Overall Spending Motto: ”I am happiest when I spend less, collect less, and focus on fun experiences.”
Frugal Joys: Loves Salvation Army for clothing and just got an unworn wool J.Crew jacket. She also enjoys cooking from scratch– says it’s “delicious, healthy, cheap, fun, not as time consuming as you think.”
Transit: Walks around campus and friends will drive her when necessary. If they do, she splits gas with them.
Food: Loves making fresh meals with delicious ingredients and dines out on weekends for 2 meals ($100 total a week). Thinks farmers markets are great and if you shop around the different booths, you’ll find vegetables and meats that are reasonably priced.
Drinks: “I usually don’t drink.”
Shopping: Shops for necessities at Target, CVS and the local health food store. Buys most clothing at Salvation Army these days because she lives by a nice one full of designer pieces. This savvy spender also loves shopping in her own closet. Sound familiar?
Gym: For her, the school gym membership is the only option and it costs $145 a year. She advises others to pick a gym that’s close to home or work.
Apartment: Doesn’t have cable – says “people still use that?” Ha! Cleans her apartment with basic cleaning products and pays for internet.
Travel: Uses Hipmunk.com to book flights. Due to the flexibility in her schedule she enjoys big cost savings. Also recommends AirBnB for travelling well while feeling like a local without paying a huge price.
Saving / Retirement Saving: Has a Roth IRA and will max out her 401-K match when she starts her new job. Loves her Roth IRA for the great future benefits. “I pay the tax now on my income while I am in a low tax bracket and will take all of that principal and compound interest out tax-free when I retire! I also pay special attention to my tax returns to make sure I get as much as possible.”
Debt: Tries to minimize debt and save as much as possible at this point in her life. For a credit card she has the Bank of America Travel Rewards card because she already has accounts with BofA and found their online portal and ease of use to be a big plus. This card also has no transaction or conversion fees abroad which was great for her Study Abroad last semester. She only uses this card for small purchases so that her utilization rate stays low so she can build credit. Amazing!
Other: “I believe that spending money on valuable experiences is really worth it. This could mean attending a concert, buying a new book, taking ballroom dancing classes, or a booking a flight to see friends/family. I find that I get much more out of a $25 concert than a new shirt.”