How to live on $700 a month. Today, I am a single SAHM living very well and comfortably on $18k/year. Although it may sound small, it is a lot for me. Our family can live on the same amount as families earning $60,000+/year, I can assure you. God is good to us, and I do my best to provide for my family. It’s that simple.
UPDATE: I started making $10k/month. (See my journey in my Organize The Chaos(tm), Finances course. I will share my journey from being homeless to making 8-figures and the steps you can take to get there. The course is available here.
It’s not always glamorous at what the world calls the poverty level. I live on $700 a month for several years, which was $8,400/year.
Technically, I have lived on $5 for my entire life. However, I was in a shelter at the time, so that doesn’t count. If you want to get technical, the lowest amount I’ve ever lived on is $5. However, that was when I was living in a homeless shelter, so it doesn’t count.
After I was released from the homeless shelter, I started looking for a new place to live. I thought of renting an apartment since I could not afford to buy a house. It was necessary for me to complete various tenant vetting processes like those conducted by organizations like AAOA to determine my financial and personal stability. After a long search, I finally found a place worth my efforts. My first apartment cost $450 per month. It was a very nice two-bedroom apartment that was brand new. You should consider renting an apartment if you don’t yet have enough money to buy a home. On sites like Rent.com (to know more, refer, you might be able to find the perfect one. This was the key to my low monthly power bill of $40. It was probably insulated to the highest quality. However, I must tell you that my large house now costs me only $80. Maybe it’s because I’ve learned to reduce my power bills by a lot over the years.
Here are the exact bills I had and how I did it. At the time I live on $700 a month, my bills looked like this:
- $450 Rent
- $30 Debt
- $25 Debt
- $40 Power
- $20 Gas
- $25 Car Insurance
- $10 Tithes
- $0 Water (apt. paid)
- $ 0 Sewer
- $.0 Trash
- $ 0 Internet
- $12 Phone
- $0 Cable
- $0 Groceries
I refuse to get a room mate, so it was just me and two little ones trying to make our way through our new situation.
Even though my electricity bill was low, I was still enroll in a low-income power program called LIHEAP. It’s best to Google it in your state or calls your power company to ask. However, I believe it is available in all states. LIHEAP typically pays $80-$300 per year on your power bill.
As I was in Oregon, I received $300 at that time. It’s much higher there. That $300/year covered my power bill for almost eight months. As my income increased, I received $240 the next year. I kept digging myself out of that huge hole.
The cable wasn’t available to me. I bought a TV and VHS player for $10 at a yard sale, and we played tapes that way. I grabbed a nice table from someone who didn’t need it to make my entertainment centre. The same goes for my rocking chair. The couch I bought was $100, and everything else I purchased to furnish my apartment was very cheap. Every time I went shopping, I checked Craigslist and thrift shops.
Gas was very cheap because I didn’t travel much. I didn’t really have the money to travel anywhere. To save money, I ran all my errans at once when I was running them. My car insurance was cheap because I drove less than 10,000 miles per year and because my state had lower insurance rates because of fewer accidents.
Food was paid for by food stamps** or WIC. However, I was able to get off all assistance in time and haven’t been on any welfare for a very long time.
My total bills were $612, and I was paying $700 a month. I kept the rest in my checking account and spent very sparingly, almost none, to make ends meet. My fervent goal was never to get cash aid. I don’t agree with their cash aid program and have never wanted it!
Also Check – How to Live On $800 Monthly Budget In The City
It was also a huge help that I discovered the idea of selling items I got for free in order to increase my income. This was the first step in my journey to where I am today. Although I didn’t have much, I had my children and had support. It’s possible to live below poverty and still have enough. It is our world that tells us what we need to be happy. My children and I have a roof over our heads, food on our tables, clothes on our backs, and a roof over our heads.
To make their lives easier and simplify their lives. When you live on very little, things become really simple. All those fancy cars, fast food tabs, and elaborate houses all seem to disappear when you live on so little. Realize how little you really need to live a normal life. Then, you will appreciate what you have and how much you don’t need.
- To get rid of debt. To get out of debt, many people live with less money. This is, in my opinion, extremely smart. You will need to make drastic changes if you want to get out of debt. It may not be livie on $700 a month, but it could be living off half of your income. If you are married with one income, you can try to live in a state where both of you have enough money. You can put $2,000 on your debt if one of you earns $2,000 per month. This is a fast way to get out of debt. Once you are out of debt, you can go back and buy your house, get a car, and pay cash for rent and car payments.
- To retire earlier. Nobody wants to work their whole life. I’m not one of them! For the past four years, I have worked 80+ hours per week. This is for a reason. To provide for my family, as a single mother, I make $10k per month and get to where I want to go. I just bought an entirely new car with cash, and I want to save for college, my retirement, the kids’ college, and for their cars. I want to buy one of the Stunning New Homes in the Okanagan or anywhere else where I can retire and enjoy my non-working days with my family in a loving community. So that I don’t have so much to do for the rest of my life, I need to work hard now.
- To be prepared for an emergency. What would happen if you or your spouse was laid off? What happens if your home is destroyed by a natural disaster? There are many possible outcomes, so having an emergency fund can be a huge help.
- To prepare for children. Some people prefer to live modestly in order to be able to have children or adopt. Although I believe children are relatively inexpensive to raise (see my post here on how I got my kids clothes for free), they can still add to monthly expenses. A bigger house might mean more bedrooms, more space, more cars, more food and so forth. It is wise to save now for these expenses.
