I live comfortably in a resort town on $35,000 a year - here's how I do it
Business Insider Contributor
May 4, 2018, 02:50 IST
Only spend what you can afford.
For Business Insider's "Real Money" series, a 23-year-old journalist shares a week of spending on a $35,000 salary on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.
She usually eats at home and loves a good (free) workout, but this week spent money on bills and plane tickets to visit family.
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My dad taught me to live within my means.
I take that lesson pretty seriously and never spend more than I can afford. This can be challenging on my budget - I make $35,000 a year - but by spending carefully I make it work.AdvertisementI live a pretty thrifty lifestyle and while my income doesn't allow for a lot of saving, I still try to save a couple hundred dollars and contribute to my 401k every month. I love traveling, so I also try to put aside some cash every month so I can buy plane tickets to go visit my friends and family and explore new cities.
My boyfriend and I share the expense of living at our resort apartment on Hilton Head Island in South Carolina, which keeps my rent affordable. The resort is extremely quiet in the winter and we get to enjoy the vacation amenities like hot tubs and tennis courts regularly, especially during the off season for tourism. On days when I don't spend any money, I'm still able to enjoy indoor workouts, swimming, or a friendly game of tennis, which is an added bonus.
Here's a closer look at what I spent over the course of a recent week:
My boyfriend and I split our $1,150 rent evenly, and every month I pay gas, car insurance, and a gym membership.
I take home $479 a week from my $35,000 salary, and I keep my spending within what I can afford.
On Friday, I woke up to a notification that $29.95 was charged to my Discover card by Blue Apron.
Saturday, I go on a five-mile run along the beach, and head to the grocery store.
I wake up on Sunday, planning to head to the beach for another run, but the couch potato in me decides to make a cup of Earl Gray tea and watch a couple episodes of "This is Us."
After a free personal training session through my gym Monday morning, I shower at the gym and eat a peanut butter, jelly and banana sandwich on the 15-minute drive to work.
Instead of driving to the gym on Tuesday, I go to the gym in our apartment complex and jump on a stationary bike for about 45 minutes.
It's Valentine's Day Wednesday, and even though we decided not to give gifts this year, I feel like I should do a little something.
On Thursday I force myself out of bed at 5 a.m. and go to my second personal training session of the week.