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Old 08-25-2012, 04:56 PM
 
23 posts, read 40,409 times
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Husband interviewing for senior engineer position with Apple in Cupertino.

Looking to rent within reasonable commute of Cupertino (budgeting approx $3500 rental per month so need somewhere cheaper than Cupertino)

So taking into account rent, food, cars x 2, gas x 2, utilities and the million and one other things we need to look at. We are not a flash family at all but it would be nice to eat out once or twice a month and also to comfortably afford extra activities for kids plus extras like cinema etc.

No idea yet what package will be/healthcare/bonus/stock options etc. Really now what sure to expect.

For a family of 6 - what do you think would be the minimum we would need in order to live a fairly simple but comfortable life.
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Old 08-25-2012, 06:24 PM
 
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Well housing cost standards would dictate that your housing cost should be around 31% or your net income. So with $3500 rent you would need to earn about 145k/yr.
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Old 08-26-2012, 01:15 PM
 
Location: surrounded by reality
421 posts, read 495,414 times
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I would suggest reading the SJ board first. There are many similar questions asked and answered.

To your point, it really depends on the definition of comfortably. I would argue that no sane salary would allow you to live in Bay Area as comfortably as a software engineer's salary would anywhere else (with a couple of exceptions). Moreover, raising 4 kids is extremely expensive in the Bay Area. To avoid possible disappointment, do your research.
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Old 08-26-2012, 06:56 PM
 
Location: San Jose, CA
991 posts, read 1,653,042 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by clarity1971 View Post
Husband interviewing for senior engineer position with Apple in Cupertino.

Looking to rent within reasonable commute of Cupertino (budgeting approx $3500 rental per month so need somewhere cheaper than Cupertino)

So taking into account rent, food, cars x 2, gas x 2, utilities and the million and one other things we need to look at. We are not a flash family at all but it would be nice to eat out once or twice a month and also to comfortably afford extra activities for kids plus extras like cinema etc.

No idea yet what package will be/healthcare/bonus/stock options etc. Really now what sure to expect.

For a family of 6 - what do you think would be the minimum we would need in order to live a fairly simple but comfortable life.
I think this will largely depend on where you work, since you both will likely be commuting in that case, but with a 2 income household you should easily be able to earn over $200k/yr and that should be enough to live comfortably, even with such a large household. But if for example your job is in SF, and his in Cupertino you would probably have to live in the Peninsula to have decent commutes, but then you end up having to pay a lot of money to live there.

Were will you be working?
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Old 08-27-2012, 09:19 AM
 
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I won't be working, we will be moving from the UK with husband on O1 visa but no work permit for me.

We are not a flashy family (at all!!) and very happy to drive a couple of old cars and live a fairly simple life. Will keep doing the numbers I guess
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Old 08-27-2012, 05:34 PM
 
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around 120k+ a year
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Old 08-27-2012, 07:41 PM
 
Location: San Jose, CA
991 posts, read 1,653,042 times
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So there are a lot of things to save for in the US that you may not have to save for in other countries, while the government does give money to retirees, when you're living in an expensive area and earning more money, when it comes to retirement the government will give you proportionally less, so if your husband is earning over $100k/yr, you need to save money aside from Social Security to live comfortably when you retire. The other major expense will be for college, while there are state colleges, they still cost quite a bit of money, and with 4 children you will have to save up a lot of money to help pay for their education, you could take the attitude that it is their responsibility, but the college itself would still expect that you will pay, so if your husband is earning over $100k/yr don't expect your children to get much help in paying for college.

Having said that you don't have to assume your children will go to a college that cost $43k/yr in tuition, even if they do private colleges at that level do give out a lot of financial aid. I would say for 4 children you would probably want $50K saved up for each by the time they get to college, college here takes 4 years to complete typically, they can probably borrow the rest.

Depending on your ages your husband will want to put 10% - 15% of his income in a 401k account, Apple probably matches part of what he puts in, so you don't have to do it all yourselves.

