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Old 01-28-2015, 09:55 PM
 
2,303 posts, read 2,246,583 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kmb501 View Post
Currently, I work part-time as a substitute teacher and bring in about 800-1200 dollars per month. My expenses are usually around 900 dollars per month. My rent is 500 dollars. My Internet and phone bill combined is around 100 dollars. My car insurance is a little under 100 dollars. The grocery bill, although it's just me, tends to run 100 dollars or more. Then, I have to pay for transportation costs (gas and maintenance on the car), which is another 100 dollars. I would really like to cut my expenses and start saving more of what I make, but right now I haven't come up with a solid plan.

Here are my ideas:

*Pick up a side job (I work a lot, but I don't bring in a lot of money.) I devote 4-6 hours per week preparing for and teaching at a community center as a volunteer. I spend another 10 hours per week at the local church. If I got a part-time job that makes at least 10 dollars per hour, I could make another 150 dollars per week if I worked these hours instead. I haven't found anything that needs me to work evenings, though, and, since I make 90 dollars per day as a sub, settling for daytime work only would put me behind. I thought about becoming a private tutor, but the market here is saturated if you don't know people.

*Get a roommate to help with half of the expenses. I just don't know if I want to share a studio with someone I don't know that well. I've put up an ad, but I haven't found anyone I like (or maybe trust).

*Cut out the cell phone and make do with a digital landline and emergency cellphone. It would cut about 30 dollars off of my bill, but that's not a lot considering I would have to give up my phone Internet plan, which can come in handy when I'm away from my computer and still need to access information. My smart phone also doubles as a navigation device.
Second job.

Both your second and third plan focus on the wrong problem. You don't need to spend less. You need to make more. It's that simple.

No one every reached a comfortable middle class status on minimum wage. While you may make more per hour, you work less hours so your pay is actually almost exactly at minimum wage rates if you were working a 40 hour week at minimum wage.

Income is your problem, not savings.
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Old 01-29-2015, 08:03 AM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
12,545 posts, read 18,371,215 times
Reputation: 3688
Quote:
Originally Posted by kmb501 View Post
Currently, I work part-time as a substitute teacher and bring in about 800-1200 dollars per month. My expenses are usually around 900 dollars per month. My rent is 500 dollars. My Internet and phone bill combined is around 100 dollars. My car insurance is a little under 100 dollars. The grocery bill, although it's just me, tends to run 100 dollars or more. Then, I have to pay for transportation costs (gas and maintenance on the car), which is another 100 dollars. I would really like to cut my expenses and start saving more of what I make, but right now I haven't come up with a solid plan.

Here are my ideas:

*Pick up a side job (I work a lot, but I don't bring in a lot of money.) I devote 4-6 hours per week preparing for and teaching at a community center as a volunteer. I spend another 10 hours per week at the local church. If I got a part-time job that makes at least 10 dollars per hour, I could make another 150 dollars per week if I worked these hours instead. I haven't found anything that needs me to work evenings, though, and, since I make 90 dollars per day as a sub, settling for daytime work only would put me behind. I thought about becoming a private tutor, but the market here is saturated if you don't know people.

*Get a roommate to help with half of the expenses. I just don't know if I want to share a studio with someone I don't know that well. I've put up an ad, but I haven't found anyone I like (or maybe trust).

*Cut out the cell phone and make do with a digital landline and emergency cellphone. It would cut about 30 dollars off of my bill, but that's not a lot considering I would have to give up my phone Internet plan, which can come in handy when I'm away from my computer and still need to access information. My smart phone also doubles as a navigation device.
You seem open to the things you would need to do. I was going to recommend taking on a roomate, but that'll be tough in a studio. It's possible though if you find someone. And it will be the biggest cut in your expenses because you'll also cut your internet bill in half. Are utilities included in rent?

Have you shopped your car insurance around for a better rate?

How far are you driving to places? Can you walk/bike instead, cutting your gas and maintenance expenses?

Your best bet for adding income is going to be a restaurant, babysitting, tutoring, or something that you could do on weekends. since you don't want it to interfere with substituting.

