Couple with 2 Years Old Kid. How Much Do You Have to Earn to Live Comfortably?

I am curious on how much others. who are in the same situation as me, should earn to live comfortably these days.

My situation would be

A couple in mid 30s, with a 2-year-old child, living in Sydney Eastern Suburb. We have a car and goes around mostly in our own car. Since our daughter have low immune system and gets sick easily, we try to avoid public transport as much as we can until she is older. currently budgeting for about 5k a month after tax depending on my overtime and no housing spending. I feel like every month we would spend more than that, sometimes up to 7K. just wondering if anyone else is in the same spot as we are.

My definition of comfortably would be

Roof over head (renting)
Own a car, and paying regular car expenses such as repayment, rego, etc
Can buy groceries without having to worry about price of each items.
Family dine out in the weekend, nothing fancy like Café Sydney or such.
Go to the movies maybe once a month?
Once a year holiday within Australia/Pacific or south-east Asia.
100-dollar worth of kids spending, toys, or kids show (Wiggle, high 5, etc) a month?
Health insurance for all 3 of us.
Can still save maybe about 500 a year?

It would be great if you guys can share your criteria of comfortably too in your replies.

Thanks.

Comments

  • +26 votes

    $hitloads

    •  

      * 2

      • -1 vote

        More than me?

        •  

          Yeah, Scrooge you're gold don't amount to anything for CoL in Sydney/Melbourne inner city.

  • +2 votes

    I can comfortably live on very little. I'm not sure what your rent is. I think it would be much more than what I pay so my figure would be different to yours. How about $24,000 plus annual rent/mortgage/council rates and grossing up to account for tax? That would do me just fine. I don't hold health insurance. Rest of your list is similar.

    Although I don't worry about price of each item when shopping I do like and search for bargains buying such things as coffee only when on special as I know it's on a half price special every 4 weeks.

    •  

      "How about $24,000 plus annual rent/mortgage/council rates and grossing up to account for tax?"

      Sorry i'm a bit unsure with what you meant here, do you mean you have 24000 to spend on top of your annual rent/mortgage/council rates?

      • +2 votes

        Yes that's right. Rent could be anything.

  • +2 votes

    if you plan on sending your kid in a few years to an elite school… then better start saving now.

    it really depends on what your definition of comfortable is. household income pre-tax 150K would get you by. 200k would be comfortable where you wouldn't be worrying about prices of your everyday things like a 10 cent increase of petrol or buying that $18 smash avocado on sourdough toast or buying a toy for your kid that's not on sale.

    •  

      lol it seems i need to find a much better job. i have a rough a idea of what is comfortable for me, and it doesnt involve 15-20 dollar per meal brunch. although i should start looking into my kid child care/school cost as well into it.

      • +14 votes

        if you plan to live in sydney's eastern suburbs, like kingsford.. you are already paying close to or if not more than $500/ week for a 2 bedroom apartment. and that's not including bills

        is you plan on buying a car or upgrading your car every 10 years…say a chap Hyundai. or corolla new will cost you 20K that's 2000k/ year you have to put away and miniumum 4k per year to maintain your existing car.

        if you eat cheap Asian food out on the weekend each lunch will cost you about $30 and dinner $40 you do that once a week and that's 3.5K
        do that at a café moderate restaurant that'll be $100 or 5K a year

        movie per month that's $500 per year

        2 mobile phones and home internet might cost $100 per month that's another 1K

        family health insurance including hospital and extra maybe $250 per month 3K

        annual holiday for 2 weeks to cheap Asian country like Vietnam
        airfares cheapily will be $1000
        accommodation will be @ 100/per night. $1500
        food and spending @ 100/day $1500
        that's a minimum of $3500

        and that's $43,500 + bills + other discretionary spending + eating out more + groceries each week + savings for a rainy day + saving for your childs tuition + your childs weekend activities + SO MUCH MORE

        • +1 vote

          I agree with Archi on costs. Quite accurate. And thats not going overboard - never realized how expensive.

    • +8 votes

      First read that as "sell your kid". Seemed a little harsh, but would make things much more affordable.

