How Do I Pay My Expenses with $800?

Hello Everyone! How is your day going? If you come to this blog on how to pay off your debts, I would assume that you are under certain categories.

  1. Fresh graduate
  2. Unemployed for a year after the graduate
  3. Working part-time while studying (Impressive!)
  4. Hm.. probably you prefer flexible hours 

So, to introduce myself and my background, I am Wendy and turning 25 in 3 months in November! I was a graduate from Polytechnic last year in 2018 and majored in IT. However, IT is not my best skill after those crazy 3 years of schooling.

I got into Maybank after 3 months of unemployment. At that time, I was a fresh graduate so I got in without any interviews needed. It is understandable for fresh graduates or with lack of experiences in the outside world.

#1: Say Good-Bye To My Previous Job

After 6-months of working at Maybank, I dropped everything down because this is not what I wanted. Although, it seemed impulsive and crazy to you to become unemployed without earning any income, I was not happy there.

It affected my mental health state and I care about myself more than ‘care’ for others. Others will not thank you with authenticity and they also simply care about themselves!

#2: Getting Into Starbucks Is My Last Resort.

So, it was another 6 months of unemployment after I left Maybank and joined Starbucks as a part-time barista to earn some keeps to get by.

I chose part-time and will never consider full-time because it is pretty tiring. 

It goes by hourly wage, at 7 bucks per hour and it is seriously too low for me.

So, that is where the topic comes in!

#3: How Do I Get By With $800?

As a part-time barista with 7 bucks per hour, work my ass off like 4 to 5 days of work per week and on each day, I will work at most 8 hours. So, in total, my monthly salary is about $800 approximately.

Starbucks pay the salary of the first 4 weeks of the month. It does not pay you the full month. So the last week of the month, you will get the salary in the next month.

#4: So, Back To The Expenses.

My daily expenses are strictly done like mobile contract plans that cannot be undone or pay termination fees of $500. Obviously, I cannot pay off like that.

There is this rule, ‘Spend what is left after saving’.

I need to have this small bunch of savings so I followed one of the famous investor’s methods which is to set up a certain percentage and put it aside. You cannot touch that money either, for years! 

So, to declare my total expenses and treatments for my illness are about 500 bucks.

#Breaking Down The Income.

Monthly expenses are about 363 to 500 bucks. 

  • It involves my two mobile contract plans (one for mobile and the other for IPad) and definitely have reasons as to why I have two. 
  • Transport concession fees of 60 bucks per month. Specifically only for disable person and I have hearing loss so I am eligible for that.
  • Insurance savings plan of 53 bucks per month. It is nice to be ‘controlled’ as I have bad spending habits.
  • Student loan (Aw! I hate this) of 100 bucks per month. It will take 6 years to pay off. The money will be taken from my bank account automatically via GIRO. (That is why I hate schooling!)
  • Every 3 months, I need to go for anal warts treatments. If you are not sure about what it is and how I got it, you can read on this direct link. (I am not ashamed to share about it. )

#5: How Do I Able to Pay Them All?

Things like insurance and transport that you have to pay in full amounts, let it be. Just pay them full.

However, mobile contract plans, whenever I have a hard time paying for it, I pay partially like 80% of the bills instead of full amount.

Plus, I prefer you to look into each of the telco what rewards to redeem. I chose Starhub because they have that 5 to 15 or 20 bucks off voucher or offsets my total bills.

It works like points, every month you pay off your bills and accumulate them into points that can be used in the future. Such as offset your bills in a voucher format.

For anal warts treatment, it costs me 200 bucks and I have shared blog posts on it. I highly recommend you to read to avoid yourself ending up like me. Otherwise, it will affect you mentally and cost you more.

#6: Set a Certain Percentage of Amount Aside.

Like I mentioned above, there is a way to save a few amount of money aside for emergency and investment funds separately.

There are called financial freedom account (FFA) and long-term savings and spending account (LTSS).

I set up two different bank accounts for these two respectively and recommend you to find a bank with good interest rate. 

For FFA, it will consist of 15% of what is left after paying my expenses. For LTSS, it will consist of 10%.  

You are not allowed to spend or even touch the FFA bunch of money while LTSS is for emergency. Like, you want to pay for your friend’s birthday party or gift or something bad happen to you, (Touchwood!) 

#7: What To Do With The Leftover Sum of Money?

Of course, you need to eat!

I usually divide the money into 4 weeks, then divide again in 5 days. Why not 7 days?

Because you actually do not need to eat out everyday, right?

You can have homemade food at home, avoid food delivery, make use of kopitiam card that has a 5% discount off the meal price?

Cut down paying for bubble tea and movies tickets.

I know you need a break and have fun! You need to save otherwise, you will end up being not much difference from before, the old you.

I loved drinking bubble tea and loved that Korean kimchi soup at Dhoby Ghaut (8 bucks!) so, I tried to go there like thrice per month. 

We all are still learning to save and manage our money. Even if you are earning 2k per month and yet you do not know how to save, it is pointless earning a lot. 

#In my hind-sight,

While I worked at Starbucks and started off with this tight money management, I have noticed how other people are actually spending away their salary. 

There are businessmen and women coming over to Starbucks and buy the limited edition tumblers! 

Each can costs almost 60 bucks and some customers actually bought them to resell which is fine. A pretty good idea.

But those who looks so formal, rich and classy, they are actually buying to show off in front of their friends or they are itchy to spend money.

Some even owe IPhone XS MAX, and yes I do not know them at all so I do not know how much are they earning like seriously!

But if they are wise and know how to save then I have nothing to say. I have a slight bias towards office people because they are pretty arrogant and seriously, pay is just monthly salary.

There are some who sees us with such faces like, ‘Yew! There is a bin smell.’ My god.. You think I do not need to empty the trash you just made?

Okay this is another topic here which I will definitely say and update in another blog! (Laughs)

That is why I seem to have that mental disorder and tend to think a lot. But well, most of the time, their faces are pretty obvious.

So, I hope you get to save and pay off your expenses! Have Fun! Thank you for reading my blog! I am Wendy!

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