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Thread: Cutting cost

  1. #1

    Question Cutting cost

    Anyone have any advice to give me for living on ones own, money wise? From my research I need 10 grand to move out. and it's from 1500 a month to live off of. Meaning I will only be able to live for 6 full months not counting my massive food needs and moving cost in general.

    Ideas I've had

    1. Work on my cooking - lower food cost and maybe eat a little healthier. (Might have to work on slowing down my metabolism)

    2. Cut power cost by keeping things unplugged when not needed.

    3. Limit myself in the shower. Go from 40 minutes to 5 to 10 minutes at a time. (I like showers okay)

    4. Cut down on crazy or unneeded item(s) buys. (Diapers are not on this list <They are a de-stress buy>)

    5. Downgrade my cell phone. I really shouldn't need something to advanced.

    Anything I'm missing.

  2. #2


    1. You could live off two minute noodles or fast food, fast food is quite cheap compared to cooking your own food, I used to just eat fast food for weeks on end during high school cause it was cheaper than eating healthy. (used to have KFC for breakfast and tea) (my ex did the same) was common to do in high school. Though your cheapest options aren't the healthiest sadly.

    2. instead of using a TV you could use netflix, instead of a desktop you could use a laptop, some computers use 500+ watts of power, TV's use quite a bit too (70 watts but should be fine). You could use power saving lightglobes and use power efficient devices, in Australia we have this star systems on devices. Instead of air-conditioning you could use fans.

    3. Using diapers instead of the toilet saves a lot of water too.

    4. That is reasonable. (but if you want to save water.. consider the diaper option

    5. That is reasonable, you can get a dumb phone or a basic phone which only can be used for SMS and calls, nothing advanced.

    That's just some things I wanted to add.

    If I get the job I'm applying for I'm pretty much going to be in the same shoes in a couple months, so I wish you luck

    Oh since you're in the united states I presume, you could opt for health insurance that should save you money down the line, just keep that in mind if anything may happen in future.

  3. #3


    I'm using my Surface lately, plus I've been watching mostly YouTube and Netflix lately. As for fast food it's costing me 3 grand to 4 grand a year. I need a better option.

  4. #4


    I'd focus on getting your food budget down. Shelter and transport are usually the other big areas for cutting spending, but are much harder to change.

    People joke about "rice and beans", but if you learn to cook you can actually make that very palatable with the right spices and maybe some extra veggies. It's dirt cheap and healthy (assuming you start from dried beans and use whole grain rice).

    Some other cheap and reasonably healthy (and filling) food stuffs:

    - Eggs
    - Bread (in moderation)
    - Potatoes (again, in moderation)

    And this is all stuff that you can use to make reasonably decent meals with some basic cooking skills. Beyond that requires an investment in time to learn more advanced cooking. Learning to de-bone a chicken yourself is a major money saver, because whole chickens are way cheaper than buying pre-portioned cuts of meat. If you learn to make your own stock from the remains, you can also make really good soup for next to nothing. You can also invest in a vac sealer and a deep freeze (if you don't have one) and make a bunch in advance.

  5. #5


    If you have ready access to good thrift stores, look for a bread machine. At least in my neck of the woods, they are donated with fair frequency and if you actually use it, you get great bread dirt cheap. My folks got me onto that one; they buy a roughly $5-10 machine and use it until it dies, which is usually at least a year and then replace it.

    If you have the space, a slow cooker works the same but you might need to be more choosy to get a good one that you could get full use of.

    I've also found that my Costco membership pays for itself pretty easily just in gas but that's because there's one near where I do most of my work. Without that alignment of stars, it's not such a clear win if you live alone. There are still some good prices on non-perishable items if you have a little space.

  6. #6


    My wife and just rely on our Internet for or TV. Netflix is nice as well as having Amazon Prime. If you want a "land line" you could get a MagicJack--you pay not that much for a while year of service and when you buy the device new, you get your first year as part of it. We have also relied on pre-paid phones (Tracfone).

  7. #7


    For phone service I use Freedom Pop. Paid $29.99 for the phone about 3 years ago, and haven't paid anything since. Can get the free plan that has 200 minutes, 500 texts, and 500mb every month.

  8. #8


    When I first moved out I only ate out once a week as a treat. I would make hamburger Helper for dinner and have it for lunch and dinner again the next day. Yum!

    Breakfast was a bowl of cereal or Pop Tarts. Lunch was PB&J with chips.

    Watch the soda and alcohol. Can be expensive.
    Last edited by Scaramouche; 20-Oct-2017 at 14:16. Reason: Added breakfast and lunch

  9. #9


    I have just recently talked to a guy, that rented a small office for twice as cheap as you would rent a flat. If I were struggling with cash this what I would do. Of course, you can live in an offices permanently, so you have to be a bit of street smart here. For example, you can go work at nights somewhere and sleep during the day, once you rent an office and you spent a lot of time there nobody would ever think, that you are using it to sleep. If you need a shower, get a cheap gym subscription and just go there everyday - start working out, if you don't have training scheduled just hit cardio and take a shower. Learn writing and move from US to Cambodia or Bangladesh and save money with your US salary. Plenty of things, be creative bro.

  10. #10


    While I applaud your conservation efforts, the cost of electricity probably isn't a substantial part of your budget.

    FOOD most likely is, especially if you eat out now. Learn how to cook. Eat in and shop carefully. Pack your lunch if you go to school or work rather than buying out.
    Cutting back cell phone is a good idea.
    If you have cable or Sat TV, drop that. Use the internet for your entertainment.

    Think about your diaper purchases. When I got laid off, I switched to cloth (I already had them) and plastic pants. This pretty much let me where 24/7 without buying anything but some laundry soap.

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