Why I Moved Back Home
Moving out is the defining moment of independent adulthood. As a teenager, most are desperate to spread their wings and explore the world. To fly freely and to chart their own course So what is the rational behind leaving the nest only to return?
Mine was this: It is stupid expensive out there.
Granted there are some disclosures I want to provide since I pride myself on being an open book.
I have the luxury of being a white female in the United States. Though white women make 80 cents to every man's dollar, I have been strategic in my career and make more than double the national average for my age.
I am receiving an advanced degree and have no student loans thanks to a generous mother and grandfather. As well as scholarships and grants helping keep the tuition down.
I am lucky to have a support family who would (and have) open their home, wallet and arms if I was ever in financial trouble.
That being said I should probably tell why I moved back home.
I have lived in Boston since 2011. I wanted to pursue my bachelors and live in a big city, away from the nest (so to speak). There was also some strategic thought behind this: I would be not only be able to leave the nest but to be able to get part time jobs, internships and then full time positions more easily than if I stayed back in Connecticut. Fast forward through recieving my B.A. in Business Management, a short lived career through hedge fund accounting, a few major life turning points, I decided to go back to school for something a bit more fulfilling and pursue a career in UX/UI.
Shameless Self Promo : I am currently accepting clients for UX/UI, graphic design, market analysis and branding consultations over at my design website. You can directly email me at
After living in Boston for 7 years, working jobs that were $14 dollars an hour to $65,000 a year, I had a growing sense that this would be unsustainable and that I would not be able to live the life I wanted to live. You're probably wanting to strangle me through the computer screen right now: I'm making double the national average, I live in a trendy city with everything at my disposal, I have no debt and a fantastic career. I get it. I am beyond blessed but there are some things to consider...
I lived with roommates for 7 years straight.
My rent was $845 a month with utilities averaging around $100.
Groceries are stupid expensive in Boston as well as eating out since I had no time to cook.
Though I didn't have a car, the T (public subway) was $85 a month.
Here's an actual breakdown of my spending to income right before I decided to move back:
As you can see, I spent most of the money I was making. The harder I worked, the more expenses came up to support that work. Longer hours meant less cooking at home, more commuting meant more transportation costs and the list goes on and on.
Another disclosure: my father was helping me out with rent which added another $500 a month to my income which is included in the $804.52. Without it, I would be only saving $304.52 for the month of April.
Some people don't even have the luxury of even saving a dime and I didn't want that to be me. So I did what I thought was in my best interest: to move back home. It's been a month and I can say I already learned some hard lessons and have some advice.
Just because you have free rent, don't spend the extra money that's in your wallet.
I went crazy within the first month... As you can tell from the snapshot of my mint.com account below.
Here is my Net Income for the month of July. You can see it took a hit when I transferred some major money out of my savings for a down payment on my first car ever. I do wish I bought a clunker instead of a brand new car but I don't regret my decision looking back on it. I also spent some major dough on clothes that I didn't buy before cause I was trying to save money while living in Boston.
Make sure that if your parents (*cough cough*.... roommates as I like to call them) are footing everything that you show your appreciation in other ways.
My mom and stepfather were gracious enough to let me move back in. Though it can be annoying at times to feel like your a child that has to answer where you are at all times, in the end it's helping me out tremendously. They didn't ask and won't accept money towards their mortgage or utilities so I have been doing most of the grocery shopping and making most of the meals to say thank you. This is one of the best ideas I have ever had.
Make a game plan.
I did not do this when I first moved back. I didn't set up my 401k right away, I didn't give myself an amount to save up each month... I just thought I will worry about it later.
Now I am putting in the effort, giving myself timeframes and limits and going above and beyond to try to reach my goals.
You can read my game plan here.
Lastly, money doesn't buy you happiness.
As a child, I always thought that if I was able to make a ton of money and work hard that happiness would find me. Now looking back, I realized how flawed t hat mentality was. If you dream about buying things, that's all you'll ever have is just things. I now make it a priority to focus on my career, my family, my relationship, my health and fitness and those are more fulfilling that anything I could ever buy.
Thank you so much for staying with me until the end of this post. I have some awesome things planned for this blog and to document a life of financial bliss. I hope you'll stick around for the ride.