projects going. I love looking for interesting ways to decorate my apartment on the cheap, doing art projects, gardening on my balcony, volunteering at my library teaching ESL students - you can still be pretty happy.

Anyway, I'd budget $100 - $200 as savings out of your $500. Then, just be really frugal with the rest, so you have a little savings buffer for those here and there bills that show up, vehicle maintenance, etc., and for some splurges. I had saved up about $2200 and the transmission went out in my truck and cost - $2400 LOL. Instead of thinking - why can't I ever get ahead - you have to think like - Wow, good thing that money was there so I could fix the truck. Hence, why a savings account, even a small one, is important. I find a way to keep a vehicle running. I like my freedom.
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Old 08-26-2018, 11:20 PM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
16,721 posts, read 20,470,484 times
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Oh, and you can also get a free phone - the one people call the Obama phone. It's under the lifeline program. Under this program, you can choose between a free landline phone at your home, or a free cell phone. The cell phone I have under this program is through Assurance Wireless, which is under Virgin mobile. The phone was free and the service is free. It's not great, but hey, it's free. You can go to their website to see if they cover your area, or just google "lifeline cell phone" and your city to see which carriers in your area offer the lifeline phones.

https://www.assurancewireless.com/
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Old 08-26-2018, 11:45 PM
 
11,612 posts, read 5,457,812 times
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She has to take her husband's income into account. She is not getting a legal divorce, so her income/assets alone is not all that will be looked at.
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Old 08-27-2018, 09:12 AM
 
74 posts, read 58,325 times
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Thank you for your responses. A lot of help for a lot of people to be found in this thread and that is agood thing.

jencam is right She has to take her husband's income into account. She is not getting a legal divorce, so her income/assets alone is not all that will be looked at.

So if I can get answers more specific to my needs as to HOW to divvy up that 500 Id appreciate it. Ive never been on a budget. I am also not a wasteful person. But because I have agreed to stay under a thousand a month I gotta do it and want to do it. For sure I dont know what next year will bring. But I know being an expert budgeter will be key.

Someone train me up on that 500 straight from the gate please!
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Old 08-27-2018, 12:08 PM
 
Location: Portal to the Pacific
4,678 posts, read 4,582,667 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pnutty1 View Post
Thank you for your responses. A lot of help for a lot of people to be found in this thread and that is agood thing.

jencam is right She has to take her husband's income into account. She is not getting a legal divorce, so her income/assets alone is not all that will be looked at.

So if I can get answers more specific to my needs as to HOW to divvy up that 500 Id appreciate it. Ive never been on a budget. I am also not a wasteful person. But because I have agreed to stay under a thousand a month I gotta do it and want to do it. For sure I dont know what next year will bring. But I know being an expert budgeter will be key.

Someone train me up on that 500 straight from the gate please!
You've got $500 for a month of living outside of fixed expenses. That's $125 roughly every week.

You should be fine. We can mostly handle 4 individuals on $250 a week. Pay yourself, in cash, on the 1st, 7th or 8th (whichever one you want), 16th and 24th of each month. Prioritize groceries first than everything else comes second.

Frugal Stepping Stones is a blogger who has a few post on how to eat on $25 and $50 a week. Probably not the best for long term health, but for those weeks where costs are out of hand, it might hold you over.

Not sure what else you are hoping for.
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