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Old 12-06-2013, 11:33 PM
 
35,095 posts, read 51,109,197 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkm091 View Post
I'm a 22-year-old college student and my boyfriend and I are looking to move into our own apartment. We live in western Pennsylvania, where the cost of living is quite low and we have found a decent two-bedroom townhouse nearby for $575, including sewage. It has central air and gas heating. We've never lived on our own before and we're nervous about making the move. We're trying to figure out if we can realistically afford it.

We only make a combined income of about $1700-1800 a month. We are very lucky in that we do not have car payments nor do we have any credit card debt whatsoever. So our main expenses would be electricity, gas, cable/internet, car insurance, gas for the cars, and groceries. I believe that we should be able to pay our utilities and rent with about half of our earnings. The other half would go towards the cars and food. This is what worries me the most because they will undoubtedly be our biggest expenses. Is it possible for two people to eat relatively well for under $250 a month? This is assuming that we don't eat out. Both of us have to travel about 15-20 minutes on the highway 4 to 5 times a week to get to work and school. I don't really track it at the moment so I'm nervous about how much gas will cost.

So what do you think? Can we do it? I think that some odds are in our favor, such as the fact that we don't have the burden of car payments and that we will live in a low-cost area. So if we follow a budget and aren't careless, can we get by alright? And perhaps even have a little extra money to occasionally eat out or see a movie? I might take another job part-time that would earn me an additional $350-400 a month. Do you recommend this?

Your help will be greatly appreciated.

If you cannot live on $1800.00 per month you do not know how to handle your finances properly and should not be getting an apartment until you learn how to handle your finances properly and be responsible with your money so you do not end up having to pay more than you make.

Look for and follow a good financial program that will teach you how to handle your budget, monthly expenses, savings and wants appropriately to keep yourself out of debt and out of financial disaster.
I think Dave Ramsey's program is a good one but many others do not like him. He is not the only one who has a financial program available so look for and find one you like and BOTH of you need to be on the same page with any financial program all the time.

 
Old 12-08-2013, 09:54 AM
 
1,721 posts, read 1,624,962 times
Reputation: 3425
Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
How about if you didn't have welfare? That's really what it was about, $1,800 a month. Not $1,800 a month and food stamps, section 8 rent, free medical insurance.
I'm not on welfare or section 8 or food stamps. My medical is paid though. I still think $1,800 a month is adequate if you budget and are frugal.

I only commented on this thread because it caught my eye! For me personally I could easily do it. It depends on one's expenses and how much debt they have too.

Last edited by Littlelu; 12-08-2013 at 10:14 AM..
 
Old 12-08-2013, 10:50 AM
 
Location: Table Rock Lake
971 posts, read 1,448,545 times
Reputation: 959
Quote:
Originally Posted by Littlelu View Post
I'm not on welfare or section 8 or food stamps. My medical is paid though. I still think $1,800 a month is adequate if you budget and are frugal.

I only commented on this thread because it caught my eye! For me personally I could easily do it. It depends on one's expenses and how much debt they have too.
You are correct LittleLu. BUT eventially the continually increase in costs will catch up with you as I found out in the 18 years I have been retired. Many things are 4 times higher in price than when I retired. I can't even imagine what the costs of food, utilities, transportation and insurance will be after this incompetant government gets removed from their blank check spending sprees!

As you said, Medicare is NOT welfare. My Medicare premiums are $199.80 a month paid out of my 39 years of paid into social security benefits.
 
Old 12-08-2013, 10:56 AM
 
2,420 posts, read 4,359,900 times
Reputation: 3528
Quote:
Originally Posted by CSD610 View Post
If you cannot live on $1800.00 per month you do not know how to handle your finances properly and should not be getting an apartment until you learn how to handle your finances properly and be responsible with your money so you do not end up having to pay more than you make.

Look for and follow a good financial program that will teach you how to handle your budget, monthly expenses, savings and wants appropriately to keep yourself out of debt and out of financial disaster.
I think Dave Ramsey's program is a good one but many others do not like him. He is not the only one who has a financial program available so look for and find one you like and BOTH of you need to be on the same page with any financial program all the time.
I don't think you can make a blanket statement like that. It really depends on where you live and how old you are and where you get your health insurance from. Housing and health insurance can be big items, depending on where you live. There are places in the midwest, Texas, and some of the southern states that have very reasonable housing and are generally cheaper to live. So, though yes, it can be done, it can be done much easier if you reside in one of these areas. If your 60 years old, and have to purchase your own health insurance, you can easily be looking at at least around $350+, even with the new subsidy.

And yes I know we have some people who live out in small rural areas out in no man's land, who have some land, and grow their own food, have chicken and pigs, but that is usually not two working college students are looking for.
 
Old 12-08-2013, 11:10 AM
 
Location: Vallejo
21,723 posts, read 24,957,207 times
Reputation: 18993
Quote:
Originally Posted by Seeker5in1 View Post
Medicare is not welfare. There was no mention in her post of food stamps or section 8.
Yes, it is. It's a social welfare program and welfare. For the retired, it's at least to some degree paid for by your own earnings. It would be complicated to say whether one has funded as much as the actuarial determined benefit without having much more intimate knowledge about both Medicare and the individual's social security records, neither of which I have. Of course, that's completely irrelevant. Regardless of whether one pays in more or less than they take out doesn't change that it is a social welfare program.

I happen to be a very large proponent of Medical, which is also irrelevant. The relevant point is surviving off $1,800 in cash and $1,800 in cash plus $500 a month in welfare benefits are different. Whether you paid more than the cost of the welfare benefit over a long, well-paid working career or less than the benefit during a shorter, low-paying work history is a separate issue. Most people don't pay in as much as they take out, which is why Medicare is insolvent. That's an entirely separate issue.
 