Of course - I'm assuming you're continously looking for a full time teaching job as well, right?
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Old 01-29-2015, 08:20 AM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
12,545 posts, read 18,371,215 times
Reputation: 3688
Quote:
Originally Posted by RecentGrad1 View Post
Internet is important. But you don't need 100Mb internet for your purposes. Get whatever is the cheapest internet plan available. Call your provider and ask them to downgrade your plan and lower your rate. If they won't, switch to a competitor.

And you have internet at home, so you most definitely don't need it on your phone. Switch to a dumb-phone if you don't already have one. Use a low-cost provider like Republic Wireless, Ting, or others.
I get what you're saying with the phone, but I would also take into considerating that a Smartphone could help an individual save money via coupon apps, gasbuddy app helping you find slightly cheaper gas, and apps that allow you to scan barcodes to check prices of items elsewhere while out shopping. I would see if the OP could utilize a smartphone to his advantage before dumping it.
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Old 01-29-2015, 09:19 AM
 
Location: 3503 Jack Northrop Ave Hawthorne, CA 90250 USA
5 posts, read 4,213 times
Reputation: 29
Getting a roommate is the best option. There are websites such as roommates.com that list people that need a roommate. First determine what you want in a roommate, what chores you are splitting up, what the monthly rent amount will cover, do they smoke or drink, etc., before posting the room available. Interview the potential roommate in a public place and compare their living preferences and daily habits to yours. I'm sure you will find a good roommate.
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Old 01-29-2015, 11:39 AM
 
4,407 posts, read 2,564,960 times
Reputation: 10240
kmb501:

Here are my suggestions:
You really need to increase income as well as reduce expenses:
1} SAVE the extra in the $1200{+} months for the lower months, you WILL need it.

2}THis day in age job hunting you need 'net and a phone. Get a pay-as-you-use cell phone {dumb one} for around $10 for connection, even if you don't use often, and use for jobs only {and call mom once a month}, you should be able to keep your current #. Look into: vonage, magi jack {$29 a YEAR} or other VOIP phone as long as you have computer USB port and 'net you are good to go-won;t be portable like cell, but.... Keep the lower 15M 'net speed only{$50/m here}

3} Rent a ROOM, preferrably with private bath and kit/laundry priviledges, utilities included, hopefully wifi too. Settle for shared bath, kit with utilities included if need be. Should cut your living to $250-$300 based on your rent of $500 for a whole studio. saves $200-250 right there.

4} GET an extra job or two, the local MCds or convenience stores are always looking for people for nights, WEEKENDS, holidays, all times when school is closed. Be willing to work all the extra hours you can. Expect no more than min wage.

5}TAKE the safe driver course... should be a few dollars {$19 for AARP course open to all ages} and about 6-8 hours of your life to take for about 15% off your car insurance premium, good for 3 years, repeat then.

6} check out {baby}sitting sites, get vetted and stress "help with homework/tutoring" as a skill. Working parents with zero time for homework help will be appreciative, set your pay appropriately, but not outlandish..may lead to other private jobs of friends and relatives of sitting site contacts...

7} get rid of car ONLY if you can "make it worK' getting around without it. BUT have backup plan/savings as it WILL break down, need parts, need maintenance and ultimately replacing. Extra job/income will help with car. Lack of sleep taking bus? go to bed earlier!

8} Voluteering is nice and you are right, may lead to extra income, but paying job is what you need now, work 20-30 hours/week P/T at second/third job{s} if you have to.

When I was young and starting out I worked 2-3 jobs all the time, even TWO full time jobs AND college full time {all at once-3.78 GPA} to "get started" in life. Well worth it to "git 'er done". Eventually the two/three jobs ended in a better single job as I gained both experience and information. Hard work and willingness to work is never looked upon badly by employers!
Good luck
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Old 01-29-2015, 12:29 PM
 
1,749 posts, read 2,157,639 times
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You cannot afford to do Volunteering work. Get another job or higher pay, save yourself first.
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Old 01-29-2015, 12:52 PM
 
3,844 posts, read 2,705,829 times
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You need to get either more sub jobs (working only 8-12 days a month out of 20 possible days??) or get any other part time job to increase your income. Are you on the lists at all the schools in your area?

