Our Cash Confessional series, in partnership with Bank of America, takes a personal and anonymous look into how people of all ages and incomes spend their money in the span of seven days.
This week, I spoke with a 25-year-old man who makes $50,000 a year. Here’s how he spends his money. -Kylie
Position: Client Associate
Yearly salary: $50,000
Extra income: $5,000 from a part-time job.
Who do you bank with and why? I bank with Charles Schwab because I can use any ATM and get reimbursed on ATM fees. I also have two credit cards, one with Chase (for the travel rewards) and one with Citi (but I rarely use this one).
Savings: The money from my part-time job goes right into my Roth IRA so I don’t get an opportunity to spend it. I also put 10% of my paycheck into short-term savings and 6% into a Roth 401(K) with a 6% employer match.
Number of roommates: 2
Utilities: Roughly $100, depending on the energy bill.
Student loans: I’m lucky enough not to have any.
Car payments: My car is paid off, but I’m not looking forward to getting a new one here shortly.
Car insurance: $80 a month
Transportation costs: $100 a month, give or take.
Phone bill: $35. I’m still on the family plan – you can’t beat unlimited data these days.
Renters insurance: $200 yearly lump sum
Recurring donation to school: $20
Three financial goals:
In the short-term, I want to bulk up my short-term savings.
Long-term, I’m looking to put away enough for a down payment on a house. Probably five or so years from now.
Long, long, long-term, I want to buy a mountain house.
Money Diary: How I spent my money last week
Day one: Sunday
I picked up a bagel from Brueggers and took it home to top it with eggs. $1.40
Left from there to grab groceries for the week for $56.64. I racked up $12.78 in savings and another $1.25 with Ibotta. It’s a great app.
I also had to fill up the tank ($39.65) and heard Chipotle calling my name. $10.23 with chips and salsa.
Total spent: $107.92
Day two: Monday
I managed to spent nothing today. Breakfast, snack, lunch and dinner all came from my own kitchen. When I went to Mr. K’s Soft Serve with some buddies, I had enough will power not to get anything.
Total spent: $0
Day three: Tuesday
Made all three meals, plus a snack, smoothie and protein shake for rock climbing (I have a membership, so this trip was free) with stuff I already had at home.
Total spent: $0
Day four: Wednesday
I made breakfast, a mid-morning snack, lunch and afternoon smoothie with things I had at home again.
For dinner, I had a date, so I cooked dinner. $16
Total spent: $16
Day five: Thursday
As usual, breakfast, mid-morning snack, lunch and smoothie were all made at home.
Dinner was at Moosehead. I had some of the best wings in town and a few beers for $18.64.
Total spent: $18.64
Day six: Friday
Breakfast, mid-morning snack, lunch and afternoon smoothie were all, as usual, from home.
On my lunch break I went to Harris Teeter for some food for the Panthers vs. Patriots tailgate. $34.79
Speaking of Panthers vs. Patriots, I had four beers at the game ($31) and drinks after the game ($27.67).
Total spent: $93.46
Day seven: Saturday
I grabbed breakfast from Laurel Market ($11.78) before working out and finishing with a protein shake I made at home.
I spent all day hanging by the pool before picking up a six-pack for tonight’s pregame ($9.79).
Total spent: $21.57
Total spent: $257.59
Food and drink – $217.94
Transportation – $39.65
What I learned:
This was a pretty standard week for me, but I did learn that pretty much all of my money goes towards either food or alcohol. Not a great habit, but I’m young and my liver and I can take it for now. My savings goals are being reached and I still have some spending money, so things seem to be on track.
Need personal finance education? Visit Better Money Habits. Build your financial know-how with free tools and information to help you make more confident decisions. It’s a simple way of getting real, practical knowledge, brought to you by Bank of America in partnership with Khan Academy.