      • +1 vote

        The 0zB way

        •  

          If taking on the risk of selling one, maybe it'd be better to sell in bulk. You know, have 4, sell two, Have 5, sell three. Have 6, sell four… in 20 years when they are all grown up and can't afford a cardboard box to live in, the ones you sold would understand you having had to do it to fund the others. Also, you could take your pick of them all and keep the best two (also the OzB way; as you'd also reduce your risk of having to deal with any delinquents).

          And a great way to sustain the rate at which wealth is moving up to the top 1%.

        •  

          Gotta wait for eBay to waive the listing fees

        •  

          @buckster: Gumtree is free

    • +5 votes

      if you plan on sending your kid in a few years to an elite school… then better start saving now.

      Yes. Save. Scrounge and deprive yourself and the child of a good life now, so they can slave away at an elite school and get a good job later then do the same to their own child. Your will get old and sick and die and your life will be over before you know it and you'll have achieved nothing of note that will survive 50 years after your own death.

      Intelligence indeed.

      if you want to educate your child, take them to the zoo, or a museum or an observatory. Don't hothouse them for an elite school in the hope they'll get a better paying job if they survive the pressure cooker.

  • +15 votes

    Can still save maybe about 500 a year?

    That's your definition of comfortable?

    Anything that comes up (say your car or your child need some test that's not covered by medicare) can easily eat away your entire year's saving!

    • +1 vote

      was being realistic in my own circumstances. when shit hit the fan, holiday and emergency money for my car are used. we also have top cover private insurace for all 3 of us.

      • +2 votes

        I didn’t know top covers cover everything with no gaps.

        • +1 vote

          It doesn't. I had a procedure that cost me $10K out of pocket, after insurance and Medicare.

      • +9 votes

        when shit hit the fan, holiday and emergency money for my car are used

        What if shit hit the fan just after your holiday or emergency car money has been spent? And how would you get around if you had to divert your car money elsewhere?

        I think you should be aiming to save a lot more than $500/year.
        $500 is less than $10/week in savings or $1.35/day.

        A small price increase in groceries or public transport costs and you'll have nothing left.

        Don't rely on private health for comprehensive cover. It's far from that! There's still lots of costs involved - whether it's gap payments or treatment that's outside of a hospital. Even the co-payment for admittance to the hospical is often a few hundred dollars.

        • +5 votes

          I also have top cover health insurance (work pays for it). It still cost me $200 out of pocket to see a specialist that I was referred to after seeing my GP. If I need any procedures then I'll probably have to pay partial amounts, etc.

          Health insurance really doesn't give you much until you're admitted into the care of a hospital - and it just allows you to do that more quickly than someone relying on medicare.

        • +1 vote

          @macrocephalic:

          It still cost me $200 out of pocket to see a specialist that I was referred to after seeing my GP.

          I had the same experience. Paying $200/month for years for top hospital and top extras and then realise it doesn't even cover specialist appointments. Medicare does provide a rebate on a portion of the costs, but I don't understand why PH doesn't pay any benefit towards it. It's not really open to abuse since the visits require a GP referral in the first place. I ditched my private health cover after that.

          When I was in the back of an ambulance with a suspected heart attack coming on, they asked me if I wanted to go to a public hospital or private hospital and they mentioned that the private hospital has a minimum co-payment of $300. (I chose public - not because I didn't want to pay, but because I heard before that public hospitals have more resources available should something go horribly wrong). Costs me much more to have PH than not having it at all!

        •  

          @bobbified:

          I do not fully understand many peoples insistence on private hospital admission or cover

          Being a medical who has worked in hospitals and now private clinics before, really private health insurance only good for non-urgent things. It does not cover specialist consultations (which many people often act surprised when I tell them that)

          Basically public hospitals will see you promptly and manage you after triaging how serious your presentations are. If they do not see you quickly chances you do not have something clinically significant that requires management immediately

          Personally most circumstances I would rather go to a tertiary medical hospital than a private suburban hospital.
          The amount of CPR calls in private hospitals night shifts are staggering and the lack of junior doctor support is also ridiculous.

        •  

          @Surrealblank:

          I do not fully understand many peoples insistence on private hospital admission or cover

          I think there's the subconscious thought people have where they expect better service when they're paying for something vs something they're getting for free (even though it's not free).

          And then, of course, you've got the people who think they're too good for public services.

