Author Topic: Ever feel like there's never enough money?  (Read 4114 times)

EconDiva

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Ever feel like there's never enough money?
« on: September 05, 2013, 11:29:59 AM »
I want to increase my income by a certain amount by the end of next year. It's a good chance that the next job will not be practical to commute to via public transit, and I don't currently own a car.

The downside of getting a car again is that I'm trying to avoid lifestyle inflation....I don't want to make more only to end up spending more; I'd like to keep my expenses down. I feel like its a tough decision and sometimes makes me feel like I'm always trying to get closer toy financial goals, but yet there's never enough money to make it to the goals in the timeframe I want because as income goes up, so do expenses a lot of the time...

Can anyone else relate?

Justaerin

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Re: Ever feel like there's never enough money?
« Reply #1 on: September 05, 2013, 12:06:40 PM »
I can totally relate.  The really simple, tried and true method is to just add whatever percentage your pay is increasing to your automatic savings deductions so you never see it.  Works well enough if you don't give yourself too-easy access to savings or just invest it off immediately. 

I get excited about my pay increases and they actually make me want to live more simply: "If I get paid this much more AND cut this expense, OMFG even MOAR SAVINGS" or something of the like :)

willn

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Re: Ever feel like there's never enough money?
« Reply #2 on: September 05, 2013, 12:18:16 PM »
Interesting. So you think the increase in pay would be offset by the costs of commuting.  Hmm. How about in the long run? In five years will you be able to command a higher salary because you take this better opportunity now? That would make the long run view more favorable.  Could you move closer to the new job within 6 months and get your expenses back down, sell the car etc.?

Russ

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Re: Ever feel like there's never enough money?
« Reply #3 on: September 05, 2013, 12:29:29 PM »
Interesting. So you think the increase in pay would be offset by the costs of commuting.  Hmm. How about in the long run? In five years will you be able to command a higher salary because you take this better opportunity now? That would make the long run view more favorable.  Could you move closer to the new job within 6 months and get your expenses back down, sell the car etc.?

+1

Do the math. If it works out that you'll be making more money considering the car costs then great, stop feeling bad. If it doesn't work out, reconsider the job. No reason IMO to feel one way or the other about it until you've actually run the numbers.

To your original question, I do think it's inconvenient that you have to spend money to make money sometimes. Knowing that, I do my best to go into a job fully recognizing its consequences.

Frugally-raised

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Re: Ever feel like there's never enough money?
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2013, 08:45:47 AM »
Yes, it is frustrating!

The only way to control it is to really run the numbers. Vague worries should sound the warning bell, but don't continue to worry without actually sitting down to do the math. You might find that it isn't as bad as you thought, or that you can do a few things to mitigate the risk.

And as other posters said, don't discount the long-term effects. When my mother went back to work after I was born in 1968, all of her salary went to pay for what was essentially a nanny/housekeeper. How depressing is that? But my parents wanted high-quality care (not only did they pay a living wage, but they also paid into social security for my caretakers, which was a rare thing in those days), and they knew they could live modestly on my father's salary.

I don't know how many years she worked "for nothing", but it was a calculated risk. In her field, she had to stay in the game if she wanted a career (and she loved the work). So, years of working "for nothing" did pay off when she began to advance through her career and earned more money. She ended up earning far more than my father when she retired. (And they still live off my father's salary!)

Arbor33

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Re: Ever feel like there's never enough money?
« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2013, 11:13:35 AM »
I agree with the other posters: do the math.

I can say that I do feel similarly at times. This is one of the reasons it's so important to make your money work for you instead/along side of working for your money. By saving and investing those savings you're raising your level of income exponentially. It may take a lot of effort to get that big boulder rolling downhill, but once it gets moving, it's going to keep gaining speed.

jrhampt

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Re: Ever feel like there's never enough money?
« Reply #6 on: September 06, 2013, 11:22:02 AM »
And as other posters said, don't discount the long-term effects. When my mother went back to work after I was born in 1968, all of her salary went to pay for what was essentially a nanny/housekeeper. How depressing is that? But my parents wanted high-quality care (not only did they pay a living wage, but they also paid into social security for my caretakers, which was a rare thing in those days), and they knew they could live modestly on my father's salary.

I don't know how many years she worked "for nothing", but it was a calculated risk. In her field, she had to stay in the game if she wanted a career (and she loved the work). So, years of working "for nothing" did pay off when she began to advance through her career and earned more money. She ended up earning far more than my father when she retired. (And they still live off my father's salary!)

This is a very good point, and one that I think people tend to forget when they advocate having a stay at home parent.  It's not really working for nothing, is it?  Especially if you're paying into SS and a retirement plan with an employer match...

But on topic, yes, it is tough to invest in your career early on only to feel that you are going nowhere...but eventually it does pay off.  I went to grad school, got various certifications, taking time and money, but eventually the gap increases, and all of a sudden there's a surplus.