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Thread: RV living here we come!

  1. #1
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    RV living here we come!

    Hey everyone! I am simplifying my life by selling a bunch of my junk, living in an RV, and working as a traveling speech-language pathologist. My husband and I are hoping to use this experience to 1) have some amazing adventures and 2) save enough money to buy a house before having kids. Excited to be part of this forum!
    Personal finance and budget travel blogger at Money and Mountains. My husband and I are living in an RV while he works remotely and I work as a traveling speech-language pathologist.

  2. #2
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    Please share your travels and the surprises that delight along the way. Have fun!
    Gandhi: Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony .

  3. #3
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    Welcome, sounds like a great adventure.

  4. #4
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    I followed the link to the "amazing adventures", and I read your account of crushing the $40,000 student loan and the $22,000 car loans. Well done. I love your approach of living on one spouse's income and paying off debt with the other spouse's income (plus any side hustle income). Radical!

    Also I totally agree with your 14 benefits of budgeting.

    I might have missed it, but do you base your budgeting and spending on a "common pot" basis? (That is what we practice. We live in a community property state, so each spouse has a legal right to 50% of everything the other spouse makes, no matter how unequal the incomes (or participation) may be. With our common pot two spouses are spending from one account which receives 100% of the combined household income. However, the division of labor is such that the job of budgeting and bill-paying is handled by one spouse. In our case, there is a standing offer for the job to be reassigned to the other, at any time that either spouse wants the change. The job could be either put or taken by either spouse, but it has not been put or taken in all the years that we have been married.)

    Inevitably the one with the job will need to ask, "What was this spending or ATM withdrawal for, exactly?" In my experience timing and tact are vital, so that the question is not perceived as over-controlling. It may violate budgeting principles, but to keep the peace it could be an option to reply, "It's none of your business." And to accommodate unaccountable spending, there can be a budget spending category called "Unaccountable". I strive to keep Unacccountable under 50% of the total spending. <wink>.

    I know some people prefer to operate on a "his and hers" basis, each contributing an agreed portion of their income to common expenses, but also having separate checking accounts for their income and for spending on their personal needs … This way, both spouses are able to spend on goods and services without the knowledge or approval of the other spouse.

    In my view, neither approach would be superior for all. Couples simply need to choose which fits best for themselves. Sometimes it is preferable to be contented than to be totally accurate with the family budgeting.
    Last edited by dado potato; 3-31-19 at 2:17pm.

  5. #5
    Senior Member SteveinMN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dado potato View Post
    Inevitably the one with the job will need to ask, "What was this spending or ATM withdrawal for, exactly?"
    This is the approach DW and I use. Well, most times. We each have "slush fund" bank accounts containing a couple hundred dollars for which we are solely accountable. Household expenses are not made from these accounts and they are filled either with an agreed-upon portion of income or by selling surplus items, doing side hustles, etc. But there still are charges on credit card statements or checks written which are not recognizable/categorizable to me (the partner that does the tracking). Generally asking resolves the matter ("Oh, I wrote that check to Mavis for Betty's retirement gift.") But I've been told on more than one occasion to just pay the bill and not ask further (the credit card statement usually reads "Amazon" for those ). If it's not way out of expectation I let it roll. DW is an adult, earns sufficient money, and neither one of us is a spendthrift. I don't like categorizing the spend as "Miscellaneous" but it's better than not tracking it at all (Miscellaneous can become a surprisingly large category) or micromanaging an adult's spending.

    MandM, good luck on this chapter of your lives together!
    Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome. - Booker T. Washington

  6. #6
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    We've been together since we were teens when we didn't 'have a pot to piss in' as my oldest sister likes to say. So $ has always been a single pot. As Dado describes, the household jobs can change upon request. However, after 39 years I still am the accountancy. Because we track every penny, I do ask "what was $82.66 to XX for" so that I can categorize. We don't question each other on expenditures. Our house agreement for more than 20y is "if it's over $100 let's talk about it". It works for us.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by razz View Post
    Please share your travels and the surprises that delight along the way. Have fun!
    Thanks! I will definitely have to drop some of those in here! I will also be blogging about them fairly regularly. Feel free to check out my blog, Money and Mountains and jump on my mailing list to stay up to date
    Personal finance and budget travel blogger at Money and Mountains. My husband and I are living in an RV while he works remotely and I work as a traveling speech-language pathologist.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by dado potato View Post
    I followed the link to the "amazing adventures", and I read your account of crushing the $40,000 student loan and the $22,000 car loans. Well done. I love your approach of living on one spouse's income and paying off debt with the other spouse's income (plus any side hustle income). Radical!