      • +5 votes

        I have private health cover and had to take my son to a specialist when he was about six months old. Cost me $300- private health insurance only got me into the doctor. Didn’t actually give me any rebates. Same thing recently when I had to have something checked for myself $600, nothing back from private health. It is like a ticket to get into the building. Nothing else!

        • +9 votes

          Wow PHI is such a rort!

        • +1 vote

          @HippoHop: It sure is!

        • +2 votes

          Have to upvote your comment. Until now I cannot see much benefits from PHI.

        • +2 votes

          I had top hospital + extras cover for a recent surgery - after the $500 excess it covered the full hospital fee, but only a fraction of the surgeon and anaesthetist fees - which left me around $15,000 out of pocket

        • +4 votes

          @haisergeant: It really is fairly useless. If the cost of paying the Medicare Surcharge comes close to the cost of insurance then you should get it. If you're a low or medium income earner then it's not going to pay itself off.

        •  

          @macrocephalic:

          Last year when I had a gallbladder attack, I was quoted about $13000 out of pocket for the surgery, and have to wait 2 months since the waiting list is really long. Then I flew to an Asian country to get it sorted out with $2000 including the flight fare. The technology of the surgery is the same.

          Much much difference.

        • +5 votes

          @haisergeant:

          It seems people just pay PHI just for the sake of it without knowing what it is covered and what not. I pay for PHI and I just had my Cochlear Implant Surgery. Total bill was for $30.000 which I only paid $1300. That 's a deal for me.

          I'm going to do the same procedure for my next ear soon.

          Before agreeing on an insurance policy, I made sure that I was covered for the things I needed/wanted.

        • +6 votes

          @Colombian:

          Before agreeing on an insurance policy, I made sure that I was covered for the things I needed/wanted.

          It's a bit of a game of roulette to try and guess what a currently-healthy young adult may need in terms of health.

          When you already know or have just found out, it's called a "pre-existing condition" and it's too late!

        • +4 votes

          It seems like there is a lot of misconceptions here. PHI (private health insurance) should be thought as private hospital cover (admission, OT, ward etc). It can not cover outpatient services, which I believe was legislated, except on certain plans e.g. oversea students who don't have Medicare cover.

          http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Conten...

          What doesn't private health insurance cover?
          Private health insurance does not cover medical services that are provided out-of-hospital and which are covered by Medicare. These services include GP visits, consultations with specialists (in their rooms) and diagnostic imaging and tests.

        •  

          @blonky: Ouch - sorry to hear - was that for injury? Criminal compensation/work cover?

        •  

          @haisergeant: which Asian country?

        •  

          @aussieboosie:

          That country is Viet Nam, I had surgery in a local private hospital.

        • +1 vote

          @kingmw:

          does not cover medical services that are provided out-of-hospital and which are covered by Medicare. These services include GP visits, consultations with specialists (in their rooms) and diagnostic imaging and tests.

          The problem is, those out-of-hospital services aren't wholly covered by Medicare. Medicare only covers a portion of it and the gap payment is big enough to leave a dent in someone's budget - with or without private health insurance.

          I understand the reasoning behind the way it works (ie, requiring some user input to the costs), but I think there should be more cost input from the health insurer's end to alleviate pressure off Medicare and the public system. Otherwise, why are we forced onto Private Health? It would make sense for the insurer to cover anything that Medicare would otherwise cover for the insured, plus any other benefits they may offer.

          The way it is now, it's literally a cash cow for the insurance companies.

        •  

          @haisergeant:

          local private hospital

          Did you go to a "foreigner" type private hospital, like FV? I've never been in a private hospital there, but I've walked through a public hospital and I think I'd be a little hesitant in getting any invasive procedures done in there. haha

        • +1 vote

          @Colombian:
          Yeh i am going to know exactly how i am going to get sick in the future, i have PHI and never used it. Coughing up 170 a month because it is mandated by the government. It's a real worry when an private corporate exists because of government policy, there really needs to be an inquiry into the whole rort.

        • +1 vote

          @Melong:

          It is not mandated by the government, it is your choice. Nobody is pointing a gun at you for this.

