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How much pay do I need to keep this?

by tom44 on June 27, 2013

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Question by Mustafakaji: How much pay do I need to keep this?
I want to get a decent job, but I am planning on living in an apartment or a small house, all I need/want to pay for is the utillities, internet, phone, and gas for my car. I don’t drive a lot, but how much sallery per year do I need? I also plan on living in Seattle, so it would be recommended to have some of their opinions, thanks.

Best answer:

Answer by BeeLiz19
You’re kind of working a bit backwards. It’s all about what you can afford, as opposed to what something will cost you. The simple truth is you could find an apartment for $ 200 – $ 400 bucks, but it will be $ hitty, unless that’s the rent when splitting it with room-mates. It all depends on your lifestyle of living; do you want a grand place, spacious room, utilities thrown in, etc.? It comes down to building your budget and seeing what you can afford, and then you go shopping for places in that price range.

35% of your income should be going to housing (rent, mortgage, utilities, car payments). If you don’t make car payments, then you probably want to aim this amount to be somewhere between $ 500 – $ 800, depends on how hard you want to work. Let’s pretend you get a full-time job of 40 hours at a minimum wage of $ 10/hour, you make $ 1600 a month, which means you can afford a place that costs $ 560 a month. Are you planning on going to school? In order to make this kind of money, you might need to go to part-time school or take night classes instead.

If you’ve decided that you want to make $ 1600 a month, here’s how you calculate the rest of the expenses:

10% for long-term (retirement) savings. The sooner you start the better: $ 160 a month.

15% for debt repayment, or if you owe no one money, a savings account that is your emergency fund: $ 240 a month.

35% for housing; all-inclusive, you can afford $ 560 a month (might need room-mates).

15% for transportation (gas, insurance, repairs, bus). You have $ 240 a month, but any money not used here can be put into a savings account for a new car.

25% for life (food, entertainment, clothing, gifts, travel, medical, wants, internet, phone, other). You have $ 400 a month, or $ 100 a week for this stuff, which is not a lot, but if you put little amounts towards each thing every week, you can save for the things you really need and the long-term things that come up (travel, medical).

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One thought on “How much pay do I need to keep this?

  1. STEVEN F says:

    You managed to omit ALL of the numbers required to make a reasonable GUESS. The fact you think you asked an answerable question indicates you need MUCH more financial education before you try living on your own.

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