    Also I totally agree with your 14 benefits of budgeting.

    I might have missed it, but do you base your budgeting and spending on a "common pot" basis? (That is what we practice. We live in a community property state, so each spouse has a legal right to 50% of everything the other spouse makes, no matter how unequal the incomes (or participation) may be. With our common pot two spouses are spending from one account which receives 100% of the combined household income. However, the division of labor is that the job of budgeting and bill-paying is handled by one spouse. In our case, there is a standing offer for the job to be reassigned to the other at any time that either spouse wants the change. The job could be either put or taken by either spouse, but it has not been put or taken in all the years that we have been married.)

    Inevitably the one with the job will need to ask, "What was this spending or ATM withdrawal for, exactly?" In my experience timing and tact are vital, so that the question is not perceived as over-controlling. It may violate budgeting principles, but to keep the peace it could be an option to reply, "It's none of your business." And to accommodate unaccountable spending, there can be a budget spending category called "Unaccountable". I strive to keep Unacccountable under 50% of the total spending. <wink>.

    I know some people prefer to operate on a "his and hers" basis, each contributing an agreed portion of their income to common expenses, but also having separate checking accounts for their income and for spending on their personal needs … This way, both spouses are able to spend on goods and services without the knowledge or approval of the other spouse.

    In my view, neither approach would be superior for all. Couples simply need to choose which fits best for themselves. Sometimes it is preferable to be contented than to be totally accurate with the family budgeting.
    Thanks so much for the positive feedback! I really appreciate it. We are definitely proud of knocking out all that debt and it has set us up so much better for the future!

    For budgeting, my husband and I have combined our incomes 100%. We each get a certain amount of spending money every month that we can choose to spend or save up for a bigger purchase. Because I am a natural saver and don't feel the need to spend as much money, I get $30 a month and my husband gets $80 a month because he likes spending a bit more. It was my suggestion to give him more than me so I don't feel like it is "unfair". I would rather be saving more .

    For all bills and everything, we just take from our shared bank account and have since we got married. Our paychecks both go into that account. When we were first married I was in grad school for 2 years and finances were always all "ours" even though I was contributing nothing financially. Now we make about the same amount, but with my new travel job starting soon, I will be making more. We will still combine all finances.

    I know that won't work for everyone, but I feel since money can be such a big point of contention in a marriage that having our finances combined and not feeling resentful of one or the other for earning less at various points in our marriage has been such a good thing for us.

    I do ask my husband about purchases just so I can track everything and know where our money is going, but it is not to "keep track of him". We both work together every month at the beginning to go over expenses that will be coming up so neither of us is caught off guard. It works well and helps us plan ahead.
    Personal finance and budget travel blogger at Money and Mountains. My husband and I are living in an RV while he works remotely and I work as a traveling speech-language pathologist.

  9. #9
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    We go over purchases as well to make sure we are tracking everything and categorizing it all correctly as well. I think that is so important for a successful budget. You can't find ways to save more money if you don't know where it is going in the first place! And we also discuss larger purchases. But we also each get some "spending money" every month so we don't have to feel guilty about doing something for ourselves every now and then.
    Personal finance and budget travel blogger at Money and Mountains. My husband and I are living in an RV while he works remotely and I work as a traveling speech-language pathologist.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveinMN View Post
    This is the approach DW and I use. Well, most times. We each have "slush fund" bank accounts containing a couple hundred dollars for which we are solely accountable. Household expenses are not made from these accounts and they are filled either with an agreed-upon portion of income or by selling surplus items, doing side hustles, etc. But there still are charges on credit card statements or checks written which are not recognizable/categorizable to me (the partner that does the tracking). Generally asking resolves the matter ("Oh, I wrote that check to Mavis for Betty's retirement gift.") But I've been told on more than one occasion to just pay the bill and not ask further (the credit card statement usually reads "Amazon" for those ). If it's not way out of expectation I let it roll. DW is an adult, earns sufficient money, and neither one of us is a spendthrift. I don't like categorizing the spend as "Miscellaneous" but it's better than not tracking it at all (Miscellaneous can become a surprisingly large category) or micromanaging an adult's spending.

    MandM, good luck on this chapter of your lives together!
    Yes, we categorize everything although we too have a miscellaneous category. We share all of our finances 100% and haven't had any money issues which has been great.

    Thank you so much! We are excited about this adventure. I actually grew up in Minnesota and lived there until I went to grad school. I definitely miss it! It's a great state!
    Personal finance and budget travel blogger at Money and Mountains. My husband and I are living in an RV while he works remotely and I work as a traveling speech-language pathologist.

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