        • +1 vote

          @bobbified:

          No, I did not go to FV, since this hospital for mostly foreigners, charges high cost. I went to Van Hanh hospital, which is also a private hospital but their patients are mostly local. The doctors there studied from US (I know the doctor) and they have more practise with gallstone (this is common disease in Viet Nam). Their service is better than public hospital, for example you don't have to wait with crowed people, and the patient room is for 2 patients, not 8 like public hospitals. But little bit more expensive, for example $1000 for the whole procedures with $600-800 from public hospital.

        •  

          @kingmw: Except that extras cover does cover lots of things that a sort of medical. So you pay a bunch of money for PHI and get hospital cover, and you can go and get a remedial massage or see an optometrist, but if you have to see a gastric specialist then your SOOL.

          Most people will go most of their lives getting their medical treatment as outpatients.

        • +1 vote

          @Colombian: Once you're earning a certain amount you can either pay the surcharge, or pay for PHI. The costs between the cheapest hospital cover and the surcharge are not huge, and PHI can end up cheaper as your income increases.

          How does this make sense for the government? Instead of paying extra tax to cover medicare, you have to buy a service from a private entity; they're literally diverting tax money to a private industry.

        • +1 vote

          @Colombian:

          it is your choice. Nobody is pointing a gun at you for this.

          When the government gives you a mandate to either join or get screwed with a lot of additional tax, I'd call that "forcing".

        •  

          @blonky:

          My goodness. Care to name the insurer - PM me if you prefer pls.

  • +15 votes

    Can still save maybe about 500 a year?

    Can I get this right? Your idea of comfortable is saving $500 / year?

    • +2 votes

      Pretty sure we're being trolled. Or OP is hilariously naive. $500 a year isn't enough for unexpected costs for that year, much less keeping up an emergency fund.

    • +1 vote

      I would say saving $500 per month is comfortable (we have been saving around $1500 per month for our house deposit though…)

  • +2 votes

    Comfortably? its all depend on your lifestyle. There are people in Centerlink benefit with one child who live Comfortably. They would still have a Asian holiday with Jetstar instead of Quantas Business class.

    • +13 votes

      Yeah Quantas doesn't fly to Buali anyway!

    • +6 votes

      There are people in Centerlink benefit with one child who live Comfortably. They would still have a Asian holiday with Jetstar inste

      Not in Sydney's eastern suburbs unless they're comfortable living on the street.

      • +3 votes

        Noone's forced to live in the Eastern suburbs. Where you live is a choice, just like what car you drive. No one would be sympathetic if OP said he had to pay for expensive maintenance on his 2 year old BMW 7 series and so couldn't afford other things. I don't know why housing - above a minimum level of expense - is treated any differently.

        • +1 vote

          A couple in mid 30s, with a 2-year-old child, living in Sydney Eastern Suburb.

          Failed to read OP

        • +2 votes

          @Quantumcat: I read the OP. But where you live isn't some immutable fact (as opposed to say, having a kid). There are a few ways for OP to live comfortably - one is to increase his income, but that's a lot easier said than done, and most people are already maximising that. Another is to lower his expenses, and while drastic, moving is one option to do that.

        • +2 votes

          @HighAndDry: it doesn't make any sense to answer the question of "what income do I need to live comfortably in a couple with a child in Sydney's eastern suburbs" with "someone on a Centrelink income could be comfortable" or "$50,000 if you live in Toowoomba and have no kids ". It doesn't answer the question which was asked. You might as well say, "you don't need any income if you still live in your mum's basement". It would be just as helpful. I mean if you wanted to be helpful you could say, "$150,000 but if you move to Toowoomba that will change to $80,000". But chances are he and his wife have jobs in Sydney, and/or have a lease, and can't go moving wherever.

        • +6 votes

          @Quantumcat: But OP's core question was:

          Couple with 2 Years Old Kid. How Much Do You Have to Earn to Live Comfortably?

          OP is in a relationship and has a kid. Those things really can't be changed. Where OP lives though? That can be, albeit a drastic one. OP's current situation doesn't mean he can't change it, and his actual requirements listed don't mention "staying in the Eastern suburbs". It just depends how important where OP lives is to OP and his family.

        •  

          @HighAndDry: the question asked was the question asked, answering a different question isn't helpful

        • +3 votes

          @Quantumcat: Have I offended you in some way lately? I feel like you're not doing much more than nitpicking an incidental detail here.