Old 12-08-2013, 01:19 PM
 
2,420 posts, read 4,359,900 times
Reputation: 3528
Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
Yes, it is. It's a social welfare program and welfare. For the retired, it's at least to some degree paid for by your own earnings. It would be complicated to say whether one has funded as much as the actuarial determined benefit without having much more intimate knowledge about both Medicare and the individual's social security records, neither of which I have. Of course, that's completely irrelevant. Regardless of whether one pays in more or less than they take out doesn't change that it is a social welfare program.

I happen to be a very large proponent of Medical, which is also irrelevant. The relevant point is surviving off $1,800 in cash and $1,800 in cash plus $500 a month in welfare benefits are different. Whether you paid more than the cost of the welfare benefit over a long, well-paid working career or less than the benefit during a shorter, low-paying work history is a separate issue. Most people don't pay in as much as they take out, which is why Medicare is insolvent. That's an entirely separate issue.
Here's a possible budget for someone living in a low cost area.

rent 525
Car ins 60
Elect 50
Water 26
internet 30
gas 30
Ooma Phone 4
Total 725 Leaving a balance of $275 a month for everything else.

Now I admit this may be possible in certain areas, but the killer is always the unexpected expenses, such as car repairs, etc. I know someone can eat pretty cheaply if they are resourceful and really plan their meals. The problem lies in all of these expenses going up every year (and they always do) Social security is never going to cover the actual increases we experience across the board. In fact they are now designing new lower cost of living increases which will make it worse. But maybe income can be subsidized enough by selling on ebay, or doing some dog sitting to keep up with things.


Whether Medicare is a "welfare" program or not is a mute point. It was your aspersions that the poster (because she was receiving Medicare), must also be on Section 8, food stamps, and subsidized utilities. She only stated that she is managing on $1,000 a month, but had medical provided through Medicare. You took it to the next level. You are arguing a red herring.

Last edited by modhatter; 12-08-2013 at 01:47 PM..
 
Old 12-08-2013, 01:36 PM
 
1,721 posts, read 1,624,962 times
Reputation: 3425
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluff_Dweller View Post
You are correct LittleLu. BUT eventially the continually increase in costs will catch up with you as I found out in the 18 years I have been retired. Many things are 4 times higher in price than when I retired. I can't even imagine what the costs of food, utilities, transportation and insurance will be after this incompetant government gets removed from their blank check spending sprees!

As you said, Medicare is NOT welfare. My Medicare premiums are $199.80 a month paid out of my 39 years of paid into social security benefits.
I'm not going to worry myself about what's going to happen in the future. Deal with it when it happens. Besides what good would it do me? I've managed for 4 years and who knows how long we will live?!
 
Old 12-08-2013, 01:38 PM
 
Location: Long Neck,De
4,792 posts, read 8,170,549 times
Reputation: 4840
Quote:
Originally Posted by Squirl View Post
It's possible for sure. But this the stuff most of the Judge Judy's shows are made of. If you don't watch the snow, here's what often happens. Two people move in.money is tight and then one of the pair has an unexpected expense such as:

Vehicle dies or car accident
DUI or bar fight and guy gets arrested
One loses job
One cheats on the other
They get a dog and it damages the rental unit or bites a neighbor
They dislike eachother's friend(s)
One gets sick or injured and loses income


Here's what happens next.....one or more

One moves out and there's big issues about covering rent and returning Security deposits
One covers the other person's bail/rent/car repair or replacement
Another person --addl roommate-- moves in to help with expenses and there are clashes
One grows up and the other becomes a party boy
One pays for all the fun times and then wants reimbursement when everything sours


So, with a tight budget, you really really really need very sound ground rules to address all of the above. I guarantee that more than one of the above will be happening
Of course if they get on Judge Judy the show pays the bill. Up to $5,000
 
Old 12-08-2013, 05:35 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
21,723 posts, read 24,957,207 times
Reputation: 18993
Quote:
Originally Posted by modhatter View Post
Here's a possible budget for someone living in a low cost area.

rent 525
Car ins 60
Elect 50
Water 26
internet 30
gas 30
Ooma Phone 4
Total 725 Leaving a balance of $275 a month for everything else.
My new medical insurance is $240 month. That leaves $35 a month for food. I'd have to chose between eating an medical insurance. That's an easy choice, but not really one that's viable long-term. I'd be one trip to urgent car away from bankruptcy.

Even choosing food over, $30 a month only buys at most 10 gallons of gas, good for about 250 miles. That's very little. Perhaps if you don't work that's plenty to just go to the grocery store and run a few necessary errands. How many errands can you need to run, anyway, when you only have $275 a month for everything? What about when it breaks? I mean, it's obviously an older car since someone on that budget can't afford to lease a new car.

Quote:
But maybe income can be subsidized enough by selling on ebay, or doing some dog sitting to keep up with things.
In which case they aren't making do on $1,000 a month.

Quote:
Whether Medicare is a "welfare" program or not is a mute point. It was your aspersions that the poster (because she was receiving Medicare), must also be on Section 8, food stamps, and subsidized utilities. She only stated that she is managing on $1,000 a month, but had medical provided through Medicare. You took it to the next level. You are arguing a red herring.
No, I didn't. I never said she was on section 8 or food stamps. She's on welfare. She said as much. Those are all examples of welfare. It doesn't mean she's on them. Making do on an income of $1,000 plus welfare is very different than making do on an income of $1,000.
 
Old 12-08-2013, 06:04 PM
 
2,420 posts, read 4,359,900 times
Reputation: 3528
Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
How about if you didn't have welfare? That's really what it was about, $1,800 a month. Not $1,800 a month and food stamps, section 8 rent, free medical insurance.
And I thought I suffered from senior moments.

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