Author Topic: 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!  (Read 2372 times)


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« on: May 16, 2018, 12:43:34 PM »
Hi all!

Been browsing for a while, but just getting around to sharing my situation now. I don’t have a lot of exciting things going on numbers wise currently (that I believe), but I outlined a Hypothetical move budget as well. Overall, I’d like to hear your wisdom/facepunches/advice as I am approaching a life change and moving across the state to be with my serious boyfriend. I am in the job search now and am hopeful about making the same as I do now, a ~5k cut in pay is possible as COL is lower there.

Life Situation: Age: 24 (single, no dependents)
Gross Salary/Wages: $55,000  (Net pay is 1,539 2x a month)
401k (invested in as low-cost options as possible 10% contribution 3% match; 90/10 AA) – 12,310
Taxable (100% S&P 500 index) – 3,952
Roth (100% S&P 500 index) – 3,910
Savings (Discover online) – 10,475
Emergency Savings –  3,500
Total Assets: 34,147

-   Own a 2010 Corolla with 30k miles, but don’t classify it as an asset ~ 8,000
-   Once the move is over, I plan on maxing my Roth with any savings money I have over about 3-6 months of expenses

Student Loan: 20,340 @ 3%, 5 year fixed, just refinanced through SoFi – love it!
*Happy to have paid off 20,000 in 1.5 years on this but I have been making just the standard payment for the past 5 months to save up extra cash for the move. Once I’m settled I could go back to paying as much as possible monthly or let it ride until I feel comfortable paying it off in full at some point.

Current Expenses:
Rent – 300 (live with Mom)
Student Loan - 390
Groceries – 200
Gas – 45
Auto Ins – 111
Restaurants – 120 (~30/4 x a month)
Starbucks -  35 (I know, it’s a luxury! 2.92/ 12 x a month)
Gifts/Random Shopping - 100
Travel to Boyfriend – 70

Hypothetical Move Expenses – AKA punch me in the face since I’m daydreaming and also don’t know what the real-world costs
Rent (1200 a month total for nice 1br apartment with parking in town so we can walk places) – 600
Renters Ins - 10
Utilities   - 100
Student Loan - 390
Cable/Internet - 50
Phone - 60
Groceries - 200
Gas – 80 (anticipating this being higher than now with not working from home 2x a week)
auto ins    - 111
Gym?   30
Eating Out- 200
Gifts/Random Shopping – 100

Other financial Goals on the horizon:
1. Traditional wedding ceremony/reception in about 5 years – will not be paid for by family and will be larger than I’d like. I’d prefer a small beach wedding followed by a month-long honeymoon if I’m going to spend 30k :)

2. Real Estate investing – Outside of a personal residence which I consider an expense vs. an investment I’d like to have a multi-family unit and maybe some college housing to manage and possibly become my full-time gig once I have kids so that I can take a few years off/possibly retire from desk work. This type of work does suit my personality. Goal here would be to buy in about 4-6 years.

3. Become FI in my 40’s!

Thank you all in advance for your thoughts!
« Last Edit: May 16, 2018, 02:08:00 PM by vae »


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« Reply #1 on: May 16, 2018, 04:11:40 PM »
Not at all saying your relationship won't last living together or marriage but these days you have a 50/50 statistic where money is the #1 partnership fight and so its better to have a solid individual cushion so as to not find yourself living paycheck to paycheck starting all over in your 30's.

I'm sure you've calculated the below figures out on your own in the decision making but just to be sure:
From what I see current expenses come to 1371.00, new expenses will be ~1931.00 a 560.00 a month increase while at the same time taking a hypothetical 10% pay cut. After the move as expenses have increased and pay has decreased you will only have about 1/2 of your current play money to divide between a RE Fund, the wedding, student loan prepayment, accruing a sufficient emergency fund, and contributing to your Roth. Below you can contrast the time decay of waiting and saving or moving now. I'm assuming in this you accumulate your EFund first as if something happened to your partner after paying the full rent on your own you would only have 1-200.00 to last the month in which you'd have to ditch all other savings for future. If you happen to not like the place or living situation you do not want to find yourself unable to have choices.