          Anyways, that aside and going back to the topic - OP is renting, so moving isn't as impractical as if OP was an owner occupier with a property there. And the discussion can, and rightfully is, also extending to what OP's realistic and reasonable expectations should be. I'm hardly the only one who's pointing out that OP should be adjusting his budget to his current income (and long-term goals, like presumably eventually buying a property), and not focusing on the hypothetical income to meet some kind of rigid budget that he's come up with irrespective of actual income.

        • +3 votes

          @HighAndDry: he didn't say what his income was - there's no need to assume it isn't enough and that he'll have to move. If everyone said $150K or $200K and he was earning less then he could adjust his expectations

          I wonder why he is asking anyway - you'd think you would know if you were struggling or comfortable. Maybe he has some job offers and is working out which one to accept if he wants to be able to afford to live in the eastern suburbs?

        •  

          @Quantumcat: This line makes me think OP isn't that set:

          Can still save maybe about 500 a year?

          Unless OP meant $500k, I know primary school aged kids of friends who save more than that. And if OP is making enough to save $500k a year, his discretionary spending should not be $5k a month.

          So I can't think of a realistic reason other than that OP is approaching the process from the wrong direction altogether. Job offers/etc should always be considered in terms of dollars / opportunity cost perspective (and opportunity cost mostly being time spent with family). The best advice for OP would be that he should approach this from the other direction:

          1. "What's realistically my (after-tax) income going to be?" - OP has to start here. It's no good daydreaming.

          2. Either ordering of "What are my non-negotiable long-term goals and how much will I need to save per year to get there?" and if OP doesn't have any which are absolute priorities, then "What is my spending on necessities?"

          Only after these three should OP even be considering discretionary spending. And in the medium- to long-term, where OP lives and how much rent he pays is definitely something he can adjust so as to balance with the other items on his enjoyment-of-life list.

        • -6 votes

          No one forces you to live in a city (except your employer).
          No one forces you to live in Australia.
          No one forces you to live.

          Suicide is an option to get costs down.

        • -3 votes

          This bloke again with the BMW references, mate get over it. What does a BMW have to do with this situation?! you've got a fetish or something. Why would someone be paying expensive maintenance on a 2 year old BMW haha, it would be under warranty doofus! Stop mentioning a brand you know nothing about in order to try and act like it's a bad thing in someones life - just because you can't afford one. Salty much.

        •  

          @HighAndDry: stick to your fun toyota corolla life

  • +9 votes

    lol what ? $500/year? You need help on your finances…

  • +4 votes

    You haven't included costs like utilities, dentist, clothes, parking, insurance other than health or anything for personal use like a computer or phone etc.

    Given you specify not trying to save costs by looking at grocery prices, and you are choosing to live in the costliest area in Australia, I would suggest you need around $7k/mth PLUS housing costs.

    I actually think you will need substantially more than that, as the attitude of not looking at prices will mean you find many, many unexpected costs each month.

    •  

      $7k/mnth + ~$2k for housing makes is $9k per month…isn't it too much..

      • +3 votes

        $108k/p.a.+ after tax would put them in the highest quintile for household disposable income:
        http://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/[email protected]/DetailsPage/6523.020...

        Also, not clear if this is one income, or if there are childcare expenses to factor as well.

      • +2 votes

        For a double income family, considering these expenses include children's expenses, it's doable. On the high side but nothing crazy. The bigger problem is that OP is renting right now, and living right up against the limits of their combined income will mean renting forever.

        •  

          Yeah - pretty much screwed.

  • +8 votes

    I have 2 kids and think we do quite well, but don't do half of the stuff on your list. I'd suggest that maybe you can be comfortable / content with less.

    • +7 votes

      Second Freitag. With the expenses listed by OP plus missing some essential as mskeggs pointed out - second income is the only way out.

      Like weekly dine out - may be once in 2-3 week? $100 of kid toys/show - thats $1.2k per year..way too much.for my kids its on their birthday or they need earn it ! May be it is just me or my limited financial resources.

      • -1 vote

        do you guys ever go on holidays? or no because it's not an investment

  • +3 votes

    It's much easier to rein in your spending than trying to increase your income.