If we assume he gets the average salary for a senior engineer in Silicon Valley, about $120K, then he puts $12k before taxes in his 401k, $1000/mo. If we assume your children on average are around 7 years old, you have on average 132 months until they turn 18, you want to save $50000 in 132 months for each, that is $380/mo for each or $1515/mo in college savings, but that is after tax.

You will be renting, so we can calculate for 4 children, married filing jointly, taxes will be about $10,700 for the year, or $892/mo

So paycheck is $10,000/mo.
$1000/mo - 401k
$1515/mo - college savings
$892/mo - income taxes
$760/mo - medicare/medicaid/social security
$3500/mo - rent
$450/mo - CA taxes
_____
$7217

$10000- $7217 = $2783/mo left over to pay for cars, food, eating out, insurance co-pays/premiums, utilities.

If we assume you buy to cheap cars that are reliable, you will probably amortize the cost to about $50/mo per car until you replace it.
$80/mo per car for insurance
$50/mo per car for maintenance

$360/mo for the cars (depreciation/insurance/maintenance)
$270/mo for gas, assuming 10K/yr in miles per car ~25mi/gallon for each car
$100/mo in utilities, a large family will probably spend that much at least.
$1000/mo in groceries, I don't think you can get it cheaper for a family of 6 in California these days.
$100/mo in internet + basic cable + phone
$70/mo for 2 cell phones on cheap plans.
$80/mo for furniture/electronics amortized, your kids will be growing and furniture will wear out eventually.
$100/mo on clothes amortized, your kids will be growing and clothes will wear out eventually.
$100/mo on insurance co-pays (unless you can get some good insurance that covers
$600/mo on health insurance premiums
$18/mo on renter's insurance
----------
$2798 and that is all, you will never eat out like this, go to the movies, rent a movie, or even get your kids toys. So maybe $120K is too tight.
I'm not sure what to do, you can cut things, easiest is rent, like cutting the rent budget, then the other thing is to have one car and have your husband carpool to work. I'm guessing $140K would be the minimum to go by, granted, a lot does depend on how good the health insurance is, and how much the employer expects the employee to pay, sometimes they pay 90% of the health costs, sometimes only 80% or even only 70%, sometimes you can get 100% for in-network, in which case you only have to pay co-pays. You can pay less than $1000/mo in groceries too, but that would probably require eating too many carbs, not enough protein or veggies. You could cut back savings, $1500/mo to save for your kids education is a lot to handle, but I'm not sure how you can pay for college without saving given the number of kids, you would be overwhelmed trying to pay when they are all in college, even the UCs cost a lot of money these days.
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Old 08-27-2012, 08:23 PM
 
666 posts, read 768,778 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cardinal2007 View Post
a lot does depend on how good the health insurance is, and how much the employer expects the employee to pay, sometimes they pay 90% of the health costs, sometimes only 80% or even only 70%, sometimes you can get 100% for in-network, in which case you only have to pay co-pays.
I worked at several employers in SV over the years, there are usually multiple insurance options (varying co-pays, HMO, PPO etc., if you opt for one of the better plans the employee might have to pay for the difference in premiums). However, none I have worked for covered dependents, only the employee themselves. I had a few friends who opted out (getting the money instead) of our company's coverage in favor of better/cheaper coverage through their spouse's employers plan. I have no first hand experience with dependents and insurance cost. But I am from Canada originally, I find many people who relocate from countries with nationalized health care systems, forget to factor the insurance cost in when they consider relocating to the U.S.

A friend of mine made the mistake of not checking cost of insurance for dependents when she accepted a new position. The added insurance cost negated much of the increase in income she thought she was going to get with the increase in salary.
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Old 08-28-2012, 12:10 PM
 
Location: None of anyones business, USA
61 posts, read 113,494 times
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Wow
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Old 08-28-2012, 01:04 PM
 
23 posts, read 40,409 times
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Thanks again for replies and particularly to Cardinal for a very indepth breakdown, really appreciate it. It has kind of confirmed our own thoughts with regrads to basic salary so we now just have to wait and see what kind of package is on offer.

Cheers all
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