450 sq. ft. studio in DC, housing 2 people and 1 cat averages about $22/month. We managed to get through the last two winters without turning on the heat though, which I think has helped, and we also never put the AC below 75 or keep it on more than 12 hrs/day.
Friday: $42 on pizza (I paid for the whole group) Saturday: $43 on groceries Total: $85. Not bad, but not great either!
@Beezus Poor kitty! I hope he/she's okay now? In any case, that's exactly what we save money for - so that when the emergencies inevitably happen, we can cover them. So, in a way, you didn't go $800 over at all - you've been (unknowingly) saving up for just that emergency. Also, sounds like you love your kitty a lot, which makes you an A+ person no matter what.
@stuffisthings Your anecdote about the Hangout makes me feel a lot better about my own technological none-how.
@OllyOlly EFX Salon in Silver Spring is about $40 a cut, including a pre-cut shampoo. Everyone is very nice, and it is also in close proximity to the best Indian place I've ever been to (Jewel of India), so double-win!
Personally, I'm surprised by how many people are surprised by the revelation of PRISM. Section 215 of the PATRIOT ACT makes this type of surveillance explicitly legal for the federal government to do, so why in the world did anyone in the U.S. think the government wouldn't go ahead and do it? It's not the government who's the ultimate problem here, but the citizenry who elected representatives who voted the PATRIOT ACT in, and then voted again and again to extend it in its original form. The blame lies at our own feet.
I didn't estimate, but did try to keep it low since I spent a ton of money during the week. Spent about $22 on take out and $3.50 on laundry, for a grand total of $25.50. If only I could do this every weekend!
@totallyunoriginal Part of my last move was decided upon my proximity to a Wegman's. Reasons for my adoration: 1. Cheese bar 2. Olive bar 3. Regular section, organic section, and gluten-free section all separated and easy to navigate 4. Produce selection is by far the best in the area 5. The prices are CHEAP. Even for name brand products. 6. As @aperson said, the bakery and buffet-style eat-in area is amazing (though yes, the Chinese food is not all that great; the subs and salads are where it's at) 7. They consistently rank high in employee satisfaction, and it shows in how kind and helpful their employees are 8. Their store brand pizzas are the best bake-at-home pizza I've ever had, at about $3/pizza 9. Their carts are multi-level squares rather than the typical big rectangle style, which my short arms appreciate 10. The in-store lighting (at least at my Wegman's) is soft lighting and doesn't hurt my eyes like the nearby Giant's lighting does 11. They have sample tables around the store most weekends 12. They stay open til midnight every day of the week 13. They provide H&R tax people during tax season to answer questions (a la Walmarts) 14. Their customer service area is top-notch (example: deleting a double charge on my receipt and refunding me the money with zero ado) 15. When I first got my cat and had a question about what cats foods they'd recommend from their selection, they sent not 1 but 3 (!) employees who all had cats to meet me in the pets aisle and we had a 15 minute discussion about cat foods (price, wet v. dry, etc.) which was very helpful and informative @minijen I do not know anything about Publix but, probably?
On Open Thread
@stuffisthings You can definitely skip the 3D version; it wasn't worth it at all.
Co-signed. I worked three jobs and took the max load of classes in order to graduate in 3 years so I could finish undergrad debt-free, and I almost made it ($3k). My motivation was mostly because I knew I wanted to go to grad school and that I would have to take out loans to do it. Even then, I worked two jobs all through grad school and graduated with $25k less in loans than I had originally calculated. I think putting a cap on "living expenses" loans wouldn't be a bad idea. Perhaps it can be related to the estimated cost of living in the city the student is attending school? I think having $50/wk or so to spend on "fun" things is more than enough for most college students, especially when one considers the plethora of free events available at most schools.