affordable apartment with rn salary

  1. I want to move to an apartment after I graduate this May with rent at about $3000/month. My salary will be $75,000/year (before they take out money). I won't be allowed to work over time at first because it's a residency program.

    What ill save on: I have a car but from this apartment I can walk to the hospital for work, it's about 1 block away. My aunt can watch my dog for free.

    I also want graduate school and will take out loans. I have no student loans from undergraduate. The hospital I'll be employed at gives money for grad school (5k a semester) and scholarships.


    Do you guys think this apartment is affordable? Is it realistic I could even save money? I'm trying to think cost of everything. .and I figured I'd ask because those who lived on your rn salary will have an idea..thank you.
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  2. Visit direw0lf profile page

    About direw0lf

    Joined: Dec '14; Posts: 969; Likes: 1,017

    42 Comments

  3. by   Sandpiper12
    Even if you took home EVERY penny of the 75,000, a $3000/month apartment is just about 50% of your take home pay. You need to figure out all your expenses:
    Housing, Groceries, Bills, eating out, car payment (if you have one), etc. I'd take a look at how much you spend right now to figure these things out.

    I personally would not be comfortable spending that much on an apartment - can you get a roommate? I'd much rather spend less on an apartment, and be able to save money.
  4. by   FutureNurseInfo
    Let's say on average (including taxes, and all withholdings) you pay 30% on taxes and withholdings. That means you take home $52500 home. That comes to $4375 per month. If you spend $3000 on rent, that leaves you with measly $1375! I do not know which state you reside in, but in NYC you cannot even feed a goldfish on $1375 a month.
  5. by   Triddin
    Goodness you can even get cheaper rent in Vancouver than that. I have friends who rent an entire house and pay less than that... i wouldn't pay that much.

    Try making a realistic budget of food costs, utilities, toiletries, savings and entertainment. That should give you an idea of how much to spend in rent.
  6. by   WanderingWilder
    Sorry, but I don't think it will be affordable. The recommendation is that your housing should cost no more the 30% of your income, preferably 25%. At 30% you should be looking for a place around 1500 a month.
  7. by   Wuzzie
    Housing should only take up about 1/3 of your take home pay. What is the average cost of an apartment in your area?

    And FTR: I make a lot more than you and I have an entire house in a nice neighborhood in a very large city for less than half of what you're thinking about paying.
  8. by   Rondo
    Would you feel comfortable explaining to us what your job is that pays you such a high rate? NP? CRNA? Or something entirely unrelated to nursing?
  9. by   verene
    Quote from Rondo
    Would you feel comfortable explaining to us what your job is that pays you such a high rate? NP? CRNA? Or something entirely unrelated to nursing?
    75K/year isn't unrealistic for an acute care RN working full-time night shift in a high cost of living city. My new grad job works out to about 63K/year pre-tax working day shift with no overtime, and I don't work at the highest paying facility in my metro area, and only a moderately high COL area.

    To OP: Try to see if you can find an apartment for less than 3K/month. 3K/month works out to 35K/year or slightly under 50% of your pre-tax pay. That ratio will likely leave you feeling financially stressed, and "housing insecure" on what many would consider a very nice income. If you take the rule of thumb that rent should be about 1/3 of your income or less that means you should be looking for apartments for $1,800/month or less.

    I do recognize in some metro areas it can be very difficult to find affordable housing in close proximity to work, and getting all the way down to 1/3 of pay or less could be difficult, but I really urge you to create some mock budgets. What does it cost for cable? Electric? Health insurance etc? How much do you spend on food each month? Going out with friends/travel? How much do you want to be saving each month? Any debts/loans - what are the monthly payments there? Figure out all of your likely monthly expenses (including sending money to savings) and then figure out how much you can realistically spend on housing. If you really can't find cheaper housing, look at every other place in your budget you can cut money, or really evaluate the cost/benefit of living close to work vs further out with lower rents.
  10. by   thatgirl2478
    The 'rule of thumb' is that your housing (all of it, rent, utilities, insurance) shouldn't be more than 1/3 of your TAKE HOME pay - which will be a lot less than 75k since you'll have to pay:

    401k (you should start saving for retirement NOW)
    Health Benefits - medical/dental/vision
    Life Insurance (if you have someone counting on your income)
    SS & Medicare deductions
    Federal & State Taxes

    Before all that you're looking at about $2500 per pay period - so you need to account for a variety of deductions BEFORE you sign a lease.

    Then you have to account for a variety of other expenses:

    Transportation - bus/train/car - if a car then buying the car, saving for repairs, gas and insurance
    Food
    Utilities
    Loan repayment
    Rainy Day savings
    Entertainment
    Clothing
    Hair cuts
    Personal stuff

    It adds up. If you can find a cheaper place or get a reliable room mate, do it!
  11. by   thatgirl2478
    Oh and I WISH RN's started out at $75k here! We barely even hit $50k :/ oh well.
  12. by   Guy in Babyland
    Quote from thatgirl2478
    Oh and I WISH RN's started out at $75k here! We barely even hit $50k :/ oh well.
    But you are not paying $3k/mo in rent (I hope).
  13. by   Wannabenurseneko
    That is way too much for an apartment are you sure you can't find anything cheaper, or get a realtor to help you get your apartment price down for you ?.
  14. by   direw0lf
    Thanks for the replies all! Some great advice that I appreciate. I'm disappointed but there are other options and it doesn't make sense to pay so much when I could go cheaper. I just really liked this one, it's in a nice city, train station nearby, parks, stores, hospital in walking distance was really a plus, and apartment has to allow dogs.
    It is in North NJ, new grad salary for this hospital is 75k for the residency program well I was offered $37/hour and I can't do over time for a year. I'll have my bsn.
    I've done a lot of searching around with cities out of state and in NJ to relocate to, NJ salary is high but compared to cost of living it doesn't even out so much. I like the area though. I'm still considering all my options. Right now I don't like where I live and knowing I have choices to move to soon is exciting!

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