I DO like that you are volunteering and getting more experience and good contacts - I think that is a valuable area that many people neglect. Let the people you're volunteering with know that you are looking for extra work as well as a good full time teaching job. I just hired one of our church volunteers (who also subs) for a part time job.

I also don't want you to give up your car - it is your freedom! I would work 3 jobs if necessary to keep a good running car. A car gives you the flexibility to work wherever you want, whenever you're needed.
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Old 01-29-2015, 01:38 PM
 
3,565 posts, read 3,130,841 times
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I also think you need more income and less volunteering. I'd pick either the church or the community center and let the other one go.

Have you thought of hiring out as a babysitter on weekends? Us moms are always looking for a good one. I have no idea what the going rate is. That would be non-taxed income that would go straight to a bank account. Does your church or the the community center have a place to post your info?

I'm also usually looking for a good pet-sitter when I can't take my dog with me. I prefer people who will take my small dog into their home. I usually pay around $25 per day. He's well behaved, potty trained, and comes with food. He needs someone who will walk him and not shut him in a cage all day. I prefer to leave the cat at home instead of a kennel. She needs someone to check on her every 1-2 days and scoop her litter box. I usually pay around $10 per day to a neighbor to do that.

House sitting is another off the books job. Most people need someone during holidays and summer vacation if you are available.
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Old 01-29-2015, 01:40 PM
 
2,512 posts, read 2,698,661 times
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You sound like you're willing to put in the work, and that's a really good thing. I would recommend a second job here. Retail, restaurant, grocery store and things like that would be ideal. Typically, places like that don't want part-time employees working over about 20 hours of so, and they'll also have 5:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. shifts which wouldn't interfere with your day job.

4 hrs a day @ $7.25 = $29 per day for one shift

1 shift per week = $29
2 shifts per week = $58
3 shifts per week = $87

The tax table for this income would fall under $1 - $9,075 yearly income, so a 10% tax rate. We'll be conservative say you're in the 15% tax bracket ($9,076-$36,900), as that's the tax rate you will be at the end of the year when including your other job.

Yearly income from side job at min wage:

1 shift per week, 52 weeks: $1508.00 - $226.12 (15% tax rate) = $1281.80 per year.
2 shifts per week, 52 weeks: $3016.00 - $452.40 (15% tax rate) = $2563.60 per year.
3 shifts per week, 52 weeks: $4524.00 - $678.60 (15% tax rate) = $3845.40 per year.

We're just ballparking here, but this is just an example of picking up an easy side job at the bare minimum wage. The more you work, the more you get paid. Heck, if you can clean one room at $100 just once a week, you're doing way better than the above scenario.
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Old 01-29-2015, 01:45 PM
 
Location: NNJ
9,353 posts, read 5,282,164 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kmb501 View Post
Okay, I work as a substitute teacher. Ninety percent of the work I get is from jobs posted online by teachers who call in sick. If I eliminate my Internet plan, I've cut myself off from being able to quickly review and pick up jobs. I also have the freedom to advertise tutoring and look for more work with a home Internet connection, as I do not usually have time to go to the library. A quick $100 dollars cleaning someone's laundry room from an ad on Craigslist can come in handy.
I'm a software developer and previously support and IT engineer. Believe me I know internet is important. I still managed just fine (while I was unemployed).... working out of a library. I even worked a short term contract job (maintaining a QA infrastructure I previously built) working remotely using public wifi.

I find that people generally greatly over exaggerate how much access to the internet they require. As someone said, you don't need it at home and phone. You don't need the fastest rate. Email? I rarely find anyone is required to check email each and every minute... and their coorespondants don't necessarily require a response within the hour. Posting ads? How often do you post and re-post. Those that do require that much access are usually on-call at a high prioriy job (system administration) and the job covers the cost of the internet bill. There is absolutely nothing you can't do on public wifi that you can do at a home inernet connection. The main difference is convenience. Maybe if you are disabled or have young kids that make it difficult to work outside of the home..... but I don't recall that being the case here.

Of course... this is your priority but in your situation, every little bit of savings does count.
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