                                                              Delaying Move:               Taking Move:
1. Fill 6 month E Fund bucket:                   4.73 months                    9.64 months
2. Pay off SLoans:                                     9.73 months                    17.09 months
3. Wedding Fund:                @15,000       7.15 months                    12.21 months
                                            @30,000      14.30 months                    24.41 months

Fully paying off these expenses while taking the move would put you about 3-4 years out from now( + if adding in Roth savings also) where you'd then be debt free and able to funnel all your savings towards an RE Property. As I don't have any information about the RE market where your looking as far as rent availability, prospects, ratio's, etc I'll leave that out of my answer.

Not the most fun or impulsive opinion I know but I like to play it safe and If it were me I'd not move until the SLoans were fully paid off and the EFund was fully funded (about 1 year), then move and decide in that new living experience if it is right for myself, potential future family, and the partnership to save for a wedding or RE property or both.

What ever path you decide best wishes and Good Luck!!


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Re: 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2018, 04:18:09 PM »
very small note that your car insurance may change in a new location and you get a few free quotes to check this now. nothing that I'd let change my decision or anything but one more piece of available data. Also if you can swing it pay it 6months at a time if you get a discount.


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Re: 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2018, 06:29:51 PM »
I’m sure the boyfriend is a lovely dude and you’ll be together forever, but when you do move in together keep a little cash in reserve just in case you need to move out unexpectedly.  #girlpower #femalefinancialindependence


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2018, 06:54:43 PM »
Wow – thank you all for the responses!

On the boyfriend points I’m keeping my wits about me that anything could change on the drop of a dime, BUT he’s awesome and is also a natural saver. I think being on the same page financially is so important for a relationship, whether that be both savers or both spenders.

@ CrispKale
So cool you did that breakdown. I’m so prone to feeling like I’m doing okay and not really getting into the nitty gritty numbers. In an ideal world I would have my student loans paid off before the move but it has been two LONG years of distance and we are done with it. There’s a good chance I would get/create a side job to make an extra 500 bucks a month hopefully to throw at the loan and build up the down payment savings on a property.
Another thought I have is the fear of having too much cash in comparison to invested assets. I feel like being my age, it would be easy to weather possible job loss with minimal time between work if that happened. I see the amount of emergency fund I have as increasing with age where a lapse in work would be harder to manage as time goes on. Also, saving for so many things at once – 1-2 homes, wedding, car replacement, etc I feel like I would have way too much cash. I’m probably thinking about this wrong though.

Yes, I should look into this! I’m moving from the Philly burbs to Pittsburgh so maybe I could squeeze out a few bucks there.

Totally agree on this! Also, until marriage I plan on keeping finances separate other than a joint account for bills possibly or just go Venmo route. Still wondering how to approach wedding saving when the time comes…take each other’s word for it or make an account. We’ll see!


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2018, 10:40:59 AM »
Totally agree on this! Also, until marriage I plan on keeping finances separate other than a joint account for bills possibly or just go Venmo route. Still wondering how to approach wedding saving when the time comes…take each other’s word for it or make an account. We’ll see!

Personally, I would go the "take each other's word for it" route. Tons of people get married after only knowing each other for a year (or less) and when they get engaged come together and say "I have X amount that I can contribute to a wedding". You two can look at your finances together without actually sharing the account, too.

Good luck to you!


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Re: 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« Reply #6 on: May 18, 2018, 11:38:57 AM »
Good to hear about the side hustle that puts you in a better position as if at all possible you want to keep moving your incoming salary upwards or at least the same as to where you are currently if increasing expenses. As to worrying about too much cash, If your looking to be cash flow positive it will take some time currently -20k, and with wedding potentially -50k. Of course you can just concentrate on the minimum payments while saving for an RE property/wedding but the more obligations you carry the less wiggle room you'll have, as long as your comfortable and understand the risks sounds as if you'll do just fine.


