Reading Time: 8 Min
From a $267K legal sex worker in NV to an $85K management consultant in Hong Kong to a $30K food technician in Chicago, here’s a sneak peek into how others live.
I love reading about other peoples’ lives and how they prioritize their spending. If you’re like me, Refinery 29 has put together a great series of of money diaries which profile a week in the lives of folks from all walks of life. Below are a few of my favorites, with some observations I had reading through them.
This profile was very interesting to me because the setting of her story (NYC) and her routines mirrored mine pretty closely four or five years ago. I lived on about $24k a year when I was starting out in the city. It looks like she’s been able to keep her monthly expenses about the same, excluding her student loans. Her total delineated monthly expenses total $26,313.72.
As I look at what she spends her money on monthly, it’s clear she’s being pretty careful about extraneous expenses. I admire that.
There’s some detail missing to be able to true up to her total salary. She says she only automatically saves $75 but is often able to put several hundred away. Given the delta between her income and listed expenses, she should presumably be able to put about $12k a year away in after-tax savings, or $1k a month. That doesn’t take into account the roughly $10k in bonuses she says she gets each year.
What saddens me the most about this account is how little she contributes to her 401k. She puts $162 a month into her 401k and her company matches, which is a contribution of $324 a month, or $3.8k a year. The maximum 401k