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Living on $12,000 a year



  • Reading some of these posts, does make me wonder why the personal tax allowance isn't a damn sight higher and the basic rate amended to make the overall tax take financially neutral.

    The last budget basically stuffed single people on a comparitively low salary by the abolition of the 10p tax rate, as the 2p reduction in the basic rate didn't compensate for that in their cases. I think the cut-off salary was about £18,000.

    Thanks Gordon, screw working people on low wages. (Gosh, sound like some sort of beardy, weirdie Grauniad reader now, which I definitely am not :) )
  • ceridwen
    ceridwen Posts: 11,547 Forumite
    Combo Breaker First Post
    Pandora123 - please tell us on here if you do start up a frugal/green blog - I, for one, would be interested to have a look (PS: Presume you have come across

    (guy who is doing a blog re following the Compact for a year - ie the action started by a group in San Francisco(?) re not doing any unnecessary consumption - they are only allowing themselves to buy necessary goods - eg no new clothes, except underwear and footwear and generally trying not to buy things for the sake of it) - I, for one, am "guilty as charged" - I have a heck of a lot of possessions I dont actually need "because you're worth it" to quote the shampoo advert.

    Curious Moose - ah well, now we're going into the realm of politics re what the basic tax allowance should be! - and I couldnt agree more! - it is far too low. Why on earth too did they no sooner introduce a 10% taxrate than they removed it again!!
  • ceridwen
    ceridwen Posts: 11,547 Forumite
    Combo Breaker First Post
    Further thoughts - for benefit of Lillibet and Pandora123 (well - and obviously anyone else who wants to! this is not exclusive)

    (aka - LILI - Low Impact Living Initiative)

    The San Francisco group is on

    Theres reading here that can keep one occupied for hours if you also go off into the blogs they mention on the Compact website and noimpactman website.!! Perhaps you might just decide to take a weeks holiday to go off on all the trails that will start from there!
  • ceridwen
    ceridwen Posts: 11,547 Forumite
    Combo Breaker First Post
    Ok.....a....y. I have been picking up the gist of comments on my thread (well - can I feel just a little proprietorial about it??) and people are on here for various reasons - thats fine, thats okay by me.

    Now - as to people who are wondering about maybe doing a frugal green blog/maybe doing a self-sufficiency book - okay:

    - Britain is v. short (as in pretty much non-existent) of this type of blog as far as I can see - definite "gap in market"

    - There is definitely a book - and a pretty good one I think - in this, drawing various themes together. Now I personally think themes that could usefully be drawn together in a book are:
    - peak oil
    - self-sufficiency (inc reference to USA homestead movement)
    - "transition town" movement
    -the Hillbilly Housewife etc set of websites
    - the dumpster diving (freegans)
    - LILI (Low Impact Living Initiative)
    - the San Francisco Compact.

    They are all pieces of the "jigsaw" that are emerging - there may be more - open to suggestions on that one!

    The debate continues! Open to allcomers from whatever perspective they are coming from.
  • If anyone wants a good read on an American's experience of this type of frugal living, try "The Tightwad Gazette" about a woman doing similar in the 1990's. Not massively relevant to the UK 10 years later, but it's an entertaining read.
  • ceridwen
    ceridwen Posts: 11,547 Forumite
    Combo Breaker First Post
    Thanks for comment re Tightwad book - perhaps being bit of a tightwad I am not v. keen on paying for my info!!

    One of my little things is finding free e-books I might like- well there was that one I posted earlier on thread. Have also found:

    (on simple living)

    (an American frugal housewife one)

    All other suggestions welcome.
  • rosieben
    rosieben Posts: 5,010 Forumite
    Combo Breaker First Post
    I've been a follower of US homesteading sites for some years. Its evident that there is as much poverty in US as anywhere else, though of course we get a very different picture from american tv programmes. I'm full of admiration for these people, the pioneer spirit lives on! :T

    There's not always much thats useful for me tbh, not needing to keep my tractor working till I get a chance to drive to the nearest - though still very distant - town for spares!

    But they are very interesting and I keep going back for more
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string! :D

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
  • ceridwen
    ceridwen Posts: 11,547 Forumite
    Combo Breaker First Post
    quick edit - gutenberg link didnt seem to work. Try
  • grahamliza4
    grahamliza4 Posts: 133 Forumite
    cupid_s wrote: »
    this is what we spend in a year:

    mortgage 4920
    gas/elec 720
    train pass 720
    groceries 1560
    lizard food 416
    water 290
    mobile phones 180
    tv 145
    christmas 100
    train to visit family 85
    birthday presents 100
    house insurance 375
    going out 1300
    clothes 500
    holidays 1100
    extras 900
    broadband 240
    contact lenses 120

    totalling 13771

    We get enough vouchers off survey and cashback sites to cover a lot of our christmas and birthday presents spends and some household things we need, and we use our tesco clubcard vouchers to go out for a nice meal once every couple of months.

    Your lizard costs a fortune to feed! What does it eat?
  • There are lots of books at the Soil & Health Library (in the Achieving Personal Sovereignty section) on homesteading, frugality, voluntary simplicity, etc. They ask for a small donation for a membership, but it's not compulsory.

    Soil & Health Library

    I want to move to theory. Everything works in theory.
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