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« Reply #7 on: May 23, 2018, 12:01:20 PM »
Yeah, I think I will stand for the "take each other's word for it" route once it becomes closer. No need to mingle finances before marriage. This could be a great pre-marital trust exercise lol

Overall, I do feel like I am trying to spread myself too thin with goals that all require lots of cash in the bank. I need to think about this in order of priorities which are ironically in the opposite order of what I originally posted as I thought of them:

1. Financial Independence – Throughout my life I want to stick to a constant positive trajectory in net worth at least hitting the milestones I set for myself. There will be expensive years, but I hope them to be overshadowed by the lucrative ones.
2. Real Estate Investing – Major goal and possible lifestyle improvement of managing this and not being chained to a desk. However, would not stretch too thin to achieve and put #1 in jeopardy or make a hasty bad decision.
3. “Average” Wedding – while the boyfriend pushes for a larger wedding I do feel that his own financial goals (primarily real estate/business ownership) will be put before a large wedding as well. 30k is a ton of money to spend on this even if each of our incomes doubled tomorrow.

I will be sure to update as well once employment/living expenses are figured out!


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« Reply #8 on: May 23, 2018, 12:27:41 PM »
Hi -
A few things...
You don't mention children in your future plans.  Is this a definite thing you and your partner have discussed and are on the same page? 
Facepunch alert.  It is YOUR wedding... you can do whatever you want.  Ride horses up the beach and recite your vows with only the moon as a witness. 
One thing about your money is you have to set boundaries for it.  If you don't want a large wedding and don't want to pay for one then don't have one. 
It is your life and your money own it. 
If your parents or your partner's parents want a big wedding, they can foot the bill. 
Also regarding student debt -punch it in the face for another year and knock it out. 


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Re: 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« Reply #9 on: May 24, 2018, 09:01:03 AM »
Hi @kingsbaker!

Yes, I/we would like kids one day but can’t see having a bunch...maybe 2?

The wedding thing really does need to be discussed further to come to a compromise. I don’t want to take away his dream of having a big day to celebrate with friends and family, but at the same time my disdain for the giant money/time suck should be recognized and appeased! I’m not going to press the issue as we’re both just enjoying dating life, but when it comes up I’m going to make sure an agreement is reached where I'm not just conceding to what is expected. If we do it at a standard venue with ~100 guests I could cut costs in every way imaginable and feel good about it.

Regarding student debt...I really, really want to pay them off now and if I had another year at home they would be gone by then. However, with this move and current income/expense uncertainty I feel like I should be focusing on saving until those things are figured out. My mom did say she’s giving us a $1,000 gift for the move, but she wants to get us a “nice” mattress which will eat up most of that unfortunately. Mentioning it since things like that would give me a push to make a large lump sum payment before the move knowing some of the expense is being covered.


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Re: 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« Reply #10 on: May 25, 2018, 01:54:24 PM »
Thanks for clarifying on the wedding being DFH's dream.  I would agree a compromise is in order and you should be willing to pay for part of it.  Also good on you for not teasing him mercilessly for being a pretty, pretty princess that wants a fairytale wedding.

Wedding, etc.:

There are tons of great ways to have an alternative wedding, spend less, and still be surrounded by all the people that really love you.  If I were you my goal would be to spend 12K and consider and gifts a bonus but not expected or relied upon.  Don't sell it as an "average" wedding, sell it as better/special/exercise in creative thinking.  If it wasn't a "wedding" you should be able to throw the mother of all blowout extravaganzas for 12K.

