Living poor to living middle class! - page 3

:balloons: :balloons: I graduate in May, and I am so ready to begin making a decent living for a change. True enough I did not go into nursing just for the money, but it sure does help make my life a... Read More

  1. by   keishahu
    well the big day has finally arrived!!!! Graduation is May 10, 2007. I have definitely struggled. I didnt know how I would pay rent, car note or College but its over. So excited to go from making about 8,000 to 72,000 (live in NY). Im glad I read this forum. The first thing I wanted to do was trade this car in and just have fun for once. I will try to be smarter. I have so much debt that I want to pay off. Lord knows what that credit report looks like. Im just glad its over. Now I can breathe and relax for once
  2. by   NotReady4PrimeTime
    Congratulations!! Please be careful with your new-found wealth and freedom for a while. Hard times can still be lurking!
  3. by   kurlyy1
    Well I have a question for you...I have a job I love right now as manager of a weight loss clinic. Now that I have passed the boards I am ready to start nursing, but REALLY hesitant to leave the job I love SO much! Especially if I make a similar income at nursing.

    My question is...and I have had a hard time really finding this out for some reason...is how comparable IS the salary??? I currently make 36K to 40K a year, closer to 36K but the possibility for increase is definately there. I have been offered a job with a base pay of $20.75/hour. I will be working NOC shift (10% diff) and do rotating weekends, but I do not plan on working much OT unless I have no choice as I am a single mother of 2 and time with them is most important to me. I have no idea what to expect that check to look like after taxes and everything else is taken out and am scared that net pay might be less than my current net pay (which is roughly $1300/check but sometimes up to $1600 with monthly bonus, commisions, ect...)

    Do you have any idea what I can expect?? I would appreciate ANY input on this PLEASE. Thank you very much in advance (-:
    Quote from mjlrn97
    Welcome to my world..........:spin:

    I'm going to give you some advice, because I've been exactly where you are now and lived to regret my excesses---of work, of spending, of expectations that were never met.

    First of all, please don't assume that money will end all your troubles, or change you into a different person, or give you security. For many of us who have lived in poverty, a sudden infusion of relative large amounts of cash makes us throw caution to the wind: "Yippee!!" we shout as we hand over our shiny new Discover cards for yet another "delayed- gratification" reward to ourselves. We think all our troubles will just vanish and we'll always have enough to live on, and then some.......little do we know of the pitfalls that await us!

    What we don't realize is that we have no clue whatsoever as to how to manage those princely sums we're earning. Many of us, myself included, have spent our way into bankruptcy.........and more than once! Somehow, the 'needs' always seem to expand to fit, and usually exceed, the available funds. I managed my family's money wonderfully when I only had about $12,000 a year to manage........ by the time that income quintupled, only a few years later, we were so deep in hock we couldn't find our way out with a five-cell flashlight and a traffic cop directing signals.

    The other thing is, NO job/career is perfect. Yes, I think nursing is a rewarding vocation in many ways, which is why I'm still doing it ten years after graduation; but I've had a lot of ups and downs in my various jobs, and I think if I were given the chance to do something else that pays similar (or better) wages without demanding so much of my time and energy, I would move on.

    I wish you the best in your future. Just try to be realistic about what you can accomplish with the money you make, and don't expect your career to fulfill your every dream. Keep your work life and your home/social life in balance. Keep up with your other interests outside of work, and above all, strive to be happy.

