I was asked this morning if I wouldn’t mind posting my income, as a reference for others, here on the blog. I haven’t done so yet, because it varies from year-to-year, sometimes greatly.
For instance, last year my (work) income was about $10,000 after deductions. I do not include my daughters survivors benefits as income. I also did not count my other daughters child support in this total when she was living at home. This is just my income, what I worked for.
This income stems from anything that I can find to do. I had a back injury that prevents me from doing some things. I run a small daycare in my home. Usually no more than 4 children at a time. I also provide care sometimes during my off hours. I have also been known to clean houses and feed and take care of pets when owners were away. I type things for people. I have helped people pack when they were getting ready to move. I have also helped people to organize there homes. I do what I have to do, whenever I can, to earn money. I have sold bath and body products, and I sell scrapbooks and cards that I make – well, I am really just starting this one.
Another note: I also do not count the MaineCare(medical insurance) or the minimal foodstamps that I get as my overall income.
So, as for my (working) income, I have made anywhere from $4,000 – $10,000 a year (usually somewhere in the middle) for the past nine years.
I own my trailer (a cost or $14,000) only because my father helped me to get it. I do not have land, I have a tiny lot that I rent.
I had been receiving only $9.00 per week in child support for Skye until she turned 18 in back in November. I only use what I have to of Zowie’s survivor benefits. They SS office wants to see that the money is helping with bills, food, cleaning stuff, her clothing, etc. I do what I have to do. Unfortunately, with prices rising on everything, I have to use more now just to do what I have to do for her. I want her to have plenty of money when she goes off to college, though.
Right now foodstamps equal $121.00 per month.
$165.00 p/mo for lot rent
$9.00 p/mo for phone service
$79.00 (about) p/mo for DirecTV – Used partially for homeschooling my daughter
$30.00 (about) for internet access, etc – Used partially for homeschooling my daughter
$40.00 (about) for water/sewer
$126.00 (about) p/mo for electricity
$69.00 per month for oil (and we always have plenty leftover in the spring)
$518.00 (about) p/mo about 1/3 of which is paid from Zowie’s Survivor Benefits.
~ We each have a TracFone. I do believe that these are essential. We mostly text each other. She is a teenager now, and she is out and about a lot. We don’t live in the safest area, so we feel safer with our set-up. There are considerable fewer payphones around than their used to be, and they are not near where she hangs out. I pay for her units from her money. I pay for mine on my own when I can afford them. The TracFone is also useful in my business. I take the daycare children to the playground a lot, and their parents do not work the same exact hours each day. They can call me to see where I am, and pick their children up wherever that may be.
I also maintain a few websites and domain names that cost (total) under $100 per year. These are ones that I have set up to help low-income families, homeschooler’s, etc. As a sort of support for them. They are important.
In part 2, I will explain how we can afford to live on such a small income, what I am doing to lower bills and other stuff, and how I will still be able to live when my daughter is gone and I am no longer receiving survivors benefits for her.