A few alternative thoughts (basically anytime you can substitute something generally nice (like a restaurant or a park) for something wedding specific (a hall) you will get something better, more memorable, and a boatload cheaper.
1) Rent a house somewhere picturesque and have a wedding/backyard bbq/pizza party/catered party (just tell the caterer it is a grad party to avoid the massive upcharge), buy your own liquor and hire a bartender, consider an ipod/phone and see if you can borrow some pro-audio speakers
2) Have a small wedding with close Family/best friends and follow up nights out to celebrate with Friends and more distant relatives.  Cheaper plus you actually get to talk to the people who are celebrating your marriage. 
3) Have a destination wedding/honeymoon.  That way you can be open invite but only the people who really love you will show up.  Still pricey per person.
4) Do it up with a traditional wedding at a non-traditional venue (a public park? your favorite restaurant) - somewhere you can buy your own liquor and pay very little for the location

Also consider an alternative to a traditional engagement ring.  It fishtails nicely with your lobbying for a non-traditional wedding.  Sapphires and rubies (corrundum) are still super hard and great everyday stones plus you can get identical lab created ones for super cheap.  If you are set on a diamond, manmade ones (still identical little balls of carbon) have been coming down in price a lot and are a nice choice ethically  Is there an option to get an heirloom?  You could be super non-traditional and get an engagement couch or TV.

Mom's 1K:
Help turn your Mom's 1K into an awesome gift with a little leg work.  Costco sells perfectly nice mattresses all rolled up in little boxes (if you are into memory foam) for $300.

Pair that with a little craigslisting and you can get a quality mattress, solid wood bedroom set, and solid wood kitchen table and chairs for $1K.  And your mom should be super pleased at all the wonderful stuff she bought you.

Regarding a cash on hand emergency fund, I will be a dissenting voice as I don't think you need much of one.  Maybe a couple months expenses, 3 tops ~4K-6K.  I wouldn't say this is an age thing (other than you may have lower expenses while younger) more a mustachian/dual income thing.  If you are living on less than one paycheck, you can take a job loss without dipping into savings.  If you are investing a bunch of money and there is suddenly an emergency sale on real estate you can always pull out some of your investments.  You are hard-working and clever so if a car breaks down you can (a) fix it yourself, (b) get a new to you car for under 5K, (c) bike/carpool to work for a while ...

I am giving you a facepunch for wanting an apartment with parking that lets you walk "places" but also gives you parking.  Kind of sounds like places = bars.

You also get a facepunch for listing cable, c'mahn, just get internet, and a high-def antenna, and one of netflix, amazon prime, whatever is cool now.  Ideally about $25 pp.

Lots of apartments come with free gyms.

You can do better than $60 a month for a phone - check out posts/threads on Google-fi, republic wireless, even T-mobile and Sprint should be cheaper.

Utilities - Try to get an apartment that comes with free gas and water (they tend to be better deals overall)

$200 seems like a lot for going out to eat.   MMM has a blog somewhere about pre-partying/eating so you can still go out and get something with friends but keep it cheap.

Overall, it really isn't a bad budget at all for a goal of FI in your 40s, especially if your salary grows along the way.  But in my experience, I really liked my work in my mid 20s and now in my mid 30s I am pretty over it.


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« Reply #11 on: May 27, 2018, 08:36:30 AM »
Hi @MustacheAnxiety! You’ve given me a lot to consider here!

Re: Weddings –

I LOVE the idea of renting out a home and having a large party there with catering, maybe a BBQ/smoker theme along with apps and a bartender. Sounds like a lot more fun to me than awkwardly dancing in a reception hall. On the other hand, a destination wedding would be ideal so that the guest list gets cut for us since many invitees wouldn’t be attending. I will definitely be suggesting these!

Re: Engagement Rings –

We’ve discussed this briefly and I drove home the point that whatever ring it is DO NOT FINANCE IT. Spend whatever you feel compelled to, but no monthly payments! Diamond is pretty much a non-negotiable for me, but price needs to be reasonable. I found a ring I LOVE for 2,900 USD which I would feel comfortable with. The only thing I have working against me is that his friends are buying 15k rings on credit and he may feel the need to spend more because of them. But I truly do not even want a ring that expensive, it's insanity.

Re: Mom’s 1k –

I will bring this up with her as it gets closer since I agree an $800 mattress and box spring set is a waste. I’ll frame it in a way so she sees how many things that could buy instead of basically just buying a boring mattress :)

Re: Cash on hand

Agree on this. I think keeping 4-6k in my bank savings account would cover any medical/car expenses (had both this month, unfortunately) or serve as a cushion for monthly expenses if needed. I feel like as long as I maintain that amount and keep growing assets otherwise, I shouldn’t find myself scrambling for funds.