    Good luck.:spin:
  4. by   kurlyy1
    Quote from lillady1225
    I felt exactly how you are feeling now, but boy was I wrong. Yes I do make a decent salary but when I factor in all my expenses I was living better (for lack of a better word) before I graduated than I am now. I don't know your situation but I am a single mother of a 2 year old girl. When I was in school I recieved food stamps and the state paid for most of my daughter's daycare bill. By the way I was in school full time and worked part time. Now that I am employed as a nurse and my income has gone up I recieve no help from the state at all. I make 17.35 an hour which equals about 2200 a month after taxes. After Credit card bills, rent, utilities, a car payment which is only $250, and a !!!!$750 daycare bill!!!!! I barely have any money left at the end of the month and I don't spend my money loosely and I never buy extravagant things. I know I am in a better position than many people out there and I know public assistance is for those truely poor families, as it should be. But with quality childcare being as expensive as it is, a lot of people, including myself, are having to make the choice between going back on public aid or struggling to make ends meet while working full time. Sometimes, when you're middle class you make too much to qualify for help but not enough to live comfortabley. I worked so hard to graduate from college, get my BSN and make a better life for my daughter but I really fell like as I made one step foward somebody pulled me back two.
    Sorry for the long post but I really needed to let that out.
    Wow. I can completely relate to YOU!!! I am the single mother of 2, and it seems I had money for shopping and other little things from time to time as a student. Groceries weren't the constant struggle they are now because I recieved food stamps, and oh my gosh the daycare fees for a baby are insane!! Before I recieved help from gov. for daycare and food, not to mention Medicaid. Now between all the bills and everything else I am often broke 2 days after payday each pay period...:uhoh21: Hang in there!! We can always go back to school! That is what I plan on doing in about 5 years or so.
  5. by   linzz
    Something I have had to learn the hard way is not buy anything on credit unless it is an absolute necessity such as housing, transportation, your nursing education. Nothing eats up your income faster than bad debt. As the other poster said, hard times may still be in the future and you won't be able to manage them if you have too much debt, so save for a rainy day.
  6. by   Mommy TeleRN
    Kurly - I would compare GROSS. If you withhold the same taxes your net income should come out the same..all else being equal so of course you would need to compare insurance premiums too. Does one or the other pay student loans? Tuition reimbursement? Any other perks?

    Let's figure it:
    20.75 + 2.08 * 36 * 52= 42,738

    Any weekend diffs?

    That is at 36 hrs. I am guessing your current job is 40 hrs. You could pick up one extra shift a month to come out to still less hours. Let's say it was 4 hr reg pay and 8 hr OT - that would come out to: $357 for that one shift, or $4284 year. You are looking at over 47,000 year gross for an avg of ~ 39 hrs a week. That is assuming no weekend diff (where I work weekend diff would be the same as night diff, stacked) Work a holiday get premium pay. Work a short shift, more premium pay. There are many ways to pick up extra $ in nursing that you don't have other jobs.

    Hope that helps some!

    Quote from kurlyy1
    Well I have a question for you...I have a job I love right now as manager of a weight loss clinic. Now that I have passed the boards I am ready to start nursing, but REALLY hesitant to leave the job I love SO much! Especially if I make a similar income at nursing.

    My question is...and I have had a hard time really finding this out for some reason...is how comparable IS the salary??? I currently make 36K to 40K a year, closer to 36K but the possibility for increase is definately there. I have been offered a job with a base pay of $20.75/hour. I will be working NOC shift (10% diff) and do rotating weekends, but I do not plan on working much OT unless I have no choice as I am a single mother of 2 and time with them is most important to me. I have no idea what to expect that check to look like after taxes and everything else is taken out and am scared that net pay might be less than my current net pay (which is roughly $1300/check but sometimes up to $1600 with monthly bonus, commisions, ect...)

    Do you have any idea what I can expect?? I would appreciate ANY input on this PLEASE. Thank you very much in advance (-:
  7. by   kurlyy1
    Thank you so much MommyNurse2be! I guess I have had so much on my mind I just couldn't think straight to break it all down simply, but it definately seems I'll be better off, of couse, with the nursing position offered to me.

    No I don't have any insurance at current job so I am not used to those extra benefits being taken out of my check (I have never had a job w/benefits before!). There is no student loan repayment, no sign on bonus, but there is tuition reimbursement should I choose to go back to school.

