Author Topic: Estimating Income Change When Kids Leave Home  (Read 1247 times)

unknown1961

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Estimating Income Change When Kids Leave Home
« on: February 07, 2018, 12:50:08 PM »
I'm laying out my family's monthly average expenses with a kid at home. And I want to get a rough estimate of how much those expenses will decrease once he leaves home. I'm hoping someone might have a ballpark percentage decrease a couple can expect when kids fly the coop. I have one trusted source tell me that he experienced a 40% decrease in gas. This seems reasonable in my situation because my son drives 25 miles each way to school, and has activities on weeknights and weekends. So there is one expense that will go down drastically. But how about groceries, misc. expenses, utilities, etc. I'm not looking for specifics but a rule of thumb in order to get an idea of how much spare money my wife and I might have to travel or plug into savings.
For context, My wife and I are instructors at a local university and she has a military pension. We have two kids in college and one a sophomore in high school. I'm trying to look 3 or 4 years down the road when the older two are out of college and my youngest is in college (which will be taken care of with college savings).
Thanks!

Pigeon

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Re: Estimating Income Change When Kids Leave Home
« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2018, 06:37:15 PM »
I think that's going to depend on a number of individual factors.

I'm trying to figure out the same thing.  For us, the big expenses are car and medical insurance.  Our kids pay for most of their incidentals out of summer and vacation jobs. 

lbmustache

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Re: Estimating Income Change When Kids Leave Home
« Reply #2 on: February 07, 2018, 08:26:29 PM »
Like the above poster mentioned, hard to say without specifics.

If you have boys, I'd honestly expect a major reduction in groceries. When my brother and I (I'm a woman) left, I think my parents had their bill cut in half, maybe even a bit more because they always ordered an extra pizza on pizza night and got extra food if we ordered take out.

Misc. expenses: what are these? What do you buy your kids? Toilet paper and toiletries? Clothes and shoes?

Utilities: not a huge reduction, unless your kids are home 24/7 or doing utility-heavy things (multiple showers, tv on all day).

Insurances: obviously a big expense and huge savings once that's no longer on you.


middo

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Re: Estimating Income Change When Kids Leave Home
« Reply #3 on: February 07, 2018, 09:46:08 PM »
We find electricity usage drops about 30% when our son goes back to uni.  He tends to use chargers and lights a lot.  He also runs the air conditioner during the day when we are at work, over summer.  It all adds up.

Our water usage drops hugely when our daughter is not home, about 25%  (including retic to garden).  She showers a lot.

Gas usage changes too, about a 25% drop as well, as gas is hot water.

Overall, I would think you should look at his usage of things, what is going to change?  Does he use a lot of electricity or not?  Does his room need heating/cooling?  Will that change?
 

Catbert

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Re: Estimating Income Change When Kids Leave Home
« Reply #4 on: February 08, 2018, 11:47:41 AM »
ARe you older two still at home?  Or away at college?  If away, what reductions do you notice when they are gone?  That should give you a hint.

unknown1961

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Re: Estimating Income Change When Kids Leave Home
« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2018, 11:56:54 AM »
Thanks all. Those percentages about the gas and utilities help. That's what I'm trying to find to get an estimate of what we'll save in terms of expenses. I didn't want to do a line item review for the past 24 months, but was hoping some people had general percentages about decreases they experienced or calculated or found from research. The experiences posted above about gas, utilities, food, etc. are very helpful. Thanks!