    You can still get the same value, or even better, you just need to be more strategic. If your idea of living comfortably is not doing this, are you happy to work many more hours per week (e.g. get a second job) to achieve it, versus spending a bit more time being more strategic in your spending?

    •  

      It is easier to reduce your expenses, however the jump in finding a better paying job can be quite considerable, also considering wages tend not to increase anymore.

  • +2 votes

    Could this be a troll post I wonder, especially given the username???!

    •  

      Exactly this

  • -1 vote

    My definition of comfortably would be

    a lot higher than most other people's I'd imagine. Honestly, your "budget list" looks like the expenses for a single late-20s graduate in their first job. No couple with a young kid I know goes out to eat every weekend, plus movies every month, etc. It's not even about the money. They just have other commitments on their time.

    • +2 votes

      you do realise couples can have weekends free which means they can go out and still enjoy life. They don't have to sit for 48 hours over the weekend and stare at a blank wall because that means not spending. Mid 30s they can probably drop the kid off at one of the grandparents house for the night and go out on a saturday night. That is a pretty normal thing. The grandparents would also love to look after the kid. 1 movie a month is literally nothing, it's a normal thing.

  • +1 vote

    I'm similar to that (30s, but Melbourne) with 1 kid around 2. My spending seems closer to 5k.

    • minus rent
    • plus mortgage
    • minus car loan (debt is bad mmkay, unless its a tax deduction)
    • 100-dollar worth of kids spending (I don't do kids shows) but I spend whatever is needed to stimulate his growth/learning like books/toys/etc
    • minus health insurance

    I'd think I'm living quite comfortably.

  •  

    What you are describing, 5k a month, even with housing is very comfortable indeed.

  • +7 votes

    Fortnite skins will use up all of that $500 savings

  • +6 votes

    As a family paying off a mortgage with 2 young kids and aiming for a similar lifestyle I think the lowest that kind of lifestyle can be achieved is around $50kpa plus housing costs after tax/transfers. That is if you are very good with getting deals e.g. when we see Kleenex toilet tissue for 25-30c a roll we buy 60 at a time. (Hence why I am on Ozbargain, we'll even opt for SD Netflix over HD and wouldn't think of Foxtel etc, we run an annual credit on our electricity from solar & frugal use as well etc). We also like to put our spare cash toward family fun activities on the weekends and holidays.

    Include rent/mortgage and you head to around $70kpa but I think to be really comfortable, and really comfortable should include saving at least $10k per year then $90k after tax/transfers is where you need to be. Gets you out of penny pinching on your holidays, have extra money for emergencies etc. Probably add extra for housing in Sydney (we are in Perth) so yeah, it wouldn't surprise me to see you needing $100k+ to support your lifestyle after tax with $30k of that factored into housing costs.

    Ironically for my family my single income left me well above that but since being saddled with the family and a change of careers we live on far less as a family than I did when I was single. No more $500 nights out on the town (although who really wants to as they get older).

    Trouble with family tax in Australia and overall high tax rates (especially if you have student debts) to clear $90~$100kpa your gross pay needs to be up around $140~$160k which is beyond most of us in a down economy.

    2x professionals struggle to hit it owing to childcare fees.. A single professional came make it but lets be honest, you are in a very high income occupation to make that on your own. And we aren't anywhere near talking about being able to rent or buy in any top-end or close to the city location…

    •  

      What about Cannington? Close to the city and cheap!

      •  

        Cannington is definitely well connected to freeways/infrastructure/Curtin uni but a bit of crime and away from the coast..

        •  

          Yeah, not close to much water. Water's not for everyone though. I personally don't care for the beach at all, so I didn't mind it. Crime is probably not that bad. Just scum from maddo, gosnells, and armadale coming through on the way to loiter and beg in the city.

          I'm from Melbourne. We have a house I. Cannington where we lived 4 years. The two crimes closest to me were
          - housemate's bag got grabbed by aborigines on a motorbike as she walked home from the station.
          - disturbed a would-be car thief in the middle of his job one night. Aboriginal again.

          Considering it's just a working class suburb, that's not all that bad.

        •  

          @freakatronic: heh, I used to live in Belmont, it is funny what you get used to, like a yearly broken window & home invasion for every house on the street.

