Fun With Numbers
Another math formula is to take your monthly budget (you may have to come up with one; there's all sorts of information in the library and online to help you), add up everything, and divide by either 160 or 80. These are of course the hours you'd work in a month full-time or part-time, respectively. Note the resulting figure; this is what you would have to make per hour in order to maintain the lifestyle indicated by your budget. For most of us normal human beings, this figure will be at least 8 or 9 dollars an hour; far above what most "service" jobs are willing to pay*. At least in the South. And we won't even talk about the minimum wage** (3).
There's been much made in the news lately about Americans' poor saving rate and it's fun watching all the lofty economic experts sitting in their magnificently appointed offices cluck their tongues and stroke their beards and ponder why we aren't putting money aside in the banks. Duh! If you've already sent that money on to the landlord, the utility companies, your workplace (in the form of gas, fees and maintenance for your car so you can get to work), the government, your doctor, and all the other niggling little places that money has to go "or else", it's kind of hard to put money aside, isn't it?
*I last used this calculation just before I got my job at the ad agency in 2000. At the time, I calculated I'd have to make somewhere around $8.50 an hour just to get by, even after cutting expenses to the bone. Things have only gotten more expensive since.
**Currently standing at $5.15 an hour. After an intense fight in Congress. Now when was the last time you could afford anything at $5.15 an hour?
(3) gerard v will no doubt jump all over me for my computations I've included here, but I had to go through them quickly -- I've got to go to work soon.
Good luck with your situation and, contrary to popular belief, I'm really hoping you get through this.
Once again, I'm sorry and Good Luck with everything.
For $5.15/hr one has to work 160 hours a week to earn a worthy check. Hey! I m promoting cannibalism here so when we re all poor and standong on front of a trash can trying to keep warm I can feast on your souls like the government is doing to us right now. But you still havent focused on the point that people feel that if you make more than minimum wage then you re doing good, which means that people truly dont understand there own finances nor baic economic principles.