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A look at a budget:

income monthly (net) $2000-2070

Mortgage(includes home owners ins and prop taxes): 1030
Food/toiletries/cleaning: 250-300
Gas for cars:120
Car ins:52
school lunches/breakfast(reduced):14
Pet food(1 sm dog 3 cats) 15
visa bill(hardship program)16
Master card:15
Family of 4 1 child under 5 receives WIC children are on Medicaid. Family is not qualified for any other gov. assistance. Adult 1 works 1 full time and 1 part time job and is enrolled in online classes so internet is a necessity. Adult 2 works just under full time and has the majority of the child rearing responsibilities to keep day care cost down but is looking for a second over night job a couple of nights a week.

Should this family receive any other help? What kids of adjustments would you make to this budget to make it work? Would you consider this family as lower or middle


Asked by Anonymous at 7:44 PM on Aug. 15, 2009 in Money & Work

This question is closed.
Answers (7)
  • OP, I understand. We've lost 60% of our income in the past 2 years due to the economy, we're a family of 7 living on the same as the family in question. I really feel for the family; I know it's not easy.

    Food stamps and other aid are meant to be a help during times of need and I'd say this is a time of need. The family in question is probably getting farther and farther into debt just to meet their bills and getting more and more depressed at the time. There's no reason for this.

    Have them look at school lunches again. Rules say that anyone making 130% of the national poverty level qualifies for free lunches. If the kids qualify for free lunches then the family very probably qualifies for food stamp benefits and maybe even energy help. They don't have to and probably won't be able to stay on the benefits once they can get their income level back up.

    Answer by michiganmom116 at 6:01 PM on Aug. 16, 2009

  • I, personally, think they need to get rid of that mortgage.. OMG, I didn't think you could be on welfare while paying that big of a mortgage.

    Move into an apartment and save about 500.00 a year, plus, save insurance and taxes!

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:53 PM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • I meant 500.00 a month!!

    Answer by Anonymous at 7:53 PM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • I wouldn't get rid of the home. You'd waste more money by renting an apartment. At least with a mortage, you will eventually own the home (and possibly your kids will inherit it).

    I don't see any other way to adjust the budget.

    I would consider you as middle class.

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:02 PM on Aug. 15, 2009

  • I would think the bank was nuts for loaning them that much when it is half their income. And no they don't deserve anymore help. They need to get better jobs or downsize the house.

    Answer by Anonymous at 2:17 AM on Aug. 16, 2009

  • Not a good budget at all. Adding all the amounts up and being VERY conservative (using the lower amounts), you're still paying out more than you're bringing in. Making less than $25,000 a year for a family of 4, definitely not in the middle class. They're just above the poverty line and that's with 3 jobs between the two adults.

    Mortgages, even including taxes and insurance, should NEVER be 50% of the budget...more like 30% at the most. I'd be very concerned; what if one of them lost a job? or got seriously ill? However, I have no idea what rental prices are where these people live so staying in the house may be less expensive than renting.

    Are they sure they wouldn't qualify for some state aid? If the kids are getting reduced lunches at school then I'm sure they'd qualify for some food benefits AT LEAST, maybe even help paying for energy costs or childcare. Worthwhile to check into it.

    Answer by michiganmom116 at 9:42 AM on Aug. 16, 2009

  • Op Adult 1 lost their job by downsizing about a year after purchasing the house. It was not owners stupidity it was the economy. The family income dropped by 16,000 a year even with adult 1 working 2 new jobs. They have looked into food stamps but do not think they qualify. Pride may be part of the fault. Who wants to go from 47,000 a year to 30,000 and being on Gov. aid. Adult 2 is looking for more work and trying to get a raise.

    Answer by Anonymous at 4:23 PM on Aug. 16, 2009

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