Author Topic: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?  (Read 735 times)

teltic

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 146
Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« on: November 07, 2018, 11:08:41 AM »
I'm debating where I should live.  Both are about ~10 minute drive to work... I do plan on getting a new job in the summer (most likely in the same city, Salt Lake City).


Option 1: 1 bed 1 bath apartment for $575 plus electricity usage.  I'd get my own internet for ~45 a month(maybe I can get someones wifi password and split internet with a neighbor?), and they said electric is usually ~25-40 a month.  So total is ~$650ish.

Option 2:  3 bed 2 bath for $500 plus utilities (sharing with 1 couple and cousin).  I'd share a bathroom with the cousin.  I've known the couple for years. This house is in a low income area (Glendale), but the inside of the house is complete remodeled and I honestly don't feel scared in the neighborhood.

Which would you choose?  My finance brain says option 2 since its cheaper... But what's the value of living by yourself?  Is an extra $125-$150 a month worth it? 
« Last Edit: November 07, 2018, 11:10:36 AM by teltic »

ReadySetMillionaire

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 850
  • Location: The Buckeye State
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #1 on: November 07, 2018, 11:56:40 AM »
The year I lived by myself was absolutely glorious.  It's well worth $150 a month to be able to put way too much butter on an english muffin while naked with music blasting just because you can.

SillyPutty

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 22
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #2 on: November 07, 2018, 11:59:21 AM »
It's a personal callóbut personally, I would for sure pay an extra $150 to not have 3 roommates.

clarkfan1979

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1756
  • Age: 39
  • Location: Kauai & Denver
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #3 on: November 07, 2018, 12:06:36 PM »
I have had roommates my entire life. I have never lived alone. I went from living in a 4 bedroom home to living with my wife. I am a very big fan of having roommates. However, I have never lived with a couple.

I personally would prefer to share a bigger house with a yard than have my own apartment. If sharing a house is cheaper, then it's a no-brainer. I would also prefer to live in a cheaper neighborhood in case you need pay for conveniences within the neighborhood on occasion.

It's good that the commute is the same. It makes for a good comparison. I once shared an apartment with a guy when I was 22 and he tried to talk me into getting an apartment closer to his work that was $100 cheaper overall. It would have saved me $50/month, but I would have easily spent an extra $50/month on gas, not to mention increasing my commute from 12 minutes to 30-45 minutes. We ended up finding an apartment in the middle that gave us similar commutes.

JLee

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4983
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #4 on: November 07, 2018, 12:20:12 PM »
3 roommates is a lot.

What percentage of your income is that $150?  I live with one roommate now because it saves me ~$600/mo in rent.  $150/mo for three roommates? Ehhhhhhh.

Dogastrophe

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 12
  • Location: Nova Scotia
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #5 on: November 07, 2018, 12:26:19 PM »
IMO $150 is small price to pay for living on own.

BicycleB

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 289
  • Location: Live Music Capital of the World
  • Older than the internet, but not wiser... yet
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2018, 12:26:52 PM »
Personal decision. Like @clarkfan1979, I've mostly lived with roommates. Depends on the roommates, your ability to coexist, etc., as well as the income aspect mentioned above. 

IMHO, if you're not sure, try whichever one you haven't tried before, just to find out. If still not sure, do the cheap one.

But first, what is your savings rate in each scenario?  If over 50%, do what you want. If under 25% and the difference is over 10% of income, learn to live with roomies. Just my opinion.

Kapiira

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 139
  • Location: Albuquerque, NM
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2018, 12:30:22 PM »
I notice that you're not including utilities in the house rental.  I know utility prices can vary widely from area to area, but it wouldn't be unreasonable for you to end up spending $50/mo on utilities.  If it's an inefficient house, there's a swimming pool, or a roommate that likes to keep the house very warm or very cool, it could cost more.  It's worth finding out how much their utilities run if you're on the fence.

PoutineLover

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 943
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2018, 12:33:41 PM »
I'd personally go with alone, that's a lot of roomies for a small difference in rent. I really enjoyed living alone and if I'm ever not living with my partner again I'd rather live alone than with roomies. But if you are in debt, not saving much, or that $150 is a significant amount for you, then probably best to go with the roomies until you are in a better position. If you are paying utilities with 4 people, remember that they may not be careful about the heat and lights, and that cuts into your savings. And if you are dating, then it's a bit of a buzzkill not to have your own place. Just some random things that could influence the decision.

NV Teacher

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 430
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2018, 12:35:01 PM »
So for an extra $5 a day you get to have all the space to yourself.  No one that leaves a mess.  No one that uses your stuff.  No one that has obnoxious guests over.  No one that is late on paying their share of the bills.  No one that criticizes what you do. what you say, how you cook, when you clean, etc.  Seems like a no brainer to me.

teltic

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 146
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #10 on: November 07, 2018, 12:38:32 PM »
What percentage of your income is that $150?  I live with one roommate now because it saves me ~$600/mo in rent.  $150/mo for three roommates? Ehhhhhhh.

I make $66k a year. So $150 * 12 = $1800 / $66000 = 2.7% of my income.. Never thought about it this way.  Hmm..


But first, what is your savings rate in each scenario?  If over 50%, do what you want. If under 25% and the difference is over 10% of income, learn to live with roomies. Just my opinion.

