Brick Home by Flickrite Paper Cat

One Less Person at Home – Will Expenses Go Down?

Brick Home by Flickrite Paper Cat

Last Tuesday our youngest child moved out on his own.  He went apartment hunting the previous week, fell in love with the first place he looked at and put down a deposit.

He’s been talking about moving out every now and then for the past 2 years.  He would sit down, calculate a budget and decide that it was more economical to live at home.  This was fine with Mr. Accountability and myself.  We both had troubled childhoods and leaving home was not pleasant and definitely not when we were comfortable with it, so we wanted to provide that for our children.

I’ve said in a post before, “…you can analyze things and plan and figure it all out, but sometimes when it’s time, it’s time.”   AJ decided it was time, the final straw being his car breaking down repeatedly.

He decided he needed to be closer to his job, and made plans to move to the big city.

I’m curious to see if our expenses will go down.  Here are the areas which could be affected:

  • Groceries. AJ was buying most of his own food, but he did still partake in some family meals, and also used things like butter, mayonnaise, spices, etc.
  • Electricity.  It will be interesting to see if the bill decreases.  AJ had a habit of doing laundry during on-peak hours when the electricity was higher.  He also worked from home with several computers and three monitors.
  • Water. Mr. Accountability thinks our water bill will go down.  We’ll have to see about that. It’s not like AJ drank 500 gallons of water each month or took thirty minute showers. He only did one or two loads of laundry each week and I think the washer holds about 30 gallons.
  • Auto Insurance.  Although AJ was paying his own auto insurance, so it won’t really affect us that much.
  • AAA. I was paying for Triple A for AJ and he will need to get coverage himself now, if he wants to keep it.

Two things that have gone up.  AJ and I were splitting the cost of the Internet, which I now have to pay by myself, and we were also sharing his Amazon Prime account.  I have already upgraded.   I save time and money by shopping at Amazon.   It is so much easier to find what I’m looking for and have it shipped, rather than to make calls and drive. For example, one of the vitamins I take regularly I now have shipped on a subscription and it comes automatically to me each month.

I will be taking his bedroom and converting it into my office.  I am looking forward to that, and I should be able to consider that room a business expense on our income taxes.

I was not prepared for the emotional upheaval that would result in AJ moving out, indeed my heart felt broken.  I have read dozens of parenting books but I had no idea “Empty Nest Syndrome” meant “heart broken in pieces”.   In googling the term I learned that parents actually go through a grieving process as their children leave home, so that was reassuring to know that the feelings I was having were normal and to be expected.

I’m very proud of him, and glad that he is mature enough to make this move onto his own.  This is what is supposed to happen.  Young people eventually leave home.  It’s a sign we succeeded as parents.

How was it when you left home?  Was it a happy or sad time?  Have you ever had a child leave home?

 

 

 

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10 thoughts on “One Less Person at Home – Will Expenses Go Down?

  1. You may be surprised at how little electricity computers use.

    My home computer has a max usage of 85 watts and an idle usage off 11 watts. Even if you’re actively using a computer, it’s often not anywhere near the max usage (web browsing and word processing is not heavy use, for example). Maybe an average of 50 watts during active use, plus about 75 watts for the monitor = 125 watts for an hour of active use. At 10 cents per kWh, that’d be a cost of about 1.25 cents/hour to run my computer and monitor. That seems pretty cheap, considering the functionality that it provides 🙂

    When I left for college at 18, I was pretty much on my own. I stayed at home after my freshman year of college and also during breaks, but I was never really reliant on my parents after that (was 100% responsible for college costs – they really couldn’t have afforded to help).

    It was a happy time to leave home. I was anxious to find my own way in the world.
    Kosmo recently posted..Why Is The Book Always Better Than The Movie?My Profile

    [Reply]

    Mrs. Accountability Reply:

    Hi Kosmo, well I won’t get my hopes up too high. It would be nice to see the electricity bill come down a little bit. Sounds like you had a good experience leaving the nest. 🙂

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  2. I’m about to leave home at the end of August and in all honesty I’m terrified. It means that I’m finally totally independent. I am normally a level headed sort of guy but this is really freaking me out! Any advice or tips are welcome.

    [Reply]

    Mrs. Accountability Reply:

    Mr. Money Banks – first of all congratulations!! I believe it’s normal to be a little freaked out, it’s a huge responsibility to be out on one’s own. Kudos to you for having a plan, instead of dashing out impulsively or worse yet having your parents kick you out because you’re 45. 😉 I’m sure you have your budget all figured out. Do your best to find an apartment or housing that does not exceed 25% of your gross take home pay. Don’t forget the little things like money to do laundry, household cleaning products and clothing. Be sure your net income covers everything. That’s certainly not a complete list, but I hope it will help you to get started. Last but not least – be nice to your parents. This is hard on them – as exciting as it is for you, they are losing your presence in their lives, so be aware of that as you go out on your own. Call your mom at least once a week. I hope this helps. Mrs. A

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  3. I left home for college and finally left for good after I graduated college. It was a happy time and I did pretty good for myself. I think my parents definitely saved a ton of money because they totally cut me off except for the cell phone bill which I just have to pay my line fees on.
    Lance recently posted..My First Job: Lessons LearnedMy Profile

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  4. Wow, what an interesting time in your life! We have a child who lives at college, but hasn’t moved out on a full time basis. It is a big step – I don’t remember a lot of emotion either way when I moved out so it must have been the right time!
    Kris recently posted..CPA-Exam-ResourcesMy Profile

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  5. I am new to your blog, am curious, how old is your son? Did you charge him rent to be living at home?

    Our son is almost 20, working full time and my husband and I can not agree on the issue of rent. I believe we should be charging him rent, to help teach him responsibilty and budgeting and such. But my husband does not agree. So, was just curious your thoughts..

    [Reply]

    Mrs. Accountability Reply:

    Hi Shelley, thanks for asking! My son is 22 and he will turn 23 in October. Yes, when my son became employed full time I expected him to pay rent. My husband also did not want to charge anything. But I insisted and actually my son did feel that he should contribute to the household. My reasoning, like you, is that he needed to be responsible for some of his money. It is not real life to work a full time job and take all your money and blow it every week on anything you want. Now I’m not saying your son is doing that, but I think most kids will do that with their paycheck.

    When I was a young person, I was expected to sign over my entire paycheck – I lived with a foster family. I later learned that when my sisters back at home got jobs, our mother took all their money, too. That is NOT right! Even though both families were poor and living at poverty level, a young person should not be put to work to be the breadwinner for the family. I remember not even being able to buy personal “lady” products if you know what I mean, without asking for a few dollars – of my own money!!

    So, while I didn’t want to repeat that experience for my son, I also didn’t want to swing the total opposite direction and let him get into the habit of spending every penny willy-nilly without helping with the family expenses. If my husband and I were well off, out of debt rather than living paycheck to paycheck, I still would have expected my son to pay rent but I would have taken that money and put it into a special account for him.

    I don’t know your situation, but perhaps your husband would agree to that? Does your husband say why he doesn’t want to charge him rent? My husband never really gave a reason but I know he didn’t think it was the right thing to do. But my son and I came to an agreement and dad did not interfere. I hope that helps, and again, thanks for asking. Let me know if you have any more questions, okay? Best, Mrs. A

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