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A case for not working?

May 24th, 2008 at 05:31 am

I often wonder if it would be cheaper if I didn't work or only worked part-time.

Why, you ask? The associated costs of full time employment is getting more and more expensive. Outside the big ticket items, such as income tax (I read somewhere that most people work from Jan to May only to pay Uncle Sam), smaller items are suddenly not so small anymore.

For example, I thought I'd get a head start and run all my errands on Friday so I can fully enjoy the upcoming three day weekend. It was an expensive day. Here's a breakdown:

- Metro North train pass for June = $290
(station parking is an additional $120 -- I could get the monthly park pass, but there's a long waiting list and I'm still waiting)

- Drycleaning (9 items) = $50 (and that's with the 20% pre-paid discount...and no, the items were the usual stuff - shirts and slacks...and no, it was not for expedited service either)

- Groceries = $50 (I pack my lunch so I don't have to pay the NYC deli prices). Yes, the items were mostly on sale...and yes, I actually had the sense to cut and use manufacturer's coupons

- Did I mention gas? But since I just filled up two days ago for $50 (see earlier entry), I should be ok for the next two weeks

I know that working brings many other benefits, but I wonder if I can get same by working less or working from home....

7 Responses to “A case for not working?”

  1. Carolina Bound Says:

    Going from working to not working is a big pscyhological change, as well as financial. Be sure you're ready before you jump!

  2. luxlivingfrugalis Says:

    What kind of pension benefits are you accruing?

    And, can you afford to not work?

  3. thriftorama Says:

    I believe Bankrate.com has a calculator to help you figure out exactly how much your second income actually nets you after expenses and taxes. I used and discovered I was working all year only to REDUCE my family's net income by $1,000 due to a higher tax rate. As you probably guess, now work part time from home!

  4. Thrifty Ray Says:

    I made that leap a few years ago. But I had planned for it for a couple of years and had to do some heavy duty shifting to afford it (like refi the house and pay everything else off)...which worked for me but I am not recommending it to others unless they really think it through...

    I sstayed home for 2 years and took care of my parents (my dad passed away this year and I am eternally grateful that I took that time off) and I helped my kids start a business, which is very successful now.

    Then, I went back to work. Refreshed, revigorated and in a position I absolutely love.

    Staying home those two years was a wonderful decsion for me...but everyone is different. It definately was a psychological shift..but I really preferred pulling my grandson in a wagon to sitting in a board room while I did it...now I am very content being back at work.

    While setting up the kids business, it took alot of discipline to stay focused. I worked inbetween loads of laundry and had to ignore vaccumming and other household things while I worked.

    All that said, many many people are starting to make the work from home shift...so good luck with your decision. I think if you want it badly enough and are willing to do whatever it takes...it can be a very rewarding experience!!

  5. zetta Says:

    Those work/don't work calculator usually don't take retirement into account, so be sure and consider whether you'll be able to meet your retirement savings goals if you stop working. Also remember to make contingency plans for the 3 D's -- death, divorce, or disability of your spouse.

  6. ms06880 Says:

    From CT on the Cheap -- Thank you all for your comments. Your pointers are well received and to your point, there are many components to think through before I make the leap. My frustration level was at a high when I spent nearly $500 in one day for work-related stuff. But you're right, there are many tangible and non-tangible benefits to staying employed. Thank you all and enjoy the weekend!

  7. Amber Says:

    I agree this would be a huge jump, make sure it's what you want...good luck and I do understand fully, in regards to fustration being high I have been feeling that way lately

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