I know I always max roth, HSA, & 401k. So $27,750 /$66000 = 42%.  I know I throw money into my individual account a lot (this year was a weird high salary year (made nearly double).  Don't expect that to continue).


IMHO, if you're not sure, try whichever one you haven't tried before, just to find out.

I've never lived by myself before!  I've always had roommates my entire life (27).  Maybe It'll be a good test run to live by myself.


Alright, thank you for the post  you guys!  I think I'm going to do the 1 bedroom condo.  I overanalyze everything I do, so it's good to hear most would pay the extra money to live solo!

So for an extra $5 a day you get to have all the space to yourself. 

Good way thinking of it!

But if you are in debt, not saving much, or that $150 is a significant amount for you, then probably best to go with the roomies until you are in a better position. If you are paying utilities with 4 people, remember that they may not be careful about the heat and lights, and that cuts into your savings. And if you are dating, then it's a bit of a buzzkill not to have your own place. Just some random things that could influence the decision.

I just crossed $250k in my fidelity account (woot). No debt.  Well, like $2k on my car.  But I decided getting a loan at 2.75% in 2014 was better than paying $9k cash for the car and invest the difference (I won on that idea).   I am single and ready to make dating a priority...  Having roommates would be kind of a buzzkill in the dating department.


I just messaged the guy with the condo available! :)   Thanks again you guys!
« Last Edit: November 07, 2018, 12:42:26 PM by teltic »

JLee

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4983
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #11 on: November 07, 2018, 12:40:51 PM »
What percentage of your income is that $150?  I live with one roommate now because it saves me ~$600/mo in rent.  $150/mo for three roommates? Ehhhhhhh.

I make $66k a year. So $150 * 12 = $1800 / $66000 = 2.7% of my income.. Never thought about it this way.  Hmm..


But first, what is your savings rate in each scenario?  If over 50%, do what you want. If under 25% and the difference is over 10% of income, learn to live with roomies. Just my opinion.

I know I always max roth, HSA, & 401k. So $27,750 /$66000 = 42%.  I know I throw money into my individual account a lot (this year was a weird high salary year (made nearly double).  Don't expect that to continue).


IMHO, if you're not sure, try whichever one you haven't tried before, just to find out.

I've never lived by myself before!  I've always had roommates my entire life (27).  Maybe It'll be a good test run to live by myself.


Alright, thank you for the post  you guys!  I think I'm going to do the 1 bedroom condo.  I overanalyze everything I do, so it's good to hear most would pay the extra money to live solo!

Another thought experiment: if you had a place to yourself and three people were like "hey can we all live with you? We'll each give you $1.67/day" -- what would you say?

I just ran that math myself and I'm saving about 6% of my gross income to have one roommate.  2.7% for three doesn't sound good to me, lol.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2018, 12:44:17 PM by JLee »

teltic

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 146
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2018, 12:46:39 PM »

I just ran that math myself and I'm saving about 6% of my gross income to have one roommate.  2.7% for three doesn't sound good to me, lol.

I like the idea of calculating it as a parentage of gross income!  Yeah 2.7% doesn't make sense.  I was thinking maybe it'd be fun to party with them every day... But why not just live by myself and occasionally visit them to party?  Then the second I get tired I just go home. haha

Jouer

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 329
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2018, 01:20:58 PM »
Like a couple of others on this thread, I loved living with others in a house. Way better than living by myself in a small apartment.

Having said that, I briefly lived with a couple and it sucked. They tended to want to do cleaning at 8am Sunday morning when I was getting home only 4-5 hours earlier (I was in my 20s and single). It's all about compatibility. In this situation there wasn't any...but in other situations I've had excellent compatibility with housemates.

It's not just about partying with them, it's eating together with others, watching TV/gaming/whatever together. It's best if there is enough space where you can bugger off on your own if you feel the need to be by yourself.

Milizard

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 582
  • Location: West Michigan
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2018, 07:11:15 PM »
Back when I was really young,  I was kind of scared to live alone. As I matured, I realized that there are very very few people I could live with without getting stressed by their presence in some way.

jeff2017

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 103
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #15 on: November 07, 2018, 08:05:11 PM »
You are definitely making the right choice. It's a no brainer for me based on the info you provided. Enjoy the solo living!

herbgeek

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 80
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #16 on: November 08, 2018, 02:50:55 PM »
Quote
I was thinking maybe it'd be fun to party with them every day.

If you do that, say bye bye to any cost savings.  :D

DS

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 586
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #17 on: November 08, 2018, 02:56:42 PM »
Def vote for alone! In my city it cost about $300 to go from 3 roommates to by myself but it was so worth it for my personal sanity. And I don't consume nearly as much in utilities so there's some offset.

teltic

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 146
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #18 on: November 08, 2018, 03:25:35 PM »
Quote
I was thinking maybe it'd be fun to party with them every day.

If you do that, say bye bye to any cost savings.  :D

That is one thing I thought about!  My eating and drinking at bars would go way up if I lived with them.  Sadly I would guess I'd eat/drink $150 more a month being around them monthly.

Signing the lease tonight for the 1 bed apartment! :)

couponvan

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 4658
  • Location: Illinois
    • My journal
Re: Live alone for $650 or with 3 roommates (friends) for $500?
« Reply #19 on: November 08, 2018, 04:13:29 PM »
Ask for a discount because you will only be one person in the apartment. They can only say no and you pay the same, but they might discount it $25-$50.