    Thanks again!!
  8. by   GrnHonu99
    Quote from rn2bn07
    I graduate in May, and I am so ready to begin making a decent living for a change. True enough I did not go into nursing just for the money, but it sure does help make my life a little better. I am tired of struggling wondering how I am going to pay a bill and feed my family. In another month all my worries will be over. I read a lot threads stating that they want to quit in their first year. I guess, my question is, is it really that bad that you would want to give up your dream career because of the stress that you will probably experience from any other job?
    No way!!! Im in my first year...started orientation sept. 9th and was on my own Dec. 12th 06. Its been crazy but awesome!!! Let me tell you how much it sucked in NS as I didnt work and we lived on my fiances bartender salary. It was awful! We were so poor and now we arent rich by any means but we sure dont have to worry about paying bills anymore! Its great!!! Im lovin lovin lovin it!
  9. by   AnnieOaklyRN
    hi,

    I just graduated, passed my boards, and will start work... The first thing on my list of things to buy is a condo, does anyone think this is a bad move???? I have fairly good credit, only debt is my student loan from nursing school, have a car payment, insurance, and cell phone for bills... Should I go for it??? My first time buying such a large item.

    Any advise from you wiser folks with more living experience?

    Swtooth EMT-P, RN
  10. by   Lisa CCU RN
    Quote from swtoothRN
    hi,

    I just graduated, passed my boards, and will start work... The first thing on my list of things to buy is a condo, does anyone think this is a bad move???? I have fairly good credit, only debt is my student loan from nursing school, have a car payment, insurance, and cell phone for bills... Should I go for it??? My first time buying such a large item.

    Any advise from you wiser folks with more living experience?

    Swtooth EMT-P, RN
    I might give myself six months to save up an emergency fund, but otherwise it sounds like a good idea.
  11. by   Imafloat
    Quote from swtoothRN
    hi,

    I just graduated, passed my boards, and will start work... The first thing on my list of things to buy is a condo, does anyone think this is a bad move???? I have fairly good credit, only debt is my student loan from nursing school, have a car payment, insurance, and cell phone for bills... Should I go for it??? My first time buying such a large item.

    Any advise from you wiser folks with more living experience?

    Swtooth EMT-P, RN
    Congrats on passing boards!

    Do you have a down payment saved up or an emergency fund? Good luck!
  12. by   melinda lee
    hey im tellen you im an lpn moven to texas have kids and i know im still not gonna make enough i think sometimes is it really worth all the trouble i went threw with shool?they tell me the wages are as high as i expeccted.:angryfire
  13. by   peds4now
    Living poor means living in fear: fear of not being able to buy food, pay the rent, do the laundry. The thing I'm looking forward to the most is being able to not live in fear.

    As new grads with rising incomes, we have the amazing chance to face our finances head on and have hope. I recommend to any and all new grads that between passing the NCLEX and starting your new job you go to the library (i.e., FREE) and check out all the self-help financial planning books you can find. Read a bunch and you will hit on the real, true advice and be able to pick out the crap with your awesome critical thinking skills! You can now choose to make good choices with your money. You can walk past sales or car dealer billboards and decide that YES, you have the money, but NO, that is not what you choose to do with it. Spend your time tweaking your budget in excel. Here's some of my plans:

    max out on the 403(b)
    max out on flex plans (I have 6 kids)
    opened a new account for irregular but predictable expenses (car registration, kids summer camp, clothing, school supplies, etc.), where I will deposit monthly the total I expect to pay on these things a year/12
    Aim to spend 70% or less of my gross income on committed expenses, things I can't cut back on no matter what (rent, utilities, daycare and school tuitions, tax withholdings, student loans)

    Unfortunatlely I have debt to pay off and lots of expenses because I chose a large family, but next year the savings for a house will start.

    Good luck everybody!!!!! Empower yourself to make good decisions with your newfound wealth! We also have a great profession in that oftentimes we can choose to pick up an extra shift in a pay period to boost our income just for fun!

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