April 7, 2017

4 Ways to Cut Down Expenses & Gain Freedom (In California)

Ever since I started college I refused to take on any debt.

So to get myself through school I would receive grants, work a bit and hustle more.

Whenever I hear that people take out loans for schooling I think about their net value.

Over $20,000 of debt means you need to spend time, years, of your own life to pay it off.

Your life doesn’t belong to you. Your life belongs to the job you have to keep in order to make those interest payments on top of paying off your debt.

But if your net value is in the green, then you have more freedom in your life. No obligations.

Since I have money in the bank and zero debt, I’m not in desperate need of keeping a job.

So here are the 4 tips that I used to cut expenses and stay green and free:

Drop the Phone Bill

Get rid of your phone service and instead use wifi apps to keep contact

Some states also offer cell phones with free service. So if you can get your hands on one, do it

I was never really into social media. Instead, to contact people I would rely on email or facebook messenger.

These days all I see are people on their phone either messing around with little game apps, wasting time on social media, or carrying on long threads of meaningless conversations with friends.

If you’re super into your phone, then put money into it.

But in my opinion, there’s no reason to carry out long-winded text conversations – use the lack of knowing what’s going on in each other’s lives to promote your social life and meet up with the person instead.

I never really carry much conversation over my phone.

I mute anyone who isn’t family/living in my immediate household or isn’t hustle/business/work-related.

Own Your Car

Don’t take out a loan to own a car.

Purchase a car with cash.

I don’t make any monthly payments on my vehicles because I bought my cars cash.

When I was 19, I went to an auction with $10,000 burning in my pocket to buy myself my very own car to drive to school.

I walked out of the auction with two cars.

My Lexus and Mercedes-Benz cost me about $2,800 average each. Both had under 70,000 miles. Great condition.

The downside was that they were both over a decade old.

But I wasn’t trying to impress people.

I was trying to get from point A to point B in something reliable that looked clean and presentable.

Just a warning: I went to a state auction. What I wasn’t expecting was to be hit by an auction fee after purchasing my vehicles.

For those of you who don’t know:

When you buy a car from a car dealership and you have to take out a car loan then,

You don’t own the car; the car owns you.

Aside from making loan payments on a car that isn’t actually yours, you also have to make premium insurance payments for that car until it’s paid off.

Those bills can really take a chunk of your cash.

I don’t have bills. And I own both of my cars.

Hell, I let gave my younger brother use my other car now that he’s in college.

Get Affordable Car Insurance

When you’re starting out on your own you’re not going to be making much money.

Unless you happen to be very lucky or extremely hardworking.

If you’re a man and you're not under anyone else’s insurance plan, then your typical insurance payments are going to be fairly high.

Well when you actually own your car you can get the bare minimum car insurance and be fine.

If you live in California, google ‘CLCA auto insurance’ or ‘California Low Cost Auto insurance program’.

If you’re living on grants/scholarships and working a part-time job, then you shouldn’t be making very much money. You may qualify.

Pay your insurance all at once. It’s a cheaper route than making payments.

I currently pay $302 for a year of coverage.

Yes, my coverage is considered minimum.

But I have an older car. I’m not attached to any ‘image’ it gives me. The minimum is all I need.

My opinion on ‘image luxuries’ is that, if you aren’t making the big money yet, then learn to live small until you do.

Owning luxuries when you aren’t making big money is like losing yourself just to look cool for other people.

When you earn enough to laugh at the expenses that come with such luxuries, then get them.

Get an Affordable Room/Apartment for Rent

If you’re still trying to make it out in the world, you should have a low rent expense.

I currently pay $350 for rent. I have a huge room and my own bathroom, as well as access to a huge kitchen and living area. I also use and keep my exercise equipment in the spacious backyard. The neighborhood is also very nice.

Find a place to rent with friends or a cheap studio apartment.

Have your rent as low as possible so that you can spend your money on other assets.

It sucks ass when your rent takes too much of your money.

When your rent feels unaffordable, so does living. That can be depressing.

Find affordable housing, and be willing to pay more for a safer area.

No point in living in a bad area for cheap if the neighbors are just going to slash your tires.

Split rent to make it easier. Find friends, and build your relationships with them.

Final Checkpoint

In short, make sure you get your net value in the green. Life simply feels better that way.

Drop the phone bill, you will not only save money, but you may find more productive things to do with your time.

Own your car, even if it’s a little older. So long as it’s nice and reliable, you have what you need.

And by owning your car, you don’t have to worry so much about your insurance.

You aren’t forced to pay premium to protect something that is brand spankin’ expensive new.

Rent an affordable home that costs as little as possible but is still presentable and in a nice area.

Safety is worth the money.

Split rent if you have to, because rent will be one of the very few expenses that you will essentially always have to pay in some shape or form to make a living.


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2 comments on “4 Ways to Cut Down Expenses & Gain Freedom (In California)”

  1. Good post, I say cutting down in any situation will improve your life. The minimalist lifestyle is the way to go.

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