- To open your own business. It can be very expensive, depending on what type of business you are trying to start. Also Check- Online Business startup ideas. Although blogging is one of the most affordable businesses, it does require investment. It takes time to create it. You can make a lot of money from it. In just one year of starting my blog, I was earning $10,000/month. It was amazing to go from $18,000 per YEAR to $10,000/month. I still can’t believe it!
Except for the fact that I bought the car, my life has not changed. I save money like mad. Because I want to be a successful entrepreneur, I work hard. It has made a huge difference in my life, and you may find it possible to be self-employed. It’s best to have the cash to start it upfront so that you can ROCK it. If you’re thinking of starting a blog, here’s a post to help you. Check out my top blogging tips and tricks right here!
How to lower your cost of living regardless of what income you have:
Related Article – How to Live a Luxurious Lifestyle on a Budget
- Do not use credit cards. It is not a good idea to accumulate any debt. You can live a totally free life by being debt-free.
- Get the lowest-priced cell phone service possible. The prepaid card can last for three months if you don’t use your phone often. Net 10 is a great service. Their service cost $30 per month, which I paid $10 for the last time I used it. It lasted me three months and was $30 each month.
- Use cashback sites like Ebates. If you’re going to spend the money anyway, why not get paid to shop? Register here to get a $10 gift card for free if you don’t already have one. You can get your gift card by making a purchase of $25 or more. They also have all the sites I shop at, so it is very simple. To make sure I always remember to review them, I stick a sticky note to my computer. Ebates has been my partner for over 3-4 years, and I have already earned more than $2,000. They are the pioneers in the cashback industry, and I highly recommend them.
- You can negotiate your bills. You can negotiate your bills with some of them. It is possible. You can negotiate credit card bills and everything to get it lowered!
- Get free budgeting software and tracking tools like Personal Capital. You’re not ready to start if you don’t have a budget. Or your money will spend its way!
- A meal plan. You must tell your meals what you want to make, just like budgeting. Fast food is a temptation, but you will eat good meals at home. A meal plan makes it much easier. In a bit, I will share with you how I reduced my grocery bill by $200 from $600-$800/month with one simple trick.
- Stop paying for stuff. You can decide to stop paying for things. Here is my list of 15 items I won’t pay for. Here is a post about how I get all my household items for free, including diapers and baby wipes, pull-ups, soaps, dishwashing liquid detergent, cleaners and many more.
To increase your income, you can save money.
- Create a blog. Because it’s my favourite way to make money doing what I love and serving others, starting a blog is the first step. You should start a blog if you are passionate about helping others and sharing what you know with the world. My initial goal was to make $1,000 per month by one year.
- I ended up making $10,000 per month by one year. My life has changed dramatically. Although the results may not be typical, it is possible to learn a lot from trying. God knew what I needed, even though I didn’t realize it at the time.
Bluehost is the best choice. I have arranged a deal for you with them. This plan is the best and cheapest. However, you will need to pay upfront for all years. You can get the same plan for one year for only ONE month!
- Complete online surveys. While it won’t make you rich, it will provide income. Check out my list of 25 top survey companies.
- Sell items around your home. This post will show you how to find free things to sell. Here are 40 ideas for things that you can sell now, even if you don’t have them!
UPDATE 8/2/15 – I have been asked many times about how long ago that was. It is difficult for people to believe that it could be true today. You can find a 1 or 2 bedroom apartment in many states for as low as $350/month. Two years ago, I lived in a 1200 square foot 3 bedroom house with a fenced yard and a two-car garage. It cost $700 a month in one of the most desirable subdivisions in our region. It all depends on where you live.
There are many states that provide affordable housing. However, Oregon, Washington and Idaho are great places to start your search. If you’re struggling to make ends meet, I encourage you to consider moving to another state. These opinions will differ from one person to another. Find the best places to live by researching the cost of living in each state. You can start by taking a look at websites like.
Our family chose to live near family for a better quality of life. This isn’t unusual. If you don’t feel happy, it can mean that your entire life will be miserable. You will do anything to get there. Your family and parents would love you to be happy. Because I decided to take a chance, I moved from Cali. I am now able to live the life that I desire. It’s something that I believe in and has helped me get to where I am today.
You can see pictures of my current location on my blog. However, I will inform you that I have not accepted any monetary assistance in forever. I currently live in a five-bedroom, three-bath, three-car garage home with granite countertops and beige walls. I also have a nice fenced yard with two gardens. This is my single mom. I don’t believe that others can’t do it. It’s not possible when many people have more income than me. Society feeds you lies.
Most people will find that having both parents working is more expensive than having one parent stay at home. This is the reason for this !!!! Site. It happens, and I am living proof.
It takes effort, yes, but not more than what you are doing now. You’re just spinning your wheels and going nowhere. It’s not about making more money. They are wrong! It would help if you made your living costs as low as possible while still maintaining safety. Then, you can increase your income without it going out the window to everyone who has their hand out! You can!
Did you ever have to survive on very little? Are there any tips or tricks that you could share with others who feel stuck?
Do you want to know how I got from being homeless to all I have today? You will find detailed information, step by step. If you would like to see more, leave a comment. If enough people are interested, I will give a detailed, in-depth review of everything I have done between then and now and how you can escape your terrible situation.
**I am aware that I will be criticized for taking money from the state. I’m going to be clear. It is absolutely fine to take food stamps and government assistance if you are a low-income family. I was live on $700 a month at the time and had just escaped from a homeless shelter.
I was very grateful for their help. Since then, I have been able to get off all government assistance. I am grateful that it was available when I needed it. All comments that are derogatory or mean are not allowed on this encouraging website and will be removed. You are free to disagree as long as your comments aren’t mean. This site does not publish hateful comments.