Author Topic: Where can I cut costs?  (Read 4112 times)

meteor

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Where can I cut costs?
« on: January 16, 2015, 11:39:55 PM »
I just ran a report on my top expenses for 2014. I spent $35,000 and I don't even own a car and buy all my clothes at the goodwill.  I don't even have cable. House is PAID FOR. It seems almost of my costs are health related. And the utilities are almost $5,000 just for MY HALF (I split them with someone).  We don't waste energy, it's just expensive in the bay area.  Property taxes alone are $400+ a month for a 900 sq foot ugly bungalow we bought for 1/2 price.  Health insurance is a nightmare. Even if I go low deductible, I end up paying more, so I actually do better with the upper end Kaiser plan I've been grandfathered into. The other plans here are pretty crappy.  My friend got the high deductible blue cross and it still cost him $15,000 when he was in the hospital for 3 days.  I also go to the dental school sometimes to save money. Just my basic cost of living  adds up to 29,000.  I know I could cut back on food, but really I can't understand how other people live for $20,000

$8,677 Dentist (root canals, crowns, implant. I still have 4 teeth than have problems)
$6,780 Health Insurance
$2,271 Health copay/meds
$2,403 Utilities (internet, electric, garbage, water)
$2,500 Property taxes
$4,970 Groceries
$1,562 Restaurants
$29,163 TOTAL
« Last Edit: January 17, 2015, 11:18:54 AM by meteor »

kathrynd

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Re: Where can I cut costs?
« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2015, 12:37:46 AM »
Dentist is finished now, or do you have more week to be done?

Taking out the property taxes, how much are the utilities (for your share)

$125 week for grocery/restaurant for 1 person is a LOT..Consider bringing it down to $50.
Cut it down $10 each week, until you get to $50. This will give you time to consider alternatives, to what you are spending money on.
It is a learning process.

I don't know about health costs, because I am Canadian...and it's different.

Hope this helps

wtjbatman

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Re: Where can I cut costs?
« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2015, 08:09:03 AM »
$9000 in dentist costs isn't a regular expense for most people, no matter where you live. Something is going on there. I'm sure it's absolutely necessary dental work, so I'm not saying you just stop going to the dentist or anything. But I imagine you don't have $9k in dental costs every single year. Assuming your work is done and that is cut out of your budget next year, what do you know, you're pretty close to living on $20k.

sunshine

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Re: Where can I cut costs?
« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2015, 08:19:28 AM »
Groceries and restaurants jump out at me. We had no problem feeding a family of 4 on  less than $600 a month. With the kids at college Hubby and I now average $300 to $350 for a pretty lux grain free diet including booze.  I have no idea on those dental costs. We never had a year that high even paying cash for braces.

meteor

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Re: Where can I cut costs?
« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2015, 11:06:36 AM »
I edited the original post to answer your questions: My dental costs are for root canals/crowns and unfortunately they failed and had to be redone 2 or 3 times because they became infected.  I have lost 5 teeth over the last 5 years because of this problem. Dental work is incredibly expensive.  Where I live a root canal and crown for 1 tooth is easily $3,000I finally decided to get an implant this year (that's $4,000 of dental)  I even go to the dental school sometimes for routine work.

Regarding taxes, the house taxes are about half of all house costs: about $2,500 for my half.   But thank god I got the house at 1/2 price because my neighbor is paying $12,000 a year for property taxes. ( Property taxes are based on purchase price).

I would love to see someone's food budget/shopping list.  I'm a vegetarian so I don't even buy meat.  I don't know why my costs are so high.  I'm not even a wine drinker.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2015, 11:17:32 AM by meteor »

LadyStache

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Re: Where can I cut costs?
« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2015, 01:42:36 PM »
Medical tourism
Consider using Costco or Sam's Club for some of your grocery shopping

BPA

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Re: Where can I cut costs?
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2015, 01:46:04 PM »
Move from the Bay area at least after FIRE if not before?


APowers

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Re: Where can I cut costs?
« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2015, 02:00:07 PM »
I would love to see someone's food budget/shopping list.  I'm a vegetarian so I don't even buy meat.  I don't know why my costs are so high.  I'm not even a wine drinker.

Here's mine. Family of four. Most all of our meals could be pretty easily adjusted to be vegetarian.

MayDay

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Re: Where can I cut costs?
« Reply #8 on: January 17, 2015, 03:38:12 PM »
Vegetarian, mostly organic here. Family of four.

First is just cutting out the eating out, or at least adopt a strict upper limit per month.

Buy beans and grains in bulk. Shop around local co-op type stores, bulk order clubs (UNFI) and Costco.

Cook from scratch.

Eat whatever fresh stuff is seasonal (ie cheap) and for the rest do frozen (organic frozen veggies are cheap at Costco).

Limit purchasrs of snack stuff and individual serving stuff.

Make a batch of cheap soup/stew and freeze in individual portions for lunches and quick dinners.

kathrynd

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Re: Where can I cut costs?
« Reply #9 on: January 17, 2015, 08:55:56 PM »


I would love to see someone's food budget/shopping list.  I'm a vegetarian so I don't even buy meat.  I don't know why my costs are so high.  I'm not even a wine drinker.

This just a sample list and menu, for 1 person
It is for meat eaters....

 
*  1.29  - 900g bag of rolled oats
1.99-  bag potatoes
*  1.29   bag  onions
1.99   bag apples
2.80   doz eggs
2.00    2 loaf bread
1.29    margarine
6.00    chicken
1.29    bag carrots
1.00    suede (rutabaga)
1.00    parsnip
2.00 - 2l  full cream milk (dilute with 2 l  water)
3.00-  500g ground mince (ground beef)
*  .95  -  S. .R. flour (if you use regular flour, you will need baking powder)
*  1.18 - 1 kg raw sugar (or white)
1.02 - 185g tuna
-------------------------------
$30.09  w/$4.71 not needed for next week and a chicken breast left over.
Breakfast
porridge
pancakes
muffins
eggs
toast
french toast
 
Lunch
tuna sandwich
chicken sandwich
egg sandwich
left overs
 
supper
chicken and veg x 2
meatloaf x4
chicken soup x 4
 
Freeze breast  for next week.