Re: Budget…Drumroll

LOL all I want is to be able to walk to a park, a take-out place/restaurant and be able to walk to buy a coffee. $600 would be a hard maximum as we’ve been seeing places that would bring each person’s share to $450 or $500. Spoiler: the cheaper places we've seen would not cover utilities or have a gym, so that may be a wash between the two.

I am going to blame cable on the boyfriend since if I was moving to my own place I would only have internet and Netflix and be fine as I did in college. However, being an obsessive basketball/baseball/football fan having cable is pretty much non-negotiable for him. He goes further to buy the on-demand sports packages through the networks, but I will not be paying for that. This is basically his one splurge, so I can accept that, and I get to enjoy watching Bravo TV 😊

Based on some companies I am interviewing with the phone may be completely paid for (current company gives $50 a month reimbursement). Having good cell service is required for my job, so I will need to look further into cheaper options if not covered by the company.

Hoping and praying utilities and gym would not be an expense!

200 should be the max for entertainment for the month – if we see a movie, tickets to a local event, dining out. I am going to talk to him about keeping a 1x per week max on eating out of any kind as a couple (between take-out and dining out). This should help expand my cooking repertoire as well! I plan on both of us bringing leftovers to work daily.

Thank you for all of those great ideas!


  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
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Re: 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« Reply #12 on: May 30, 2018, 10:24:00 AM »
Just to pop in real quick re: weddings. Everyone is unique, I just loved how we did ours and like to share whenever I can.

We had the wedding we wanted, outside at my parent's place bordering on the national park with the 30 people we really wanted there. We provided BBQ and had our friends who were great cooks bring sides (sort of a directed pot luck). Friends were happy to bring a dish instead of a gift and we were thrilled to only spend $1500 for the wedding, quit our jobs and do a 4 month round the world trip for about 25k all in. The wedding is great day but MAN that trip changed our life and was probably the best part of our marriage to date. It's been two years ago and we still talk about it almost daily.

It's about the marriage, not the wedding.

Will some people be annoyed? Will you feel pressured to do something else? Sure. But my friend just got married, she, her husband and her parents spent 60k+ and there were still people who were offended they weren't invited or thought this or that should be different.


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**UPDATE** 24, Moving Soon, Share Your Wisdom/Facepunches!
« Reply #13 on: August 24, 2018, 01:15:26 PM »
Update time!

Thank you all for your input on my situation. It’s been an exciting/stressful/fun few months. I thought I’d share an update of how my life is set to look in this transition:

Job – After interviewing and getting offers I wasn’t completely thrilled with, I asked and was approved to work remote full-time in my new city at the same salary. Weight has been lifted of my shoulders and this will make the transition MUCH easier. I’ll re-assess the job front short after moving next month though, where the search would be 1,000x easier.

Total Income – 55,000 annual/3,078 monthly net

Living expenses –
Rent – 387 (my half of rent for a 2br house in a town with good public transit)
Cable/internet – 56 (113/month for cable locked in for 2 years. Not great but not terrible considering I love TV and bf needs network sports)
Other utilities – 100 (estimate for my share of electric/gas/water)
Student Loan - 390
Phone - 50
Groceries - 200 - may be going over this as working from home will mean lots of cooking and eating at home more than I normally would
Gas for car– 50
auto ins    - 111
Eating Out- 200
Gifts/Random Shopping – 100
Renters Ins – 10 (estimate as this is TBD)
Gym? -  30 (estimate – I think I’ll need to join a gym to get out of the house and have some human interaction)

Total Expenses – 1,684

Costs for furnishing the house are projected to come to about 3,000 for the both of us which I’m pleased with. We're at the halfway point!

Overall, I’m happy with the situation, and should have a lifestyle that allows plenty of monthly savings while still enjoying life a little.

Thanks again!!