Money To Live

September 27, 2010

Costs associated with working full time

Filed under: career,cost analysis,spending — by moneytolive @ 5:00 am

There are extra costs involved in working outside the home — gasoline and clothing are two common examples.

For me, I would also need to find someone to walk my dog every day. To keep my sanity, I would get a grocery delivery service and a cleaning person. The cleaning costs could vary from $50-$100/ week, depending on how much we needed. I’m estimating at the higher end because in the summer we would have to pay someone to do the weeding and lawn care that I do. If I am honest with myself, I know that I won’t pack a lunch every day, and I’ll end up eating out more frequently.

I spend a non-trivial amount of time making sure that we don’t get ripped off — and it’s resulted in $2-3k of savings this year alone (disputing the purchase of flawed merchandise, holding credit card companies accountable for their advertised rewards, disputing false information on our insurance reports, …). I’ll lump that category into “extra fees” that we avoid by me having the time (and energy) to fight for the money.

To even consider taking full time work, I would need the salary to trump my current annual wages by $23k! Of course, there are some very real benefits of full-time work — employer match to retirement savings and health insurance, to name a few.

What do you think of these expenses — did I leave something out, or do you think this is ridiculous?

I’m earning $X now (where $X could swing +/- 10% in any given year), and I would really only consider working full time for $2X, which would more than cover the extra expenses. But is it worth it?



  1. Interesting! I’m inspired 😉

    My expenses from full-time or analogous out-of-home work would be: public transport ($20-30/wk), eating out ($15-20/wk) and clothing (?).

    On top of those expenses that are directly or quasi-directly linked to work, I would be spending more money on non-essential goods and services because I’d have more wriggle room for ‘extras’. E.g. on top of the eating out related to work, I might eat out more socially even if I don’t ‘have’ to; but with a lower income I would be more discerning or creative in how I socialise with friends. Also, I might invest in less extraneous things – e.g. I added up some ‘subscription’ items recently and they are significantly more than I would spend on these items without a well-paid job.

    Comment by anita — October 5, 2010 @ 1:28 pm |Reply

  2. Barring rent, regular bills and bus fares, I recently made it through one (non- full-time work) week on $3.

    Comment by anita — January 22, 2011 @ 3:03 am |Reply

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