Where would you cut?

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-08-2009
Where would you cut?
110
Mon, 03-04-2013 - 12:19pm

With all this talk of cutting budgets in the air, I am wondering what options people have considered if their families were forced to cut expenses.  What changes in your spending would you make if you had to cut your spending by thirty percent?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-14-2011
Mon, 03-04-2013 - 2:41pm

Jams, your a student, right?  So, I assume that your husband's income is your main source of income?  What if he came home this evening and told you that he lost his job.  What things would you immediately stop spending your money on (or reallocate)?

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-12-2005
Mon, 03-04-2013 - 2:50pm
We do the math on this periodically, to make sure we don't get ourselves into spending at a rate we could not sustain if one of us quit working for any reason. My income is about 35% of our total household income. If I stopped working, the first thing we would cut back on is obviously child care. Then drop 401k contributions to 10%, and decrease savings significantly. If we took a 30% cut that did not allow for a SAHP, we would have to switch from a nanny to daycare center, with our schedules adjusted to only need child care 3 days a week. Then we would cut cable and data plans, vacations, savings, and charitable contributions. We are pretty frugal as it is. I cut everyone else's hair, do my own eyebrows and color. We shop sales, wear things until they are worn out, drive our cars long after the last payment, have short commutes, and spend less than $200/month eating out. Vacations, savings, gifts, child care, and charity take up my take-home pay.
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-20-2013
Mon, 03-04-2013 - 3:12pm

bordwithyou wrote:
<p>With all this talk of cutting budgets in the air, I am wondering what options people have considered if their families were forced to cut expenses.  What changes in your spending would you make if you had to cut your spending by thirty percent?</p>

There is an awful lot I could cut from the budget. I'd cancel my Massage Envy membership, we'd stop eating out once a week, we'd rent movies instead of going to the movies, and summer camp would probably be Camp Grandma's House. ;) I'd plant a garden instead of going to the Farmer's Market every week.

Shaking my head at the things grown women get their panties in a wad about.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-01-2013
Mon, 03-04-2013 - 3:43pm
Hmmm...this would be hard as we have cut down our budget a lot already. I have gotten many bills as low as possible. I think we would just go and look for more work opportunities to get the 30% back.
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-14-2011
Mon, 03-04-2013 - 3:48pm

So what if you (or your husband) lost your job TODAY?  What would you cut immediately reduce your spending while you are out there looking for other working opportunities?

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-01-2013
Mon, 03-04-2013 - 4:04pm
Well, we would use savings and unemployment until he found another job. Unless it was a dire situation where we could not pay our main bills or eat we would continue to do what we normally do. We don't have a one income family so there would be another income coming in also.
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-04-2009
Mon, 03-04-2013 - 4:08pm

I wish it were as easy as simply cutting my expenses 30%.  I'm staring straight down the barrel of having my income cut 20% for the last third of the year.  Possibly sooner.  And it could become even worse if Congress doesn't avert the shutdown scheduled for the end of this month.  AT that point, I'll be obligated to work for free until they finally pass funding for the last 6 months.

Should it happen, I'll likely have to take a loan from my TSP to cover expenses in the short term.

For the 20% income cut, I will probably cut out the cable internet entirely, and simply use my iphone's personal hotspot feature. I have two loans that will be paid off in full the end of that month, so that expense will cease and I will take advantage of the day off during the week to start and cultivate a garden this summer.  I may end up investing in a rain water runoff system (in case anyone is wondering if I'll be able to afford my water bill, but I"ve been planning to look into one within the next few years anyway, so this may be the impetus to push the timeline up a bit.)

************

Kitty

"If you can't annoy somebody with what you write, I think there's little point in writing."-- Kingsley Amis, British novelist, 1971 t .

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-01-2013
Mon, 03-04-2013 - 4:12pm
That is one advantage of my area, the water bill is CHEAP. lol. It costs me about $30-40 every 3 months :)
iVillage Member
Registered: 01-08-2009
Mon, 03-04-2013 - 4:12pm

rosenylund wrote:
Hmmm...this would be hard as we have cut down our budget a lot already. I have gotten many bills as low as possible. I think we would just go and look for more work opportunities to get the 30% back.

So it sounds as if you are living very close to the wire, if you could not cut expenses by thirty percent.  And yet you have been excoriating that frugal family all morning for living so close to the wire.

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-24-2010
Mon, 03-04-2013 - 4:14pm

lifespeachy wrote:
<p>So what if you (or your husband) lost your job TODAY?  What would you cut immediately reduce your spending while you are out there looking for other working opportunities?</p>

So I just watched the movie Company Men this weekend.  Some guys get laid off from a big corporation who were making pretty high incomes.  When the Ben Affleck character gets laid off his wife immediately goes into survivial mode--wants to start back working again taking shifts (nurse) and cut expenses.  Husband is in denial saying and just says he'll find a job.  Eventually they have to cut the club dues (country club/golf) sell the house, sell the porsche he drives, and they move in with is parents.  Anyway, it takes him awhile to get to that point, basically when all their money is gone,lol.

“Clearly," said Arthur,"you're an idiot- but you're our kind of idiot. Come on.” 
― Markus ZusakThe Book Thief

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