99 Ways to Stretch Your Home Budget: Save Up to $2000 a Month--Or More!

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I purchased this last year not 13 years ago. Even my insurance company was impressed with this deal. I am a single separated mom with an ex that contributes at random. Please Len, if you have the time, could you show us an itemized list of how you do it. I see that you are out of the woods for a lot of these debts, so you feel secure.

But, most of us have to have these debts at some point until we can pay them off. For example, people can avoid car loans by saving their money to buy very modestly priced used cars. As for college, in California at least, people can go to community colleges and get all of their general ed classes out of the way for a fraction of the cost of big universities.

How Much Rent Can I Afford on My Hourly Pay? - My First Apartment

In the meantime, they can work and save up for a reasonably priced college. I got an electrical engineering degree exactly that way with no student loans. Even so, lets say I just graduated from college with student loans and a job in So. I could still make it on that salary — easily! For example, my office mate is currently renting three rooms in his house in Long Beach to three tenants for exactly that price.

Tag: Automation

But I showed you an itemized list of how I do it — including heating — with a family of four, no less! I also said it would be no frills — just the necessities, of course. You must not live in Southern California. It gets cold here too in the winter! Respectfully, the decision to have children is a choice. Therefore, child care is a a de facto choice. The most important message here for people just starting out, is that it CAN be done — as long as they make smart choices. Well said, Ani. We moved to a state with an astronomically high sales tax, which has eaten up a good chunk of what seems to be a huge difference, but the real deal-breaker for us has been health insurance.

Rent alone, but that way, eats up about a third of our take-home pay. I guess I was just bothered by your casual assumption that you could squeeze thousands of extra dollars a year out of a budget by simply reducing grocery and utility bills, etc. Thanks for your thoughtful post, Laura.

I ramble. A lot. Like right now. Clearly, it is a no-frills lifestyle. I consider where we choose to live to also be one of those choices. And then on top of that running massive budget deficits because Republicans axe tax revenues while not making cuts in spending or increasing spending which is more typical in order to fight more useless wars and waste it on the pentagon. No thanks to your Tea Party ideas. I do like your non-political advice though. A great article. I have lived on less for many years both in London and more easily in Devon rural S. On this topic you might like some of the ideas I have put forward in The Sirisuk Declaration.

Thanks, Nick. I am categorically opposed to the premise behind the The Sirisuk Declaration. Following the side issue. What we fail to consider when we determine what type of government to have, is that someone will always want to be in control and have more than others.

100 Ways to Save Money

Since our motives can never be perfect, every system will have flaws. The best governments take that into consideration and put checks and balances in place. How can that be determined, and who will enforce it on others, and how will the enforcer keep from becoming a dictator? I think the most difficult thing was moreso dealing with people who expected us to have more than we did, possibly simply because they had expectations for us to be at an average income level.

It was more of an annoyance rather than an issue of survival. However, with Social Security and low-income senior housing, she already has a plan to live frugally despite the small retirement savings. Interestingly, I have received some criticisms assuming the project is part of a centralising socialist agenda and some assuming the project is part of a right wing movement.

In fact it is neither. Polituical parties of all colours have to know how they are going to address the confluence of limited resources and expanding economies. For the one who was asking where to find such cheap housing… There are a lot of cheap places to live along the 15 south of Camp Pendleton. Awww, thanks, Lessa! And thanks for the housing example too! Wowzer, great post! I completely agree. Go, Len Penzo! What about having a savings account? This is a season in your life.


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It will not last forever. You are learning. Meantime, you should be able to shave a little something off the food bill, even in Denver. And once your internet obligations are over, shop around. Is that the best cell phone plan out there? How does tracphone work in your area? Those ideas should help some.

One thing that takes the ouch out of eating in is making ethnic foods. They can be quite cheap and a lot of fun. They often focus around low cost and healthy ingredients like beans and rice and can be fun. This is something my wife and I enjoy doing, and I think it really makes the meals fun. We just need to figure out how to do Ethiopian food now! I know. It is a lot tougher when you have things like credit cards to pay off. What I would in your situation is sit down and list all of your expenses.

I understand that pre-school is important. But I would use that money to pay off that credit card bill as fast as I could first. Once that was done, then I would build up some savings. Only after I had a sufficient emergency fund established would I send my daughter to pre-school. I know a lot of people would probably disagree with me on that one, but that is just my opinion. I realize these are really tough decisions. It sounds like you are determined, so I know you can do it, Sabrina!

Determination is half the battle.

Hang in there. Hi, Len! If I read correctly, Sabrina is a full-time student. So I am guessing that her daughter is in pre-school while Sabrina goes to school. I think that the key to being able to live on as little as possible is to establish a very strong budget and prune down your spending.

HOW I SPEND ONLY $100 ON GROCERIES A MONTH!

Well said, Will. I like how you say that, as if we could go back in time and change the decisions we made. Hi Kaylen. The more correct decisions we make from here on out, the sooner we can start to undo any poor decisions we made in the past. My hope with this post was not to sound pretentious — although I completely understand that it does come off that way — but to help younger readers who are just starting out will see the impacts current decisions have on our futures. Your post reminded me that NJ really is tops when it comes to auto insurance.