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Registered nurse and construction business owner: Our budget and planning for our future

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my name is Julia Walker I'm 27 years old I'm a registered nurse and I make a base salary of 56 thousand a year my name is Michael Walker I'm 25 years old I own my own company Walker wilderness enterprises and I also work for an auction house company and I make thirty seven thousand a year I started by being the sole breadwinner for our family when Michael was starting his company he had also finished his undergraduate degree at CU at the time and so we lived on my income until we found out we were having a baby and then we realized we needed a little more money so that we could prioritize having somebody at home all the time with our daughter that's very important to us that we raise her and so that means sacrificing one of us working so when I went on maternity leave I took longer than most women do and Michael started working at the auction house and we're just kind of used to having one income right now and it's working for us but I will go back to work in about a month on a as-needed basis just to boost the income a little bit so we lived in Boulder after we both graduated college and I finished my nursing degree and we found that rent was extremely high we just couldn't afford it coming out with the money that I was bringing in alone while you were starting your business and really city life was never for us anyway we always wanted a country life and I grew up on a farm and my family has been very open and welcoming and we've been living with my parents for a little while now and it's been fantastic we've been able to save a lot of money continue to work on your company I could go back to school oh we have your dad yeah we have day care that is free and yeah we've definitely saved a lot of money from doing it and I think that we've had a great situation here we had had any poor relationships from in and it's been good for everybody her parents said it's it was weird having a big empty house and so we were welcoming everybody back the farm has been an escape for us so we like to do all the farm work we don't really seem like it's farm work to us or at work at all it's kind of an escape from our other jobs and you just out in nature exploring and doing whatever and having the quiet relaxing area so what's nice about the farm too is we don't rely on it for income necessarily so we get to try different things it's more of a hobby farm so this summer we had cattle in which we could actually invest in a cow and put the money back into our daughter savings account my family actually did that for me when I was growing up for college but we have chickens Michael and I have a garden every year that we you know can the produce and have it in the winter and it's just fun it's a good escape like Michael said so our monthly income pre-tax is two thousand eight hundred and eighty dollars and that's just based on Michael's income right now while I'm on maternity leave after that we pay about four hundred and eighty dollars in taxes so that's our state federal Social Security Medicare it's a lot more that comes out of your paycheck than you think about initially health insurance we pay about $50 a month for our family which is actually incredible yeah it's through my auctioneer company that I work for and it's a really good rate they get it is it's really low which is really nice which is a lot better than what Julia was paying when she was working at the hospital when we were on that and health insurance plan we paid about three hundred and forty dollars a month on my plan which was crazy yeah it's a nice big difference so our take-home income after all of that is about two thousand three hundred and fifty dollars so our rent well we don't have any because we live with my parents but we consider our small loan for our container house while we're building to be our rent if you will so that's around 380 dollars and then our gas and electric bill is zero for us because we share with her parents and we don't Lady Chatterley's they don't charge us so that's been really nice which is also the same for a TV and Internet they pay for that as well so they do we do have cell phones each of us that's about $84 a month as far as commuting goes that's one of our bigger expenses that's about $600 a month we had to buy a bigger car when we had our baby so we now have an auto loan and Michael commutes quite far for his job at the auction use so that includes gas and also auto insurance and then student loans that's that's on me I am still paying a small private loan for my nursing degree that is not taken out while I'm doing my masters so we pay that and that's $200 for that and then our food I'm about three hundred and eighty dollars a month and we usually do just our shopping at the beginning of the week so that we kind of budget everything out and we know how much we're spending each week exactly and really our only other cost is diapers right now which is about 40 bucks a month and every so often we try to go see a movie or so so we a lot about a hundred dollars for entertainment and eating out things like that but really our fun is at home now with our daughter and playing on the farm here yeah we have a tight budget which is nice because we're able to then save money in so after those expenses we have about five hundred and sixty six dollars left over in which we put into various savings accounts so one hundred dollars goes into Michaels 401k that comes directly out of his paycheck at the auctioneer's we put about two hundred dollars in our joint savings account and then two hundred dollars in our daughters college account so we're trying to save for college every month and I think what we wish we knew is we wish we knew how it's been of life was having a kid is very expensive I may or may not have told you that it wouldn't be that expensive but as we've learned it is expensive to have a child totally worth it though rent is expensive when we didn't live on the farm it was just it was unaffordable for us and I think one of the most important things we've learned really is to invest in yourself in certain things so it's okay to invest in your education because that's improving you down the road improving your financial outlook if you will sometimes you do have to put a car on loan but just be reasonable and what you get don't get a you know ridiculous car that you don't need maybe consider it a used one we did that yeah we got a used car at this point in our lives on one income we're kind of sacrificing the fancy new clothes there are a lot of travel right now and just really trying to stick to our budget and also enjoy the things that really matter most which is our family mm-hmm
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