I’ve mentioned my friend, Dee, before. She is the kind of person that will pelt you with perkiness when you are having a bad day. She just ignores most grumpy moments and waits for you to be normal again. She also pouts in the cutest way I’ve ever seen, and her soul animal would be a kitten (she already pounces on people when she thinks you are being too lazy or when she is bored). Overall, she is a hoot to be around and even though we’ve only become friends this year, I hope I still know her when I am old and gray. I think any nursing home would be lucky to have us two in it at the same time…
Anyway, Dee has a new financial goal. She would like to buy a good-sized travel trailer and rent some land so that she can own her own place as soon as possible. And yes, a travel trailer is way more compact and cheaper than an actual house, and that is exactly what she wants. She is more of a minimalist than me, but it has taken her a while to break some semi-hoarding tendencies that annoyed her. In fact, she just started her own blog about this – Losing Stuff Gaining Freedom!
Her current apartment lease isn’t up for renewal until August 2014, so she would like to use this next year to save up what she needs, find the trailer, find the land, and then move on with her life.
She came over to my place for her first step, a little help creating a new budget that will allow her to save at least $1000 per month towards her goal. The trailers that she is looking at range from $4500-$6500 and land around here for that sort of living will cost $250-$450 a month (which is way better than the $855 a month in rent that she pays now). She wants to save enough to buy the trailer in cash and have a small emergency fund left for anything that pops up.
So to summarize, Dee is aiming to save at least $10,000 by July 31, 2014.
Dee’s New Budget
To reach this goal, she knew she would need to make some big cuts. She also used a referral link from me (https://r.capitalone360.com/yZwqNpAxXx) to open a CapitalOne360 Savings Account to keep her goal fund separate from the rest of her money. That link can be used to earn a free $25 for a savings account or $50 for a checking account.
She is a public school art teacher and brings in about $3200 a month after taxes, benefits like health insurance, and a $200 a month contribution to a 403b. That is separate from the teacher pension plan that is building up for her too. There are some benefits to being a teacher. 🙂
She also recently bought a little car for cash that has become a money pit, so she has to budget in for maintenance there too. All of that said, here is the budget that we came up with that she agrees is realistic:
- Goal Savings Account (she’s paying herself first) – $1000
- Car Maintenance Savings – $200
- Rent – $855
- Car Insurance – $70
- Gasoline – $160
- Electricity – $80
- Internet (DSL) – $50
- Cell Phone – $45
- Restaurants (also uses as entertainment with friends) – $300
- Groceries – $200
- Teaching – $50
- Clothing (she’s one of the friends that got me into thrift stores) – $25
- Entertainment – $25
- Cash – $20
- Miscellaneous (to be used for savings too if untouched) – $120
- TOTAL – $3200 – $2000 for Living Expenses and $1200 for Different Savings Goals
Using Us As Accountability Partners
Dee said she would like to update us regularly with how she is doing to help herself stay on track. She is the friend of mine that threw herself into weight loss like 3 months ago and is now working out 3-5 times a week in the gym and pushes me to stay on Weight Watchers. When she sets her mind to something, it happens. So I am really excited to see how this works out for her!
Do you need some accountability partners for anything? Just comment below and we can try to keep each other on track. 🙂
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FYI: I worked at a dead end cubicle job from 2005-2011 for about $30,000 per year. I went self-employed in July 2011 and make between $70,000-$90,000 through blogging, professional pet sitting, hubby's reffing, and our rental home. If you’d like to start your own site (link to my free step-by-step guide), I highly suggest checking out Bluehost (my referral link with a nice discount for you, PLUS a free custom header banner from me!). Please contact me any time at budgetingfunstuff*at*gmail*dot*com with questions or just to brainstorm! I’d love to help!