Author Topic: Case Study - Where can I improve?  (Read 1525 times)


  • Stubble
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Case Study - Where can I improve?
« on: May 14, 2016, 01:37:57 PM »
Hello all, I have been reading the MMM blog ravenously for the last few days and it is extremely encouraging!

My situation:
-single parent of one school-age child, living in Canada, working full-time.
-money coming in each month: $3700

My goal right now is to get my student loan paid off in the next 22 months - my balance is $49,000. To meet this goal, I am putting $2250 each month (60% of take home) toward my loan.

I am spending $1450/month:
-$838 rent (includes utilities)
-$57 cell phone and internet
-$250 groceries
-$39 bus (I walk to work, but take the bus when bringing home groceries and taking my child to/from sports)
-$122 kid stuff (allowance, occasional sitter, school expenses, field trips, sports fees/equipment)
-$15 laundry (coin washer, I hang to dry)
-$20 gifts (mainly birthday and Christmas for the kid)
-$85 travel (includes car rental for visits to out-of-town family and a couple of mini vacations)
-$24 other (clothes, stamps, vitamins, medication, lightbulbs, Tupperware, batteries, etc)

Any suggestions or feedback?
« Last Edit: May 15, 2016, 06:08:33 AM by Alf91 »


  • Magnum Stache
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  • Posts: 2884
Re: Case Study - Where can I improve?
« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2016, 02:17:02 PM »
Welcome to the forums :)

Looks to me like you are doing extremely well. Are you claiming all child tax credits and transit credits and such that you may be entitled to?

If you pay off your SL and maintain that 60% Savings rate, plus any income increases, you'll be in excellent shape!

For suggestions, I would just suggest that you look into free family activities so you can keep up that high savings rate while still having fun.

You might be able to whittle a bit off your grocery budget, but depending where in CA you are and with working a full-time job and being a single mom it might not be worth it to pinch the pennies instead of spending time with your kid.


  • Magnum Stache
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  • Posts: 3529
  • Location: Chicago, IL
Re: Case Study - Where can I improve?
« Reply #2 on: May 14, 2016, 02:34:34 PM »
The only thing I can think of is what's the interest rate(s) on your SLs? If they're 6+, it might be worth considering to refi them to lower the rate and help a little on the repayments. Otherwise, that's a tight budget :)

Keep up the good work!


  • Handlebar Stache
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  • Posts: 2022
Re: Case Study - Where can I improve?
« Reply #3 on: May 14, 2016, 02:59:39 PM »
You're doing great! If you can keep up that 60% savings rate once the loan is paid off you'll be FI in no time. The only suggestion I would have is to make sure you're capturing any retirement match your employer offers. This may not be how it works in Canada, but in the US employers often will only contribute an amount equal to what you contribute (up to some percentage of income) and that's an instant 100% return on investment, so definitely worth taking a little longer on the loans to get.