          At least when they stole my car/computer/ipad/phone they left us sleeping peacefully inside ;)

          Most of the crime in Perth is petty, but there are plenty of suburbs where burglar rates may see the average home robbed once every 20 years compared to once every second year in the worse places which are mostly central or east (add Scarborough, Rockingham, Mandurah, Fremantle & Clarkson).

          Melbourne tells me this trend will increase and when crime starts regularly occurring on the streets I'd get out.

          My wife's friend near Cannington (Queens Park) was car jacked and assaulted on the street earlier in the year, something that would have been unheard of in Perth just a few years ago but now common.

    • +1 vote

      we'll even opt for SD Netflix over HD

      Too far

      • +1 vote

        Unwatchable in SD!

        What is he thinking!?!?

  • +39 votes

    We have three kids and one income sub 70k. We spend 5k a month and don't miss out on much. It really depends what your priorities are and how sensible you can be with money. I consider our lifestyle comfortable but other's may not.

    We have a mortgage and all the usual bills except for private health insurance (rip off). I save money by shopping the specials at Woolworths and Coles, solar panels on the roof, cheap phone plans (amaysim), cheap unlimited nbn (myrepublic), not eating out (but takeaways once a week), running an economical car (800km/45l), not buying lunches but making them at home etc.

    I also have 2 flybuys cards to play the bonus points game (about $150 on one, $250 on the other so far since the start of the year - these will buy xmas presents for the kids and food in December) as well as a credit card linked to velocity (paid in full each month) for an eventual family holiday.I buy stuff in bulk when I can even if it seems expensive at the time (I still have 4 years supply of dishwashing tabs thanks to ozbargain).

    And most of all - I enjoy being frugal, for me it's a sense of pride and accomplishment of getting the same things as others but for sometimes significantly less

    • +6 votes

      And most of all - I enjoy being frugal, for me it's a sense of pride and accomplishment of getting the same things as others but for sometimes significantly less

      I couldn't agree more with this statement. All hail OzBargain.

    •  

      From my experience there are 2 kinds of people. Those that can live within their means even on a low wage and those that can't even on a high wage. Nothing wrong with a sub 70k income, it's plenty to live very comfortably.

    • +2 votes

      Sub 70k is after tax right? If it's before tax, you wont have 5k a month to spend or so i miss something here?

      •  

        this, is it after or before? Do you send your kids to schools or childcare?

  • +1 vote

    You need to be earning enough that you pay 100k in tax to be comfortable

    • +3 votes

      I'm pretty sure OP has the opposite problem. OP in that thread is obviously frugal and financially plans ahead, and THAT causes them to be rich and to have savings. OP here is…. well, starting with expenditure first. And then working backwards. That's the wrong way to go about it completely.

  • +7 votes

    Since our daughter have low immune system and gets sick easily, we try to avoid public transport as much as we can until she is older.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't the immune system weaken over age? Unless your daughter has a serious medical condition, wouldn't it be better if she is exposed to various sorts of germs in external environments earlier than later? If you expose children to different environments early to build up immunity, they would be less likely to be sick when exposed to specific germs in the future.

    Own a car, and paying regular car expenses such as repayment, rego, etc

    Repayments should not be a regular car expense in my opinion. If you need to make repayments on a car, that means you don't have enough funds to purchase the car. The interest from the car repayments will eat into your bank account and could be used for other things such as groceries or saving for a home loan.

    Can still save maybe about 500 a year?

    That is extremely low. If you forgo a $4 coffee per day, you can save an extra $20 a week, totaling $960 per year assuming you work 5 days a week over 48 weeks. If you forgo a $10 lunch purchased from a store per day, you can save an extra $50 a week, totaling $2400 a year. Really depends how well you budget for things.

    Year salary becomes irrelevant if you don't spend your money wisely. It all comes down to your financial literacy and decision making.

    I could be making 15k p.a doing 2 days of retail work a week and be able to afford a trip to south east asia because I'm happy to buy half price groceries, pay regular expenses for a cheap car and have fun at home by inviting people over and streaming movies.

    Or I could be working full time at a bank making 80k a year but can't afford a holiday because all the money goes towards financing a BMW, getting drunk every friday night and purchasing full price groceries every week.